Archive for the ‘Apologetics’ Category

Moral Relativism : Practical? Liveable? Threatening?

February 7, 2011 3 comments

How important is this issue? After all, it’s just philosophy, and philosophy is just ideas. But ideas have consequences. Sometimes these consequences are as momentous as a holocaust, or a Hiroshima. Sometimes even more momentous. Philosophy is just thought, but sow a thought, reap an act; sow an act, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny. This is just as true for societies as it is for individuals.

Moral relativism usually includes three claims: That morality is first of all changeable; secondly, subjective; and third, individual. That it is relative first to changing times; you can’t turn back the clock. Secondly, to what we subjectively think or feel; there is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so. And thirdly, to individuals; different strokes for different folks. Moral absolutism claims that there are moral principles that are unchangeable, objective, and universal.

Here, two contributions to this topic are presented, that of Dr Peter Kreeft and the following video by Dr William Lane Craig.

Peter Maurin and Dorothy Day defined a good society as one that makes it easy for you to be good. Correlatively, a free society is one that makes it easy to be free. To be free, and to live freely, is to live spiritually, because only spirit is free—matter is not. To live spiritually is to live morally. The two essential properties of spirit that distinguish it from matter are intellect and will—the capacity for knowledge and moral choice. The ideals of truth and goodness. The most radical threat to living morally today is the loss of moral principles.

Moral practice has always been difficult for fallen humanity, but at least there was always the lighthouse of moral principles, no matter how stormy the sea of moral practice got. But today, with the majority of our mind-molders, in formal education, or informal education—that is, media—the light is gone. Morality is a fog of feelings. That is why to them, as Chesterton said, “Morality is always dreadfully complicated to a man who has lost all his principles.” Principles mean moral absolutes. Unchanging rocks beneath the changing waves of feelings and practices. Moral relativism is a philosophy that denies moral absolutes. That thought to me is the prime suspect—public enemy number one. The philosophy that has extinguished the light in the minds of our teachers, and then their students, and eventually, if not reversed, will extinguish our whole civilization. Therefore, I want not just to present a strong case against moral relativism, but to refute it, to unmask it, to strip it naked, to humiliate it, to shame it, to give it the wallop it deserves, as they say in Texas, America’s good neighbour to the south.

How important is the issue? The issue of moral relativism is merely the single most important issue of our age, for no society in all of human history has ever survived without rejecting the philosophy that I am about to refute. There has never been a society of relativists. Therefore, our society will do one of three things: either disprove one of the most universally established laws of all history; or repent of its relativism and survive; or persist in its relativism and perish.

How important is the issue? C.S. Lewis says, in The Poison of Subjectivism, that relativism “will certainly end our species and damn our souls.” Please remember that Oxonians are not given to exaggeration. Why does he say “damn our souls?” Because Lewis is a Christian, and he does not disagree with the fundamental teaching of his master, Christ, and all the prophets in the Jewish tradition, that salvation presupposes repentance, and repentance presupposes an objectively real moral law. Moral relativism eliminates that law, thus trivializes repentance, thus imperils salvation.

Why does he say, “end our species,” and not just modern Western civilization? Because the entire human species is becoming increasingly Westernized and relativized. It is ironic that America, the primary source of relativism in the world today, is also the world’s most religious nation. This is ironic because religion is to relativism what Dr. Van Helsing is to Count Dracula. Within America, the strongest opposition to relativism comes from the churches. Yet a still further irony, according to the most recent polls, Catholics are as relativistic, both in behavior and in belief, as non-Catholics. Sixty-two percent of Evangelicals say they disbelieve in any absolute or unchanging truths, and American Jews are significantly more relativistic and more secular than Gentiles. Only Orthodox Jews, the Eastern Orthodox, and Fundamentalists seem to be resisting the culture, but not by converting it, but by withdrawing from it. And that includes most Muslims, except for the tiny minority who terrorize it. When Pat Buchanan told us in 1992 that we were in a culture war, all the media laughed, sneered, and barked at him. Today, everyone knows he was right, and the culture war is most essentially about this issue.

See the links below for further detail on this argument against moral relativism.

1. Argument for Relativism:  Psychological
2. Argument for Relativism:  Cultural
3. Argument for Relativism:  Social Conditioning
4. Argument for Relativism:  Freedom
5. Argument for Relativism:  Tolerance
6. Argument for Relativism:  Situations

7. Argument for Absolutism:  Consequences
8. Argument for Absolutism:  Tradition
9. Argument for Absolutism:  Moral Experience
10. Argument for Absolutism:  Ad Hominem
11. Argument for Absolutism:  Moral Language

Postscript: Cause and Cure


Who Created The Creator?

December 28, 2010 1 comment

This popular question answered plainly and as you may not have heard it answered before…

Categories: Apologetics, Biblical, Creation Tags:

Why does God let bad things happen?!

December 4, 2010 2 comments

Watch this video to get some perspective on this age old dilemma.

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Science : Implicitly Bound To Facts Beyond Suspicion?

November 22, 2010 Leave a comment

“A powerful riposte to atheist mockery and cocksure science, and to the sort of philosophy that surrenders to them. David Berlinski proceeds reasonably and calmly to challenge recent scientific theorizing and to expose the unreason from which it presumes to criticize religion.”
—Harvey Mansfield, Professor of Government, Harvard University

Militant atheism is on the rise. Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens have dominated bestseller lists with books denigrating religious belief as dangerous foolishness. And these authors are merely the leading edge of a far larger movement–one that now includes much of the scientific community.

“The attack on traditional religious thought,” writes David Berlinski in The Devil’s Delusion, “marks the consolidation in our time of science as the single system of belief in which rational men and women might place their faith, and if not their faith, then certainly their devotion.”

A secular Jew, Berlinski nonetheless delivers a biting defense of religious thought. An acclaimed author who has spent his career writing about mathematics and the sciences, he turns the scientific community’s cherished skepticism back on itself, daring to ask and answer some rather embarrassing questions:

Has anyone provided a proof of God’s inexistence?
Not even close.

Has quantum cosmology explained the emergence of the universe or why it is here?
Not even close.

Have the sciences explained why our universe seems to be fine-tuned to allow for the existence of life?
Not even close.

Are physicists and biologists willing to believe in anything so long as it is not religious thought?
Close enough.

Has rationalism in moral thought provided us with an understanding of what is good, what is right, and what is moral?
Not close enough.

Has secularism in the terrible twentieth century been a force for good?
Not even close to being close.

Is there a narrow and oppressive orthodoxy of thought and opinion within the sciences?
Close enough.

Does anything in the sciences or in their philosophy justify the claim that religious belief is irrational?
Not even ballpark.

Is scientific atheism a frivolous exercise in intellectual contempt?
Dead on.

Berlinski does not dismiss the achievements of western science. The great physical theories, he observes, are among the treasures of the human race. But they do nothing to answer the questions that religion asks, and they fail to offer a coherent description of the cosmos or the methods by which it might be investigated.

This book explores the limits of science and the pretensions of those who insist it can be–indeed must be–the ultimate touchstone for understanding our world and ourselves.

David Berlinski is an American educator and author of several books on mathematics. He received his Ph.D. in philosophy from Princeton University and was later a postdoctoral fellow in mathematics and molecular biology at Columbia University. He has authored works on systems analysis, differential topology, theoretical biology, analytic philosophy, and the philosophy of mathematics, as well as three novels. He has also taught philosophy, mathematics and English at Stanford, Rutgers, the City University of New York and the Université de Paris. In addition, he has held research fellowships at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Austria and the Institut des Hautes Études Scientifiques.

Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design

October 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Signature in the Cell by Stephen C. Meyer was released in June 2009 and has been viewed as “the first book to make a comprehensive case for intelligent design based upon DNA”. Meyer defines what ID is and is not and shows that the argument for intelligent design is not based on ignorance or ‘giving up on science’, but instead upon our growing scientific knowledge of the information stored in the cell.

The book has been well-received and made the list of “Top Ten Best Selling Science Books of 2009” at According to the Discovery Institute, by November 2009 the book had entered its fifth printing.

The book was endorsed by scientists such as Philip Skell, J. Scott Turner, Alistair Noble and Edward Peltzer, and received a favorable review from philosopher Thomas Nagel, in The Times, who wrote that “Signature in the Cell…is a detailed account of the problem of how life came into existence from lifeless matter – something that had to happen before the process of biological evolution could begin … Meyer is a Christian, but atheists, and theists who believe God never intervenes in the natural world, will be instructed by his careful presentation of this fiendishly difficult problem.” The book also received a favorable review in TELICOM, “The Journal of the International Society of Philosophical Enquiry.”

When Thomas Nagel submitted the book as his contribution to the “2009 Books of the Year” supplement for The Times, many in the philosophical and scientific community responded negatively to his recommendation. Specifically, Stephen Fletcher, chemist at Loughborough University, wrote in The Times Literary Supplement, Nagel is “promoting the book to the rest of us using statements that are factually incorrect.” Fletcher explained “Natural selection is in fact a chemical process as well as a biological process, and it was operating for about half a billion years before the earliest cellular life forms appear in the fossil record.” In another publication, Fletcher wrote that “I am afraid that reality has overtaken Meyer’s book and its flawed reasoning” in pointing out scientific problems with Meyer’s work by citing how RNA “survived and evolved into our own human protein-making factory, and continues to make our fingers and toes.”. Meyer responded to Fletcher’s criticisms of the book via an unpublished letter to The Times Literary Supplement that was posted on Meyer’s website, stating that “To support his claim that scientific developments have ‘overtaken Meyer’s book,’ Fletcher cites, first, a scientific study by chemists Matthew Powner, Beatrice Gerland and John Sutherland of the University of Manchester. This study does partially address one, though only one, of the many outstanding difficulties associated with the RNA world scenario, the most popular current theory of the undirected chemical evolution of life. Starting with several simple chemical compounds, Powner and colleagues successfully synthesized a pyrimidine ribonucleotide, one of the building blocks of the RNA molecule. Nevertheless, this work does nothing to address the much more acute problem of explaining how the nucleotide bases in DNA or RNA acquired their specific information-rich arrangements, which is the central topic of my book.”

In May 2010, the Discovery Institute, which is directed by Meyer, released a free 105 page eBook titled Signature of Controversy: Responses to Critics of Signature in the Cell with chapters by Discovery Institute fellows David Berlinski, David Klinghoffer, Casey Luskin, Stephen C. Meyer, Paul Nelson, Jay Richards and Richard Sternberg.

Debate with Michael Shermer dealing with objections to intelligent design, the existence of design in nature & “Who designed the designer?”

For more information about the book, further reviews & related debates go to

Call to read Isaiah 53 in NYC

July 20, 2010 Leave a comment

New York was recently encouraged to read the Bible in bold print on the daily commute. Must have been quite a surprise. The New York Times also ran a matching full page advertisement (shown below). Read more here.

Click for full-size image.

Categories: Apologetics, Biblical

Revelations through Apologetics…

April 26, 2010 2 comments

Many good resources exist that too few people are aware of. The following are some of the best sources, to my knowledge, that deal with some of the toughest questions in a plain & forthright way. Feel free to share apologetics sources you know of in the comment area.

Suggested organizations that publish or host good apologetics resources: (click links on image below)

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