a tippling philosopher

Browsing Archive: July, 2012

I'm going to the Olympics tonight

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Saturday, July 28, 2012, In : General Life 
I am pretty excited to be going to the Olympics tonight - Earl's Court - to watch some Women's Volleyball. It starts at 10.00 in London so travelling is sure to be a nightmare, but it's got to be done. 

The question is, who do I support? USA or South Korea?

As always, no doubt the losing underdog!

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Rules of discussion - love this!

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Friday, July 27, 2012, In : Philosophy 

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Social Deprivation Has a Measurable Effect On Brain Growth

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Monday, July 23, 2012, In : Science 

Social Deprivation Has a Measurable Effect On Brain Growth

ScienceDaily (July 23, 2012) — Severe psychological and physical neglect produces measurable changes in children's brains, finds a study led by Boston Children's Hospital. But the study also suggests that positive interventions can partially reverse these changes.


Researchers led by Margaret Sheridan, PhD, and Charles Nelson, PhD, of the Labs of Cognitive Neuroscience at Boston Children's Hospital, analyzed brain MRI scans from...

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Are humans getting better?

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Monday, July 23, 2012, In : Philosophy 
Are humans getting better?

Due to our up and coming Tippling Philosopher’s meeting entitled “Are humans getting better?” I thought I would put a piece together to get a few thoughts down. This is an interesting question because it promotes going down all sorts of rabbit-holes. I will try and keep my thoughts tight, however.

First of all, we are not talking about the world, but about humans which keeps things nice and specific. “Are humans getting better?” straight away implies ...
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One of the worst Christian arguments that I have argued against

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Sunday, July 22, 2012, In : Religion 
Recently, I posted a piece on biblical contradictions and how Christians harness cognitive dissonance to help them find desperate ways in which to defend ideas of inerrancy. I looked to show that they use a circular approach without realising it:

1) The Bible never makes contradictions
2) All alleged contradictions can be harmonised
3) Since the Bible never makes contradictions, all harmonisations are inherently more probable than the idea that there are contradictions
4) All harmonisations ...

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Another good review for "Free Will?"

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Tuesday, July 17, 2012, In : Books 
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Thought-Provoking Book!July 16, 2012
Amazon Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Free Will?: An investigation into whether we have free will, or whether I was always going to write this book (Paperback)
I recommend this entertaining and well-argued, mind-blowing book in which the author examines a notion we all seem to take for granted in the West, i.e., our dearly beloved notion of free wil...
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Atheist Acceptability on the Rise in America

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Sunday, July 15, 2012, In : Politics 

More than half would now vote for a nonbeliever.

Published on June 28, 2012 by David Niose in Our Humanity, Naturally



The good news for nonbelievers is that, for the first time ever, more than half the American population would vote for a qualified, open atheist for president.  A recentGallup poll shows that 54 percent of Americans would not consider a candidate’s atheism to be a disqualification for holding the nation's highest office.

This shows remarkable progress, a nine-point incr...

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Biblical contradictions and the Christian mind

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Friday, July 13, 2012, In : Religion 
Recently, elsewhere, I have been discussing the contradictions of the Bible. Many are fairly irrelevant in the scheme of things and don’t really invalidate the core claims of the Bible, only the claims of inerrancy. What it does show, however, is the rationalisation process of the average Christian. Not only is the process hilarious to watch, but the answers given vary so widely amongst defenders of inerrancy (and even amongst liberal defenders who instinctively try to protect the Bible's ...

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Higgs Boson - the God Particle...

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Friday, July 6, 2012, In : Humour 


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Antony Flew on 'Theology and Falsification'

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Wednesday, July 4, 2012, In : Religion 
This superb essay was linked to me by Andreas on another thread. I/t is 44 years old now and was written by Antony Flew in his prime. It is as relevant today as it ever was:

Theology and Falsification

The following excerpt was published in Reason and Responsibility (1968).

by Antony Flew

et us begin with a parable. It is a parable developed from a tale told by John Wisdom in his haunting and revolutionary article "Gods."[1] Once upon a time two explorers came upon a clearing in the jun...

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Heads you win, tails I lose

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Wednesday, July 4, 2012, In : Religion 
Here is a video summing up and previous blog post of mine about theists using evidence at the opposite ends of the spectrum to conclude that God exists.

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Big Bang didn't need God to start universe, researchers say

Posted by Jonathan Pearce on Tuesday, July 3, 2012, In : Science 
[From msnbc.com]


SANTA CLARA, Calif. — Our universe could have popped into existence 13.7 billion years ago without any divine help whatsoever, researchers say.

That may run counter to our instincts, which recoil at the thought of something coming from nothing. But we shouldn't necessarily trust our instincts, for they were honed to help us survive on the African savannah 150,000 years ago, not understand the inner workings of the universe.

Instead, scientists say, we should trust the la...

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