The blog of Dr Glenn Andrew Peoples on Theology, Philosophy, and Social Issues

Humanism, ignorance, and bizarre terminology


Really? So humanism is natural law theory (which maintains that you can do good without being religious)? Or maybe a humanist wrote the book of Romans (which says that people without divine revelation can still know and do the right thing). Someone didn’t do much thinking when making this one! If humanism were really nothing more than a moral epistemology then it’s an all-in party!


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Arif Ahmed, morality and empiricism


  1. Ron

    What’s YOUR view of morality, Glenn? Divine Command Theory? DCT is clearly the elephant in this room! I find it telling that you keep avoiding my probing questions, and refuse to defend your religious ethic.

    What are you scared of?

    /couldn’t resist. 😀 Feel free to delete

  2. Ron, it’s scary how close to reality that (intentionally sarcastic) comment of yours is when it comes to some people’s ability to stay on track!

    I notice you used the word elephant, but it seems that you’re petrified of actually discussing the issue of illegal poaching. What’s your view, and why are you hiding it?

  3. Actually a divine command theory does not entail one cannot be good without belief in God and in fact most divine command theorists such as Craig, Adams, Quinn and so on, explicitly state you can be good without believing in God, so I guess a DC theory is a form of humanism.

    Oh and Glenn is hardly scared given he has recently published an article defending a DCT.

  4. Ron was parodying Ken’s comments in another thread.

    And yeah, what the promo for the humanist site says fits with pretty much all Christian theories of ethics (that I know of). I just used natural law because the humanist group describes its stance in almost exactly the same tems that Robert George uses for his stance. It’s bizarre that they think they can take the exact same description and decide that that’s what humanism is. It implies that humanism can exist as a deeply religious subset of Catholicism!

  5. Jeremy

    Well i would be scared if i was poaching elephants, game wardens shoot elephant poachers in Africa, this is a fact that deseves more publicity.
    And for goodness sake leave the poor elephants alone, what have they done to anybody?

  6. Let’s imagine you could write rules – let’s call them commands – as moral imperatives for mankind to follow.

    Who thinks these ‘commands’ would be worthy of inclusion?

    1.)I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery
    2.)You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.
    3.)For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and consecrated it
    4.)Keep the feast of unleavened bread.
    5.)Thou shalt not offer the blood of my sacrifice with leaven.
    6.)All the first born are mine
    7.)The fat of the feast shall not remain all night until the morning

    These moral imperatives are utterly ridiculous and only a fool would think they are worthy of inclusion?

    That fool is of course Yahweh, the god you follow – who wrote 4,5,6 and 7 personally on a piece of stone and gave it to Moses.

    But who takes the Bible literally, eh?

    Gotta shoot – feed the family.


  7. Paul if you read the text you’ll see those were not all given as moral imperatives for all mankind to follow. Something Jewish and Christian commentators have affirmed for millenia.

  8. Paul, why is it that pretty much whenever you choose to show up, you simply decide to start an entirely new discussion from scratch and offer no comment on the blog post in question?

    Just asking.

    Gotta flee (or at least give the impression that I gotta)

  9. Andrew

    wow! if Humanism is simply the belief that you can be good without a belief in God, then i’m a humanist too!


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