8 Tips to Discuss Politics, Race, Religion and Other Controversial Topics

Apologetics, Christianity, Controversial Topics, Faithful Thinkers, Legislating Morality, Culture & Politics, Luke Nix, Politics, Race, religion
By Luke Nix Who has not been exposed to or may be even involved in discussions of controversial topics these days? It seems that talk of politics, race, religion, and a whole host of other controversial topics are swirling around us everywhere we go. Some topics we can ignore and avoid, and others we get sucked into. Some discussions we get reluctantly and others we get into too eagerly. There are numerous pitfalls to having these discussions that we all want to avoid, so today, I want to offer eight tips for discussing controversial topics that will hopefully help your discussions be more productive and respectful. Being that the USA is in an election year (2020), politics seems to be on everyone’s mind, so let’s start with this quote from…
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Zombie History — Using Galileo to Whack Intelligent Design

Alison Abbott, Andrew Dickson White, Catholic Church, Christianity, climate change, creationism, Discovery Institute, Faith & Science, Galileo Affair, Galileo and the Science Deniers, Galileo Galilei, Heresy, historicity, Inquisition, Intelligent Design, John William Draper, Jonathan Wells, Leaning Tower of Pisa, Mario Livio, Michael Keas, Nature (journal), Nicolaus Copernicus, public schools, religion, science denialism, science deniers, Tychonian model, Unbelievable?, Urban VIII, Warfare Thesis, Zombie Science
A useful myth is hard to put down. The Galileo myth gives a premiere illustration. Ever since John William Draper and Andrew Dickson White fostered the “warfare thesis” of “science vs religion” in the late 19th century, appealing to the Galileo affair as the example par excellence, historians have had little luck convincing the scientific establishment that their version of the Galileo story is flawed. Fortunately, we have the new book by Michael Keas to help set the story straight: Unbelievable: 7 Myths About the History and Future of Science and Religion. Keas traces the development of the warfare thesis through the 19th century. Despite being largely discredited by historians, the warfare thesis lives on into our time. For instance, Mario Livio has a new book out, Galileo and the…
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From Pfizer, Scientism and Self-Congratulation

art, authority, Brian Miller, C.S. Lewis, China, coronavirus, COVID-19, Creativity, Discovery Institute, Douglas Axe, economic collapse, entertainment, history, mask, medical science, Medicine, Michael Egnor, music, pandemic, Pfizer Inc., philosophy, Politics, religion, Rich Lowry, Robert J. Marks, scientism, social distancing, totem, Wesley Smith, worship, Wuhan
In the race to defeat the coronavirus, good fortune to Pfizer Inc., among others. The drug giant said last week “it will begin testing of its experimental vaccine in the U.S. as early as next week.” But this new ad from Pfizer goes over the top in its self-congratulation: They say: At a time when things are most uncertain, we turn to the most certain thing there is: Science. Science can overcome diseases, create cures, and yes, beat pandemics. Because when it’s faced with a new opponent, it doesn’t back down. It revs up, asking questions till it finds what it’s looking for. That’s the power of science. Well actually, that’s the power of creative ingenuity in general, a capacity unique to human beings, that is put to use in…
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Jay Richards: Warfare Thesis Ignores the Roots of Science

Center for Science & Culture, Faith & Science, ID The Future, Jay Richards, Judeo-Christian culture, materialism, Podcast, religion, Robert Crowther, science, Warfare Thesis
On a classic episode of ID the Future, Center for Science & Culture Director of Communications Rob Crowther interviews CSC Senior Fellow Jay Richards. Listen in as Richards rebuts the warfare thesis — the idea that religion and science are antagonists — and argues that historically, Judeo-Christian culture “was the seedbed from which science emerged.” Has science missed out by being partnered with materialism? Download the podcast or listen to it here. Photo: Jay Richards in a scene from “Why Materialism Fails,” via Discovery Institute. The post Jay Richards: Warfare Thesis Ignores the Roots of Science appeared first on Evolution News.
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Watch: Preview Stephen Meyer’s New Book — The Return of the God Hypothesis

Adolf Grünbaum, atheists, Bertrand Russell, Christianity, cosmology, Dallas Conference on Science and Faith, Eric Metaxas, Evolution News, Faith & Science, Intelligent Design, Michael Behe, Paul Nelson, professors, publishing, religion, science, scientific atheism, Stephen Meyer, The Return of the God Hypothesis, United States
Stephen Meyer has finished his next book, The Return of the God Hypothesis, and (here is a bit of insider information) is currently awaiting copyedits from his publisher. The wheels of book publishing do not grind hastily. I’ve read the book, and it’s fantastic. If you are impatient to get your hands on it, you can get a bit of a preview in a presentation Dr. Meyer gave at the 2020 Dallas Conference on Science and Faith. You can watch that right now: It’s poignant to think that the conference, on January 25, was held just a few days after the first COVID-19 case in the United States was confirmed, in a man who had visited Wuhan. That was here in Washington State. In our present surreal, locked-down virus world,…
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Another Cosmos Episode, Another Sermon from Pastor Tyson

Al Ghazali, bees, Charles Darwin, China, consciousness, cosmos, Cosmos: Possible Worlds, Darwinism, empirical science, extraterrestrial intelligence, FAST telescope, Fox Broadcasting Company, Francis of Assisi, Maimonides, National Geographic Channel, natural selection, naturalistic philosophy, Physics, Earth & Space, religion, Smithsonian Magazine, The Hidden Life of Trees, The Secret Life of Plants, vitalism
Several themes weave their way through the current season of Cosmos, “Possible Worlds.”  The careful viewer will detect at least one in each episode. They include the ideas that a modern intellectual awakening took place when science (defined as applied naturalistic philosophy) triumphed over religion and superstition; that human exceptionalism is an ancient prejudice we must abandon; and that you can find meaning in a universe without a god. Episode 7, which aired last night on Fox and National Geographic, presents the viewer with a heavy dose of the second idea. The episode begins with Neil deGrasse Tyson walking on the perimeter of the recently completed 500-meter single dish radio telescope, FAST, in China. The episode is about the first contact with another intelligence, which many hope will be made with…
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“World Happiness Report” Focuses on…Government

Canada, creator, Culture & Ethics, Czech Republic, Declaration of Independence, Denmark, faith, Finland, France, Gallup World Poll, GDP per capita, happiness, happiness inequality, Iceland, Israel, Italy, life expectancy, life satisfaction, meaningful life, Norway, Pilate, pro-social behavior, religion, Spain, suicide, technocrats, United States, World Happiness Report
The annual “World Happiness Report” for 2019 is out. Depending on the Gallup World Poll, it turns out the U.S. comes in rather low among free countries at number 19. The Declaration of Independence states that all of us are “endowed” by our Creator with “inalienable rights,” among which is “the pursuit of happiness.” The idea, of course, is that finding happiness is the responsibility of the individual and that government may not unduly interfere with that quest. The Technocrats Speak But according to the study’s technocratic authors, government is the prime creator of happiness. Indeed, the first topic mentioned in the report is “happiness and government,” which are the subjects of the first two chapters. In Chapter 2 they write: At the most basic level, good government establishes and…
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New Atheism: A Shipwreck of Fools

aquinas, Arc Digital, Asherah poles, Atheism, autopsy, bacteria, book deals, child sacrifice, Christopher Hitchens, computer program, creation myth, Edward Feser, evolutionary theory, Faith & Science, First Amendment, Five Ways, Gaia, genetic information, John Haldane, Lawrence Krauss, Ludwig Wittgenstein, meat machines, New Atheists, Nobel Prize, paganism, plagiarism, religion, Richard Dawkins, Valley of Hinnom
New Atheism is dead. It was conceptually dead from birth, but now it’s stopped twitching. Ben Sixsmith at Arc Digital has a good article with a lot of insight into its demise. From  “New Atheism: An Autopsy”: To be sure, New Atheists could be very, very bad at arguing that God does not exist. There was, for example, Lawrence Krauss writing a book about how something can come from nothing while attributing material qualities to the latter. There was Richard Dawkins trying to refute the famous “Five Ways” of Aquinas without even attempting to understand their terms. (“Whereof one cannot speak,” groaned Wittgenstein, “Thereof one must remain silent.”) There was Christopher Hitchens striding into philosophy like an elephant onto an ice skating rink and saying: “…the postulate of a designer…
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Letter from San Diego: Science for Seminaries or Materialism for the Masses?

American Academy of Religion, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Andover Newton Theological Seminary, biomimicry, Columbia Theological Seminary, creationism, Darwinian materialism, Decatur, dialogue, DoSER program, ecological problems, Faith & Science, Georgia, Intelligent Design, Jeffrey Kripal, materialism, McCormick Theological Seminary, pastors, priests, religion, Rice University, San Diego, science, Science for Seminaries, scientific orthodoxies, Scripps Institution of Oceanography, The Flip, The Mystery of Evolutionary Mechanisms
I recently traveled to San Diego to attend the annual meeting of the American Academy of Religion. While there, I participated in a workshop organized by the Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion (DoSER) program of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. A current project of the DoSER program called “Science for Seminaries” aims to enhance the scientific literacy of pastors, priests, and rabbis by making cutting edge scientific resources available to seminary and rabbinical school professors. Though the DoSER program also states as one of its goals to help scientists engage with pastors, priests, and theologians, I got the feeling at this workshop that the DoSER program might better be renamed MoSER, the Monologue on Science, Ethics, and Religion. There was definitely more emphasis on getting science…
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Bioethics Coming to Elementary and High Schools?

abortion, animals, assisted suicide, bioethics, Culture & Ethics, dead donor rule, elementary school, end of life, euthanasia, futile care, high school, ideology, Jacob M. Appel, Leon Kass, Medicine, morality, organ harvesting, philosophy, prenatal screening, President’s Council on Bioethics, puberty, religion, Scientific American, sex education, students, textbooks
Bioethicist Jacob M. Appel wants the bioethics movement to educate your children about the policy and personal conundrums that involve medical care and health public policy. He claims that “most of us give little thought” to issues that may arise, such as end-of-life care and prenatal screening. Then, when an issue does come up, people are unprepared to make wise and informed decisions. From, “The Silent Crisis of Bioethics Illiteracy,” published in Scientific American: Change will only occur when bioethics is broadly incorporated into school curricula [at an early age] and when our nation’s thought leaders begin to place emphasis on the importance of reflecting meaningfully in advance upon these issues… Often merely recognizing such issues in advance is winning the greater part of the battle. Just as we teach…
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