Category Archives: Religion

Religious issues, plus atheism.

A Modest Proposal for Anti-Abortion Catholics (and Some Others)

When I recently ran across yet another of BillDo’s rants against abortion, I was struck by an idea: during transubstantiation, a priest turns a piece of bread into living flesh. But surely this is a reversible operation, no? People turn living … Continue reading

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The Last Superstition: Conclusion

So now that we’ve come to the end of the book, what have we learned? There are two comments that stick in my mind. One is by Steve Watson: I think Aristotle systematized a lot of what we now call … Continue reading

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The Last Superstition: The Final Insult

Chapter 6: Irreducible teleology, cont. Having exoriated biologists over the fact that popular science writers use terms like “purpose” and “blueprint”, Feser moves on to nonliving systems, in which he also sees purpose and intentionality. For instance, the water and … Continue reading

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The Last Superstition: Ubiquitous Teleology

Chapter 6: Irreducible teleology We’re in the home stretch. In this penultimate section, Feser tries to make the case that teleology, or goal-directedness, permeates the world. To start with, he tells us that human minds deal with final causes all … Continue reading

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The Last Superstition: Great Gobs of Uncertainty

Chapter 6: The lump under the rug In this section, Feser argues that the existence of the mind is incompatible with materialism. Not only that, but materialist explanations of mind often refer, if only implicitly or subconsciously, to aristotelian concepts. … Continue reading

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The Last Superstition: A Slippery Slope to Sounding Weird

Chapter 6: How to lose your mind Feser opens the last chapter of his Refutation of the New Atheism by quoting a New Yorker article in which neurologist Patricia Churchland describes her mood to her husband and colleague Paul in … Continue reading

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The Last Superstition: Back to the Cave

Chapter 5: Back to Plato’s cave This last section of Chapter 5 is basically a long jeremiad against everything and everyone Feser doesn’t like, with paranoid rants about the motivations of those who prefer post-Thomistic philosophies: More precisely, their desire … Continue reading

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