Methodological Naturalism Explained - Why Science Can't Consider The Supernatural

I am going to make a bold statement."For all practical purposes, it is always irrational to assign a supernatural cause to an event observed in the natural world."
Now I am going to attempt to back up that statement.

The only reason (of which I am aware) to assign a supernatural cause to a given event is the following:
"I do not currently understand the details and outcome of this observation given my current state of knowledge and understanding of the natural world." Also, I suspect that many of you would prefer to add the caveat "And the details and outcome of this event are consistent with a particular supernatural belief or belief system", but that is clearly an example of circular reasoning and cannot be a valid part of this discussion.  The supernatural belief or belief system is, in fact, the item in question, or to be more accurate, the observation cannot be assigned a cause which has not been demonstrated, it can only be assigned a hypothesized c…

The State of Judaism at the Dawn of Christianity

The State of Judaism at the Dawn of Christianity * References coming soon *
Modern Christianity seems to have a tendency to paint a picture of Jews around the time of Jesus being organized, in control, and in charge.  In fact, during and quite a bit before the time of Martin Luther (and unfortunately for a while after), it was commonplace for Christians to paint the Jews as a dedicated group of evildoers who had been hell-bent on the murder of our Savior.  However, the state of the Jewish people between 70 BCE and 70 CE tells us a very different story.

"The Conquest of Judea" Scholarship tells us that the Jews had been defeated by Rome at Jerusalem about a hundred years prior (ca. 63 BCE), during a time when Jewish factions were warring against each other.  The nation of Israel was subjugated under Roman rule, with excessive taxation and harsh decrees which prevented them from practicing their religion.  The authority of the Sanhedrin, the Judges who had final and ultimate …

Attempt at A Unified Theory of Biblical Biology through Mutation and Special Selection, a Hypothetical Experiment of the Mind

The following is a summary of the hypothesis overall.
If Bibles could suddenly copulate and reproduce (say, from a miraculous event), assuming that all versions of the Christian Bible (Yes, including the Catholic Bible. Shame on all you Protestants for assuming I meant just yours) could initially reproduce with each other;


Given an amount of time [t] between generations [g] and a mutation rate of, say, approximately one word per generation;


Given an environment where the selection mechanic is determined by human agreement [A] on the Bible;


It should be possible to calculate roughly the minimum number of generations it would take before a speciation event [e] occurs which produces a generation of Bibles which is universally agreed upon, with a margin of error of, say, plus or minus 1,000 people (perhaps 100 words?).

The selection pressure would be determined by something like this:  Each generation [g] produces random mutations at the rate of approximately one word for ea…

Bronze-Age Credibility

So let me see if I understand this correctly…
Modern Christianity believes that a particular group of bronze-age sheep herders were right about the biggest, most complex, and most important questions that humanity has ever asked.  They were right about life, the universe, and everything, right?
So why is it that these same people think that that same exact group of bronze-age sheep herders were wrong about pretty much everything else?  Why do they trust them implicitly for the big important questions, but not the smaller, day-to-day life questions with real-world consequences?  Let’s take a look at just a handful of some of the things that the authors of the Bible believed:
They believed that slavery was acceptable and practiced it regularly, including being able to sell your own children (Leviticus 25:44-46, Exodus 21:2-6, Exodus 21:7-11, etcetera and ad nauseum). They believed that women should have to marry their rapist (Deuteronomy 22:28-29). They believed that a woman should be comple…

Response to Facebook Conversation

Just a few points that I really want to clear up.  I've edited the list down extremely and these are the most important things, I think.
"Unfortunately it seems to be impossible, either by intelligent design or evolution, to eliminate the possibility of evil choices."   Please show your work.  Since you have exactly one (1) observable reality from which to draw your inferences and nothing to compare it to.  I'm curious as to how you came to this conclusion.  Also, and I know I've harped on this point, but Intelligent Design only suffers from that problem if the designer is not omnipotent.  An omnipotent designer would not be preventable from creating such a reality by definition, regardless of the way that things seem to be in the reality we're in.
'By definition "free will" includes the abi…

Atheist / Christian T-Shirt Challenge - Given by The Atheist Advocate

I recently shared a link to a great little article by The Atheist Advocate on in which Christians are challenged to wear an Atheist t-shirt for one week, in order to learn about what persecution means, due to the apparent misunderstanding which is often spread by Christians.
Pretty good idea, no?
Now, I know that '____ Challenge' is currently extremely cliche, but would a good name for this be 'Persecution Challenge'?  Too emotive maybe?
I may have found a taker, and I think it would be a really great experience, probably for both of us.  You see, she's a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. 
I would be required to wear a Mormon t-shirt for one week, while she would be required to wear an Atheist t-shirt during the same time.  
If we both agree on this, how should we document everything?  I'm thinking that…

The Problem of Evil, Free Will, and God's Not Dead.

Just a quick addendum to my review of 'God's Not Dead', and also a comment about the current state of Apologetics.

The Problem of Evil, simply put, is the idea that an All-Powerful 'God' would be able to abolish evil and apparently has chosen not to do so. To many, this idea of a 'God' is evil itself. Imagine, if you will, a grown man raping a 2-year old toddler. Now imagine that an all-powerful bearded man in the sky is watching this unfold, yet doing nothing. For myself, I consider this being to be completely immoral. If it were a human watching this happen, with the power to stop it yet not doing so, we would never hesitate to call the person completely immoral. Why is it so different for a 'God'?

Well, according to the movie and to current Apologetics, the solution to the Problem of Evil is 'Free Will'. By abolishing evil in this world, such a being would be abrogating human 'Free Will'. This seems to make sense on the surface, b…