Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

Re: The Viability of an Infinite Past

Over in this thread, a number of us have been having a discussion with daveS regarding the alleged possibility of an actually infinite past. DaveS seems to think that an infinite past is a perfectly viable model that does not entail any logical contradictions.  Various arguments for the necessary finitude of the past were offered in that thread by myself and others, however, in comment #187 I offered the following argument for the finitude of the past that did not rely on the impossibility of an actual infinite existing in the world: 1) The past consists of moments that were once the present 2) If the past is infinite, then for any given moment there were infinitely many moments that Read More ›

Prominent Atheists Fundamentally Misunderstand First-Cause Arguments

Recently, a debate was held in London between theist philosopher Rabbi Daniel Rowe and atheist philosopher A.C. Grayling. The subject under dispute, unsurprisingly, was God’s existence. It’s a very interesting debate to watch. I’d never heard of Rowe before, but I was familiar with Grayling, who is sometimes referred to as the Fifth Horseman of New Atheism. Generally speaking, the “New Atheists” haven’t shown any natural genius for philosophy. Grayling, though being a professional philosopher, does not prove to be the exception here. Instead, he shows that even when they have the benefit of philosophical training, it does them very little good when they engage in debates over God’s existence. I think it would be pretty uncontroversial to say that Read More ›

Krauss vs Meyer: Debate opponents disagree not only on Origins but on the intellectual capacity of their audience

Quite expectedly, the Krauss vs Meyer debate got off to a poor start. Krauss has a few go-to moves during a debate and most of them were on full display in his opening remarks (one can hardly call them arguments). He opened with an ill-informed and misrepresentative attack on the Discovery Institute and on the person, character and honesty of Stephen Meyer himself. During his diatribe, Krauss informed the audience that Meyer and his ideas are not worth debating and that Meyer himself is something of a dishonest marketing man for Intelligent Design. And what exactly is Krauss’ justification for this claim? Well, you see, several years ago, at a school board hearing in Ohio, Krauss, having failed to inform Read More ›

HeKS continues to suggest a way forward on the KS “bomb” argument

Last week, one of my comments relating to the KS “bomb” argument was made the subject of an OP, which can be found here. In that comment, I had offered a few preliminary thoughts on Keith’s argument (originally found here, and summarized by him here) and asked a few questions to better understand the assumptions informing his argument. Unfortunately, the issues raised in my OP comment, as far I can tell, were never actually addressed. Instead, the ‘responses’ in the ensuing conversation revolved almost entirely around what the participating ID proponents considered obviously false analogies, which invoked “Planetary Angels”, “Rain Fairies”, “Salt Leprechauns”, and “Toilet Whales”. Regarding these analogies, Keith, Zachriel, and other ID opponents, seemed to be arguing as though ID Read More ›

Where Did The Water Come From?

Having read the recent post here on where Earth’s water came from, I just stumbled across an interesting article over at ExtremeTech.com from June of this year, evidently commenting on a find that was originally reported in Science (at least, that’s what I’ve gathered from reading a bit about it elsewhere). I’m not sure if anything came of this or if it was mentioned here and I missed it (I couldn’t find it in a search), but I thought it might spark some interesting discussion. From the article, titled Scientists discover an ocean 400 miles beneath our feet that could fill our oceans three times over: After decades of theorizing and searching, scientists are reporting that they’ve finally found a massive reservoir of Read More ›

Reply To An Argument Against Objective Morality: When Words Lose All Meaning

I had originally intended to post this in the comment thread to my first article here as a guest author, titled, Does It Matter What We Believe About Morality? In the end, however, it turned out to be sufficiently long and detailed that it seemed to warrant a new original post. If it’s preferred that this type of thing simply stay in the comments section then please let me know for future reference. In comment #39 for that article, Popperian made some thoughtful contributions. This is a reply to that comment, with most of his original text reproduced for reference. —————————————- Popperian, you said:   Think of it this way… Before one could actually apply any set of objective moral principles, wouldn’t this necessitate a way Read More ›