October 31st, 2014
If you want to get under the skin of a philosopher there are a few ways to irk us. There’s more that just the annoyance of telling someone you’re a philosopher and they respond, “Oh, I took a psychology course in university!” Yes, that type of misunderstanding warrants the philosopher’s incredulous stare… just as these will:
10. “So, how will you make money? What do you do?”
Okay, so I’m not an engineer. I’m not a research chemist for a Fortune 500 corporation and I may not be able to work most blue collar tasks… However, I, and other philosophers, think (but there’s more!). For the philosopher, the act of philosophizing is not a mere intellectual exercise that could exist solely in consciousness. To the contrary, philosophy is a procedure and inquiry to the self, a “discovery and self-liberation.” The intellectual and cognitive acts of philosophy are participatory in their inquiry of the world. This would be very similar to the understanding that Socrates is the philosopher. He not only taught and philosophized, but he understood that the very act of philosophizing was an act of engagement with the world and it was a way of life.
9. The university administration putting philosophy in the periphery
Philosophy departments aren’t typically the big money-makers at university–typically. However, the university system needs to understand that the philosophy faculty, the philosophy students, and the discipline of philosophy in general is an investment rather than a moneymaker. I’ve seen firsthand that a university can divest in the philosophy department. Academia, the provost, the administrators, et al, need to view philosophy as the foundation by which a university is built and sustained.
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October 28th, 2013
Why I am a Christian: I was raise by Atheist parents, I had in my youth learned most of the atheist arguments against God and used them to please my mother and convince myself I was right. In my teens I had followed the path of Atheism and remained antagonistic to Christians and Christianity. Where I was raised were many Mennonites, these farming community kids had nothing to say against my ideas and had even less interest in being in my company while I lived as drug dealer in my High School.
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September 3rd, 2013
Far too often I find Christians dismissing something because it’s “philosophy” and not from the Bible, a creed, a confession, etc. In my experience, many people tend to accuse Molinism as philosophy. To follow this brief tangent, middle knowledge and Molinism isn’t a philosophical grid being laid over Scripture; rather, it’s a derivation of a commitment to certain principles already obtained from Scripture. (See The Molinism Directory for more on that issue.) Well, it just happens to be the case that I saw a tweet yesterday making this same claim about Molinism being philosophy. (This particular tweet simply categorizes Molinism as philosophy but it’s still dismissed in the long chain of preceding and succeeding tweets.)
If we are pursuing truth then there are many means to discovering what the truth is [about God, reality, etc.]. It’s incredibly naïve to dismiss something because it is not in a preferred category. If we are pursing truth then it would be a category error to dismiss Molinism simply because it’s philosophy (according to the person making the claim). Feel free to disagree with Molinism but do so on a consistent basis and refute it via Scriptural witness, theological reflection/considerations, logical and metaphysical consistency, etc.
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August 15th, 2013
A friend of mine recently sent me the link to Jeffrey Jay Lowder’s Patheos blog “The Secular Outpost.” I’ve seen the blog a couple times in the past but I’m not familiar with it. I must say, it’s very nice to see a kind review. It was constructive and he demonstrated interaction with my material. That’s so refreshing! I’ve read other reviews from blogs and Mr. Lowder’s stands much higher than, say, John Loftus’ review. Loftus recognized that I was intelligent and that I was a strong opponent in BS. It’s okay if you chuckled there. It’s not offensive when you read where he’s coming from. No hard feelings, it’s just that Mr. Lowder’s is much more substantive.
Anyways, I don’t have much to comment on concerning Lowder’s review. Not many people use abductive arguments and so he found the need to reformulate my arguments [in a manner that he saw worked best, which was nice]. I don’t think that’s necessarily the case but I’ll provide a link to my use and formulation of the arguments. The other thing is that I didn’t defend some premises with much backing from the get-go. That’s a time issue. I wish I could’ve provided more but for my opening I was limited.
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May 14th, 2013
Adoption is God’s choosing of individuals to be adopted into the spiritual family to receive future riches and glory. What must be defined about the doctrine is what it means for a believer to be in the “spiritual family.” Thomas Schreiner places the value of adoption on those who are not slaves to the power of sin. Those who did not have the Spirit of Christ were subject to the slavery of sin; they were in subjection to the power of sin [cf. Gal. 4.7]. The Spirit that is given to believers is a Spirit that liberates from the power of sin, and thus a new obedience is generated in the heart of believers.
The passage from Romans 8.16 confirms that we are God’s children by bearing witness with our spirit. The critical issue for adoption is that there is cooperation with the human spirit and the Holy Spirit. “Our spirit” cannot be identified as the Holy Spirit. Verse 17 reinforces inheritance (κληρονομία, kleronomia) of future glory with God.
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April 25th, 2012
I follow a blog belonging to a good friend of mine and she has excellent, provoking, and challenging posts. I read her most recent one and I thought I’d share it here. I would encourage you to sign up and follow her via email or RSS feed. Her blog is ALLISONJBRAUN. Can you guess what her name is? Also, feel free to follow her on Twitter: @iateacandleonce
In my life I have seen God answer my prayers in very, very interesting ways. He is always so Faithful though He may not always answer them the way “we” think or expect Him to.
I could tell a hundred stories of how God has miraculously answered my prayers (seriously, I have some crazy ones, ask me anytime). Miraculous in good ways and bad. But nonetheless, for His glory only.
I am here to tell you if you are serious about God and are serious about prayer- be prepared and be careful what you pray for. Because He may actually answer them.
Recently, I have been praying that I would be more generous and loving. Generous not just with my money, but with my time, possessions, words, or whatever it may be. And praying that I would learn and grow to truly love others with Christ’s love and see people with His eyes.
Yep, that might sound good and all in a prayer. And I do mean it. But of course I don’t know about how God will actually grant these wonderful requests to me… CONTINUE READING
April 17th, 2012
There are three primary categories for virtue the Christian/theist will affirm. The first are the transcendental virtues: truth, beauty, and goodness. The second set is the theological virtues: faith, hope, and love/charity. Then there are the four cardinal virtues: prudence, courage, patience, and justice. It’s my belief that every Christian must practice epistemic humility. What is that? Well, epistemic humility, in the sense I’ll be using it, refers to an application of the four cardinal virtues in the area of epistemology (knowledge). Each of these virtues have a respective vice. For instance, the virtue of moderation would appear as a vice in addiction.
The virtue of epistemic prudence is know when and how to appropriate your knowledge to others. Have you ever noticed that person in class or in church that seems to be the ‘know-it-all,’ whether they actually are or not? Of course, it’s worse when they’re simply ignorant of what they’re talking about, but not only is this person annoying but there may be several issues rooted in the flaunting of knowledge. There’s nothing wrong with sharing you’re knowledge but, like I said, it’s how and when you share it.
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April 17th, 2012
I grew up going to a private Christian elementary school down in southern California. Because of my exposure to Christianity and God there, I grew up with a fear and basic knowledge of Jesus and his existence. After being switched to public school, I had retained my Christian identity but I never really followed through as a faithful believer–such as reading my bible, going to church, or praying. It was in the 8th grade when one morning my mother woke me up extremely early in the morning saying, “Get up! We’re going to church.” “What? Church? Huh?” Was my initial reaction. I had never attended a church service, outside of the chapel services I went to in my private school, in my life. I was entirely confused. We never went to church, and, out of nowhere, my mom is waking me up EARLY on a Sunday morning for his. Grudgingly, I stood up, got changed, and went with them to a small church that was couched into a little corner of a shopping center next to a pizza shop and a beauty salon.
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November 8th, 2011
The poet John Milton put it so well when he said that “Truth will rise to the top through a free and open exchange in the marketplace of ideas.” This is true whether this marketplace is in a verbal debate, a written debate, or peer-reviewed literature. What serves as a decline in the value of ideas are when these ideas have no competition and/or no competition is invited or encouraged.
I’ve recently blogged on Richard Dawkins’ and PZ Myers’ excuses to not engage in dialogue with William Lane Craig. Once Myers read my blog post he was quick on his draw and gave colorful responses such as:
You call an exposure of WL Craig’s blatant misrepresentation of science “tomfoolery”? OK, I see where you stand. In ignorance.
And when I said that there should be dialogue he responded with,
It’s what YOU want. Why shd we want a dialog with a fraud & moral monster? RT @maxeoa A dialogue is all we want.
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