Showing posts with label "Gericke". Show all posts
Showing posts with label "Gericke". Show all posts

Dr. Jaco Gericke: "Christian philosophy of religion as nonsense on stilts"

In a previous post I responded to Thomas Nagel and Quentin Smith's claims that materialism isn't justified (Nagel), and/or A Vast Majority of Naturalists Hold To Naturalism Unreflectively (Smith). In it I mentioned Dr. Jaco Gericke's critique of Christian  philosophy of religion. I regard Gericke as having a singularly unique understanding of the relationship of biblical scholarship to the philosophy of religion, as he holds doctorates in both (see tag below). 
Of course, I'm honored Geicke recommended my book Unapologetic: Why Philosophy of Religion Must End, saying, “As an introduction to the ever-growing frustration with so-called Christian philosophy among many secular ex-Christian authors, Unapologetic is invaluable reading material for any reader interested in the wide variety of polemical issues it deals with.” My book is an extension of the same kind of arguments Dr. Hector Avalos used regarding Biblical studies in his masterful book, The End of Biblical Studies. Avalos also highly recommended my book Unapologetic.
I was similarly honored that both Gericke and Avalos wrote chapters in my aptly titled anthology, The End of Christianity. I've already posted an excerpt of Dr. Avalos' book, here. Since Dr. Gericke has recently posted his chapter online at, below is that same chapter as published in The End of Christianity. Enjoy.

Do A Vast Majority of Naturalists Hold To Naturalism Dogmatically and Unreflectively?

On a forum called "The Student Room" the question above was posed four years ago, reflecting on the musings of several "mainstream" scholars. It received no comments. Perhaps it's time. 
Thomas Nagel caused quite a stir with his book attacking different types of naturalism and highlighted the significant problems that materialism in particular face. Nagel is an atheist. He is also, albeit a hazy one, a naturalist (though he is skeptical of materialism) he is not the first prominent naturalist to highlight the unreflective acceptance many have of materialism. 
Here are other examples:

Quote of the Day On the Philosophy of Religion, By David Madison

Click here for more quotes from Loftus
Recently on Twitter Dr. David Madison said, "Everybody insists their own god exists and argues accordingly. Theism deserves the same respect as astrology, alchemy, and belief in a flat earth." Then he linked to my book Unapologetic: Why Philosophy of Religion Must End. What's significant about this is that he's a biblical scholar, having earned his PhD in Biblical Studies from Boston University School of Theology. He kindly blogs here at DC and is the author of Ten Tough Problems in Christian Thought and Belief: A Minister-Turned Atheist Shows Why You Should Ditch the Faith, of which I was honored to write a Forward to it.

I've said repeatedly that I might be wrong, but no one can say I'm ignorant. After all, I have nearly the equivalent educational background of Dr. Paul Copan, the former President of the Evangelical Society. David Madison can say the same thing by the tenfold, especially seen in his fantastic book, online writings, podcasts and exhaustive reading list of atheist books in The Cure-For-Christianity Library. In his esteemed judgment, after years of studying it out, the evidence conclusively shows the Bible and any religion or theology or philosophy based on it, "deserves the same respect as astrology, alchemy, and belief in a flat earth." His most succinct case is made in a chapter for my recent anthology, The Case against Miracles.

When God Is on a Par with Donald Duck. Seriously.


Christianity: sabotaged by the Old Testament

“Where did my religious beliefs come from?” If only pious people bothered to ask this question—and were genuinely curious—they might not be so compliant. I once asked a devout Christian woman this question and was told, “From my mother”—whom she confessed, she is eager to see again in heaven. And the mother, of course, had learned the faith at her mother’s knee. That seemed to satisfy this woman in terms of authenticating the faith.

Did she suppose that the faith had been handed down, uncorrupted, from mother to daughter, for the 50 or so generations since it had been proclaimed by the original Peter, Paul and Mary? Just skip all the councils, wars, heresy trials, and schisms that have made Christianity what it is today, all 30,000 versions of it.

Dr. Jaco Gericke - Confessions of a Died-Again Christian

Jaco was interviewed on the Point of Inquiry program recently. Enjoy. Click on the tag below for more from him.

Jaco Gericke: Fundamentalism on Stilts: A Devastating Response to Alvin Plantinga's Reformed Epistemology

[Written by John W. Loftus] Being a philosopher of religion specializing in the analysis of ancient religions and a biblical scholar to boot, Dr. Gericke has written what can be considered a refutation of Plantinga's Reformed Epistemology. "The trouble with Craig and and Plantinga," he tells me, "is that their philosophy of religion conveniently ignores the problems posed for their views by the history of Israelite religion. They might as well try to prove Zeus exists. People sometimes forget 'God' used to be Yahweh and it is possible to prove from textual evidence that 'there ain't no such animal.'"

Jaco Gericke on "The Collapse of Realism, Cognitive Dissonance and the 'Died-Again' Christian Syndrome"

Previously I posted an amazing deconversion story written by Dr. Gericke right here. Then I posted something from him on how he got over his angst at leaving the Christian faith right here. In what follows he writes on the issue of cognitive dissonance (used with permission):

Dr. Gericke on How He Got Over the Difficulty of Losing His Faith

Previously today I posted his well-written deconversion story here. Now he wishes to explain how he came through that dark period in his life.

Dr. Jaco Gericke's Deconversion Story: "Autobiography of a 'Died-Again Christian'"

This is an appendix to his Ph.D. dissertation written in 2003, which he has granted me permission to share. Dr. Gericke is also writing a chapter for my work in progress. Listen up Christian, does this sound like a person who wanted to reject God? No way in hell! It is the story of us all. We wanted the gospel to be true. We put our whole lives into serving God. It is quite literally life shattering to find out we were wrong. What you'll read below also describes why it's so damned hard to help Christians see their faith for the delusion it is. It's because you want it to be true. It's because it would be life-shattering for you to admit you're wrong.