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Stale, leftover Halloween candy: Scientific American on … Satan

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Thumbnail for version as of 21:53, 1 March 2008
Satan realizes that the only solution is to give up reading Uncommon Descent.


The misleading begins almost immediately:

Some 70 percent of Americans, according to a 2007 Gallup Poll, believe in his existence. This personification of evil has implications beyond the supernatural, influencing how we think about what it means for people to be “pure evil.” And as we prepare to playfully celebrate the wicked and depraved on Halloween night, it’s worth pausing to reflect on some of the psychological and behavioral consequences of these beliefs.

Hold it right there.

The belief, among theists, that evil is, at bottom, a person (just as good is, at bottom, a Person), has nothing to do with a claim that some humans are “pure evil.” That isn’t even possible if we hold that they were created by God.

The belief that good is embodied in a Person (and/or evil in a person as well) relates to the fact that all our rational experience of good and evil is of choices made by persons. We do not credit inanimate objects with moral qualities; we do not even credit intelligent animals with them, only persons.

If this is the quality of the thinking behind the research, we can probably ignore the rest of it. I’d be inclined to say that Scientific American should be ashamed of publishing such glaring nonsense, but shame is one of those things they have likely outgrown.

4 Replies to “Stale, leftover Halloween candy: Scientific American on … Satan

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    Near-Death Experiences in Thailand – Todd Murphy:
    Excerpt:The Light seems to be absent in Thai NDEs. So is the profound positive affect found in so many Western NDEs. The most common affect in our collection is negative. Unlike the negative affect in so many Western NDEs (cf. Greyson & Bush, 1992), that found in Thai NDEs (in all but case #11) has two recognizable causes. The first is fear of ‘going’. The second is horror and fear of hell. It is worth noting that although half of our collection include seeing hell (cases 2,6,7,9,10) and being forced to witness horrific tortures, not one includes the NDEer having been subjected to these torments themselves.

    Near Death Experience Thailand Asia – video

    Mesiah from I Survived Beyond and Back part 2

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    OT: C. S. Lewis: Why He Matters Today – video
    – Lewis’s importance is heard through a renowned group of Christian pastors, artists, producers, writers and scholars. These include Tim and Kathy Keller, Chuck Colson, Doug Gresham, Eric Metaxas, Devin Brown, Micheal Flaherty, Mike Peterson, Phil Cooke, Mark Joseph, Craig Detweiler and Joseph Pearce.
    This is the complete documentary. It runs about 24 minutes.

  3. 3
  4. 4
    Robert Byers says:

    This mag is attacking christian doctrine and so saying religious doctrine is relevant to science.
    They are saying belief in the devil makes people bad or dumb.
    its a unhealthy belief.
    in fact believing in the devil means assent to the concept of evil. Consent here allows defence against it.
    have they run out of ideas? Nay. tHey are so opposed to christian beliefs they are now denying satan’s existence and why a citizen should not believe in satan’s existence.
    Oh brother. give it up already.

    70 % is pretty high. i believe he is real.
    Satan is the origin of death and sickness and, I think, the great impacts below the k-t line and the biblical flood.
    Also he suggests things in peoples hearts. The brain is no hindrance.

    There is a desperate war against christianity and gives right to treat ourselves as under attack .
    Secret motivationism is alive and well in these magazines.
    is it possible they smell a serious problem with the moderrn creationist movement.!?

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