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Posted inPhilosophy, Politics

Scottish Independence – my thoughts

Reading Time: 10 minutes Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel and flag-waving the first action of a warmonger.

yes-no2

I am British, English, and live on the south coast of the UK. That said, the coming Thursday referendum affects me as much as most people in the country. I will set out what is, for me and my compatriots, the most important democratic decision in the last hundred years, if not ever. At present, the polls are all suggesting it too close to call. They are neck and neck.

Posted inEvolution, Philosophy

Steve Novella on consciousness: dualism is the new evolution for theists (Part 1)

Reading Time: 7 minutes I was listening to a Reasonable Doubts podcast from a few years ago, and it was, as ever, cracking. This one was about consciousness, its hard problem, dualism, and how it, and neuroscience, are being co-opted as a philosophical area to argue for the “God of the Gaps” style argument in the same vein as evolution in the creationist and intelligent design movements.

Posted inPhilosophy, The Secular

What is fundamentalism?

Reading Time: 3 minutes The term fundamentalism is bandied about with wild abandon, but what does it really mean? We have an intuitive sense of what it means, perhaps. When I use the term, I have in my mind ideas of hardliner, fanatical beliefs, adhered to by uncompromising believers in a dogmatic insistence that a particular (holy) text and/or ideology is correct.

Posted inPhilosophy

Top down or bottom up?

Reading Time: 3 minutes ‘Rationality is useless if it is not sound. This is what Martin Luther meant when he called reason a “whore”. Pick the wrong premises, and rationality is utterly screwed. Therefore, merely that someone is “rational” means absolutely nothing about whether that person is well-connected to reality.’

Posted inPhilosophy

More of my philosophical podcasts available

Reading Time: < 1 minute I, as you may well know, contribute to the Skepticule podcast by recording a counter-apologetics segment for them, Pearced Off. My segment is always followed by an interesting discussion of ideas brought up by the ‘panel’ of Pauls. Here are the latest offerings, with the times at which I speak: Skepticule 65 – Criticism of Plantinga’s […]

Posted inPhilosophy

The “I”, personhood and abstract objects

Reading Time: 7 minutes I have talked about abstract objects many times before, such as here. It is a fundamental area to almost everything in philosophy and is not debated nearly enough. We had a Tippling Philosophers’ debate in the pub last night about the ‘I’ and personhood, which came down to whether they really existed as concepts or not. I actually deny the continuous ‘I’.

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