Reasonable Doubts Podcast

Reasonable Doubts Podcast

Australia

Reasonable Doubts takes an informative and humorous look at religion from a freethinking perspective; offering news and commentary of interest to skeptics, atheists, agnostics, humanists, courageous religious believers looking for a challenge and freethinkers of all persuasions. In addition to interviewing the top minds in skepticism (former guests include Christopher Hitchens, Susan Jacoby, Paul Kurtz, Edward Tabash, DJ Grothe) RD offers regular segments on counter-apologetics, biblical criticism, creationism intelligent design and church state issues. RD also examines the psychology of religion, reviewing recent and exciting research you won't hear about anywhere else. Tune in for a hard-hitting critique of religion balanced by plenty of humor, a fair-minded attitude and a commitment to critical thinking. Check out our website at doubtcast.org for information, episode links or to email questions, comments and challenges. Reasonable Doubts...for those who won't just take things on faith.

Episodes

139 What's Past is Prologue  

Here it is…the final episode of Reasonable Doubts, featuring new Counterapologetics, God Thinks Like You and Polyatheism segments mixed with goodbyes from our fans and outtakes from the past eight years of doubtcasting. Thank you to everyone who made this show what it was. Special thanks to Jonathan MS Pearce for the spoken word introduction to the show and to Hugh McDonald for allowing us to use his song "Schrodinger's Cat" for this episode.

rd138 Interview with Shelley Segal  

This podcast features a previously unreleased interview with Australian Singer and Songwriter Shelley Segal. Shelly shares about her experience growing up in a conservative Jewish household and how her music naturally turned to turned to secular themes when she decided she was an atheist. She also performs two songs from "An Atheist Album."

rd137 Je Suis Charlie with guest Dan Fincke  

This one is all about Charlie. Guest Dan Fincke defends free speach and the right to blaspheme. Dr. Galen examines the psychological root to religious extremism and the Enuma Elish is the subject of this episode's Polyatheism.

rd136 Freedom Isn't Free  

Dale McGowan, executive director of the Foundation Beyond Belief talks about some of the exciting ways the organization plans to put humanist principles into action in 2015. Also, statistics on the public's attitudes towards the Christmas holiday, the John Templeton Foundation donates millions of dollars to philosophers who study free will and the Norse god Oden might just be the world's first Christmas ornament.

RD Extra: Brayton v Schmig - Was the U.S. Founded on Christianity?  

Is the US Government Founded on the Christian Religion? Ed Brayton is the founder and owner of the Freethought Blogs network and the voice behind the popular blog Dispatches from the Culture Wars. He is the co-founder and past president of Michigan Citizens for Science and the recipient of the Friend of Darwin Award from the National Center for Science Education and has appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show, The Thom Hartmann Show, and C-SPAN. Ed is also a current member of CFI Advisory Board. Ed brayton will be arguing “That the government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion. Arguing against that resolution is Dr. Tim Schmig, the Executive Director for the Michigan Association of Christian Schools. Tim Schmig has taught High School History, Social Studies, Government and Economics for 5 years in two different Christian Schools. He holds a Doctorate of Literature in Ministry from Maranatha Baptist Bible College.Tim spends much time in Washington D.C. and Lansing meeting with elected officials and has earned respect and garnered influence on both sides of the political aisle. The debate took place November 12, 2014 at CFI Michigan in Grand Rapids. Thanks to Ed Brayton and CFI michigan for letting us share this debate, and special thanks to Mike Slomka for helping capture the audio. Reasonable Doubts will be back with another regular format episode on December 15th.

RD Extra: Lowder v Vandergriff - Metaphysical Naturalism or Christian Theism? Where Does the Evidence Point?  

This RD Extra features a debate, hosted by the Reasonable Doubts Podcast, between Jeffery Jay Lowder and Kevin Vandergriff on "Metaphysical Naturalism or Christian Theism? Where Does the Evidence Point?"

rd135 Pain and Paradox  

Physical pain plays an important biological role, but should we expect it to in a world created by God? Also, a recent paper in the journal cognition posits distinct cognitive attitudes underlying religious belief and factual reasoning, but is the evidence from cognitive science and philosophy sufficient to support this claim?

rd134 Coming Out Atheist  

Many non-theists keep their doubts hidden for fear of losing friends and love ones. But remaining in the closet also has drawbacks: stress, hypocrisy, the oppression of silence and fear of being found out. Despite the risks, those who've made the decision to be open about their atheism almost never regret it. Luckily, doubters do not need to make this important decision on their own. Greta Christina (FTB blogger and author of Why Are You Atheists So Angry) conducted over 400 interviews with non-theists about their experiences of leaving the closet. Along the way she discovered that differing circumstances call for different coming-out strategies. Her latest book Coming Out Atheist: How to Do It, How to Help, and Why?--distills this wisdom into clear and compassionate strategies for preserving important relationships while being open about your doubts.

rd133 Your God Detector is Busted  

Our cognitive faculties evolved to help us detect agents in our environment and to predict the content of their minds but those same faculties also generate beliefs in supernatural minds and divine agents. While this seems to suggest that religious intuitions are untrustworthy by-products of ordinary cognitive processes, Cognitive psychologists like Justin Barrett argue the existence of these "god-faculties" in the brain should not make the atheist more comfortable with their skepticism. In fact, Barrett believes they actually provide a defeater for atheism.

rd132 Euthyphro's Revenge  

Does God approve actions because they are good? Or is an action good because God approves it? Euthyphro's Dilemma is perhaps the oldest challenge to a theistic conception of morality, but many modern philosophers of religion believe the dilemma to be a false one. While the traditional formulation of the dilemma may have an answer, Socrates' challenge lives on in a new form.

rd131 Witch-Hunt  

The award-winning human rights activist Leo Igwe exposes how witchcraft accusations are used to prey upon societies most vulnerable, often with tragic consequences. He recounts how the study of philosophy emboldened him to speak out against the dangers of superstitious and magical thinking in his home country of Nigeria and some of the challenges of promoting critical thinking and humanism in Africa.

RD Extra: Kozak vs Schieber - Does the Christian God Exist?  

This debate on the existence of the Christian God took place at Ferris State University on October 23rd. Steven Kozak - Christian Apologist, Author (Stevenkozak.com) Justin Schieber - Atheist, Podcast Co-host (doubtcast.org)

rd130 How Jesus Beacame God with guest Bart D. Ehrman  

How did Jesus, an apocalyptic prophet from Galilee, come to be regarded as a God by his followers? Bart D. Ehrman, Professor of Religious studies at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, joins us on the show to discuss his new book "How Jesus Became God", which traces the historical evolution of early Christian thought about the nature and identity of Jesus.

rd129 Get A New Hobby, Lobby  

Ed Brayton of Dispatches from the Culture Wars joins the Doubtcasters for an analysis of the SCOTUS ruling on the recent Hobby Lobby case. Some popular misunderstandings about the ruling and its implications are dispelled, and the true dangers of the decision are discussed. Also, Luke Galen reviews polling data on where the American public stands on the issue of birth control and offers some predictions on how the SCOTUS ruling may impact individuals and the nation.

rd128 Inside the Mind of a Religious Sexual Abuser  

Major League Baseball player Chad Curtis will always be remembered as the man who led the New York Yankees to victory by catching the last out of the last World Series game of the 20th century. To many religious sports fans, Curtis was a hero for taking a strong stand for Christian principles. He regularly spoke out against performance enhancing drugs and the hedonistic lifestyle of many professional athletes. He donated half of his income to charities that promoted Christian values. His friends described him as "morally blameless" and in the eyes of many, Chad Curtis was one of the few true role models left in professional sports. After retirement, Curtis returned to his home in west Michigan and began working as a teacher and coach in public and private religious schools but eventually resigned when three students accused Curtis of sexually molesting them in the school training room. Curtis denied the allegations, and his community rallied behind him even as more victims came forward. Transcripts from his trial reveal how Curtis used his reputation as a righteous man to manipulate his victims and win the support of the community after his crimes had been exposed. Disturbing but insightful, the Chad Curtis story provides a unique window into the mind of a religious sexual abuser. Also on this episode: Gay marriage advocates try an unusual legal strategy, the AFA claims they are being bullied and Christianity Today debates the causes of female masturbation.

rd127 God's Not Dead  

The Doubtcasters spend the whole hour reviewing the film "God's Not Dead." The whole hour. Seriously.

RD Extra: Does Religion Make Us Better People?  

Does Religion Make Us Better People? An Empirical Critique of the Religious Prosociality Hypothesis. Does religion make us happier, healthier and more helpful? A number of popular psychology books and articles argue that religion is a positive force for enhancing the health and well-being of both individuals and whole communities. A careful examination of the social psychological literature, however, reveals a complicated relationship between religion and "pro-social" traits that defies such a simple characterization. Luke Galen, Professor of Psychology at Grand Valley State University, recently reviewed dozens of studies on religion and pro-social traits for the American Psychological Association's Psychology Bulletin, exposing some of the misleading ways in which this research is conducted and presented to the public. For this talk Jeremy Beahan will summarize key details of the review in a way that is accessible to non-professionals.

rd126 Why Would God Hide?  

Jesus said "seek and you will find" but for many spiritual seekers, clear evidence for God cannot be found no matter how hard they search. If He really exists, why would God reveal himself only to some people and not to all? For this episode we examine "The Argument from Divine Hiddenness" which assumes that a perfectly moral being would want to enter into a relationship with His creation. But If that is true, theism faces some trouble in explaining how genuinely "non-resistant" seekers of God could exist. Also on this episode: Creationists attack FOX's Cosmos series, Fred Phelps is dead, Michigan overturns its ban on gay marriage, and the link between depression, fear and belief in Hell is examined for this episodes installment of God Thinks Like You.

rd125 Nye Smokes Ham with guest Jordan Fett  

The doubtcasters, along with friend of the show Jordan Fett, share thoughts and analysis (scientific, philosophical and psychological) on the debate between Creationist Ken Ham and Bill Nye the Science Guy. Also we discuss some of the psychological barriers to understanding evolution that both creationists AND evolutionists share, for this weeks "God Thinks Like You." Also, learn about the Babylonian Ark Tablet and what it means for Biblical literalists in this episodes "Skeptics Sunday School"

rd124 The Role of Religion in Global Conflict  

New data from the Pew Research Center shows religious violence is on the rise world-wide. Religiously motivated sectarian violence, harassment of women, mob-violence and terrorism have increased steadily and dramatically over the past 7 years in every region except the Americas. Still, many of these conflicts erupt in areas plagued by disputes over land and political control, so is religion really to blame? For this episode we review empirical research that attempts to understand the role religion and politics play in global religious conflicts. Also on this episode: What the hell is going on in Philosophy of Religion departments? While only 12% of philosophers accept or lean towards theism, 72% of philosophers who specialize in Philosophy of Religion are theists. Of course, both theists and atheists can find self-serving interpretations of this disconnect, but what is really going on? In trying to answer this question we examine research and educated opinions of those who work in the field.

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