Friday, August 28, 2009

OEN Interview

Ben Dench at the liberal-progressive OEN (OpEdNews) web news service conducted and published an extended interview of me on a variety of topics. It's now available online. We discuss the future of Christianity, the role of secularism in improving society, my beefs with professional philosophy, and my proposal that a lottery for congress would be superior to the current election process. And a few other things besides.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Growl Tomorrow

Just a quick notice: at 11pm EST (8pm PCT) tomorrow (Thursday, August 27, 2009), Missouri State's student run internet station, The Growl, will be having a conversation with me on a variety of topics, including the new chapters I prepared for an upcoming anthology by John Loftus (one of those agreements I made years ago that finally came due, I'll blog it when it hits the presses next year), and various things about faith, science, cosmology, and why we bother criticizing religion. This is part of the run up to the big MSU Skepticon II event this November, but I'll tell you all about that in a couple of weeks (I'm waiting for the completion of their official website, which should be any day now). For now, if you're keen, you can listen in tomorrow by going to The Growl online and clicking 'listen' at the designated hour. It doesn't appear they archive shows, so if you miss it live, you missed it for good. I apologize for the short notice, but they only just asked me last night!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Does Free Will Matter?

In his thoughtful reply to my recent review of his book Encountering Naturalism, Tom Clark narrowed the differences between us on how naturalism changes the way we should think. We agree on even more than I suspected. But important differences remain, and one is so important it warrants an entire blog of its own.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Clark's Naturalism

Last year I read two important books about metaphysical naturalism, which are very different from each other. I'll review the first today, Thomas Clark's brief summary (only 101 pages) of the naturalist worldview, in aid of his website and institute devoted to the subject, the Center for Naturalism (which has been much updated of late, and now has a rather elegant look and a great collection of articles). His book Encountering Naturalism: A Worldview and Its Uses has the virtue of being a good, brief introduction to naturalism as a worldview, emphasizing the utility of embracing it--personally, socially, and politically (his website continues that theme).