Sunday School

Sunday School 15th August 2021

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    Christian right-wingers tend to describe things they oppose in terms of religion but they are just anti-democratic power worshipers.

    I only use Facebook to get news feeds but I suspect I will be banned soon as I will not be able to resist praying to Satan, the one true God.

    I no longer get any sense of schadenfreude when I hear these COVID stories. I even knew a few Christians that Jesus refused to protect.

    Catholic hospitals can legally discriminate against the neighbors they don’t love. Will their Jesus be happy they ignore his command in Galatians 6:2 that they “Carry one another’s burdens; in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” or that they “Love one another deeply as brothers and sisters and outdo one another in showing honor” from Romans 12:10? I ask Catholics these questions regularly.

    Fewer than 10% of Gen Z are “scripture engaged”.

    I am glad I bought 20 years supply of toilet paper at the start of the panic as I will need it after I start my courses for horses de-worming tablets!

    Pakistan’s profane blasphemy laws.

    World of Woo: Deep dive into stupid: Meet the growing group that rejects germ theory.

    Environment:  The IPCC report is ‘code red for humanity’. Computer models of Civilization offer routes to ending Global Warming.

    Atheism is the sentry that guards the independence for your mind.

    “Doubt is not a pleasant condition,” Voltaire said, “but certainty is an absurd one.”

    Unvaccinated America, In 5 charts.

    Is Space infinite?

    The search for Dark Matter.

    25 Websites to learn new skills, for free.

    Morality does not come from any god.

    Long Reads: The James Webb Space Telescope is preparing to be launched. Democracy is sentimental. A veteran fire spotter. Vexed by the Un-Vaxxed.

    Sunday Book Club:  I Will Live. (Interview in the NYT here).

    Some photographs taken last week.  Some photos from the natural world. More here.

    While you are waiting for the kettle to boil……

    Coffee Break Video:  Atheism in the Bible belt. Spaces crowded with strangers.


    Have a great week everyone!


    Simon Paynton

    Morality does not come from any god.

    This comes down to the difference between moral realism – the idea that things can be “really” right or wrong – and the opposite of moral realism, whatever that is.

    In a religious world view, it’s possible to have objective morals – mind-independent, somehow existing in the fabric of the universe, like mathematics.  This is provided by God.  Whatever God says is right or wrong, is “really” right or wrong.

    Outside of a religious world view, objective morality does not exist in the same way.  Perceptions of moral “reality” are an illusion.  There are probably a number of reasons why norms feel objective, and one of these is that they are independent of individual minds, but are instead held by the group.  This is why the Nazis thought it was objectively correct to exterminate Jews.  But I am sure there are other reasons, for example, that kindness and fairness are evolved and innate (they show themselves in pre-school children).

    So – just as we might like things to be factually right or wrong, this just doesn’t exist.  Or rather, it’s impossible to prove moral factuality either way, and there are other explanations for the illusion of moral realism.



    Thanks, Reg!!



    My contribution this week:

    Is there more than The Standard Model? Could Dark Matter and Dark Energy be hiding there?

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