Why Talk About the Downsides of Atheism

In this video I talk about why it’s good to talk about the downsides of atheism, despite it generally being more attractive to be positive rather than negative; to make the case for something and not to merely make the case against one of its alternatives. That reason is that people often take the “cheese pizza” approach. If they think that there’s a common denominator, they will pick that to avoid conflict. By talking about the problems with atheism, it can help people to realize that there is no plain cheese pizza; that there is no common denominator.

Determinism, Free Will, and Predestination

In this video I answer a question about (atheistic, materialistic) determinism, free will, and Calvinism-style predestination.

That last part is important to point out because there is a Catholic doctrine of predestination, but it only means that God has a plan (being outside of time) and in no way contradicts human free will. I also talk about how Martin Luther denied free will as well as John Calvin, though I don’t go into great depth.

Symbolism Isn’t About Secret Decoder Rings

In this video I look at what symbolism isn’t—a secret code for a simple message that could have just been said in a sentence or two—and what it is—the structure of reality presented in a simplified form to make it easier to grasp. Symbolism isn’t a code or a cipher, it’s not about hiding a simple message where clever people will find it. Symbolism is about what makes stories good—it’s about reflecting the structure of reality.