Atheist Experience 22.48 with Matt Dillahunty & Geoff Blackwell

Views:46666|Rating:4.82|View Time:2:37:7Minutes|Likes:1456|Dislikes:55
35:50 Jonathan: AZ: Morality, Chess, Well-Being
1:01:35 Sean: Fort Bragg, NC: Weak vs Strong Atheism, Probability of God’s Existence
1:20:45 Jacob: WA: Evidence, Burden of Proof, Arguments from Authority, God’s Manifestation
1:56:25 Gerry: Seattle, WA: Christian ACA Member’s God/Devil Visions (possible troll)
2:16:50 Ronald: Houston, TX: Getting Through to Religious Parents
2:29:20 Jesse: NY: Is It Worthwhile to Talk To Family About Religion?

The Atheist Experience episode 22.48 for December 2, 2018, with Matt Dillahunty and guest Geoff Blackwell. American Athests.

Geoff Blackwell is an attorney for American Atheists:

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45 Responses

  1. 1999 says:

    My name Geoff

  2. René Olguín says:

    I have never seen any evidence for the non existence of Zeus 😀

  3. Michael Purser says:

    "I did a moral action or I did an immoral action" is a false dichotomy that isn't obvious. It was very well explained in CosmicSkeptic's video on homosexuality.

  4. whynottalklikeapirat says:

    I am a fiscal creature in a fiscal universe

  5. Bozhidar Balkas says:

    @Afekhide Afekhide According to NT scribes, God and Satan 'live' in an infinitely large 'area' that is timeless, spaceless, matterless, and lightless. In such an 'existence' [i am using words under single quotes to prove the fact that nothing in God's 'universe' lives, breathes, eats, thinks, talks, or exists]. Bible is crystal clear on this data. And obviously, even if God is hunting Satan to destroy him, God has to hunt for him in a pitchdark and infinity 'domain'
    Alas, Good may not ever find him in a pitchdark 'domain'. Ok these news may hurt people? But needs not, if one evaluates what the Bible says is in toto a no-sense or a no-thingness. Myth it was; myth it is now and only ''explainable' by never-ending adduction of mythological 'explanations'. This scares a lot of people.

  6. Keatrith Amakiir says:

    If Gerry isn't a troll he should speak with a therapist. I worry for the guy 🙁

  7. Bubba Tao says:

    Sean; There is a naturalistic presumption to everything because that's what we must live in. Until someone can demonstrate "something" else. over and above, and/or extra, we presume it's not there. Faith is just guessing. And we should only guess when there is no other choice.

  8. Pisstake says:

    Sye Bukakke and Ray Cumfart are the greatest apologeticks!

  9. Bubba Tao says:

    "Everyone knows what is evil." Everyone who knows the language. Evil is word humans invented to describe thing we humans really hate. So of course evil objectively evil. It objectively fits the definition we created. Duh!

  10. Cor B says:

    Hey, a fellow jurist! Geoff Blackwell, good to see you doing work for the good guys.

    Illegitimi non carborundum

    (don’t let the bastards grind you down)

  11. Robert Witt says:

    Man, love the channel and Matt of course but the intro song is so cringy.

  12. Jim Merrilees says:

    I watch every week and catch up on the odd occasion I miss the show…Quite frankly I am a bit disappointed of late……..some of the callers are just a waste of time and the hosts seem to let the calls last too long when they know they are going nowhere…..I admire the patience and politeness shown but wow less is more……let them make their point within a reasonable time ……reply and move on……it would allow more callers and stop us getting bored…..I also think that there are too few women callers…I find that female callers tend to be more interesting if not more intelligent that the average idiot theist the show attracts….

  13. Version .Four says:

    2:06:10 You're not going to believe this BUT………………….a this point I burst out laughing.

  14. Daniel M. Edwards says:

    The Atheist Experience is my new church now….though the word church is used ever so sarcastically. Thanks for all your work and believing in yourself

  15. Gandalf says:

    Gerry has emotional problems.

  16. Ksavage Animations says:

    Jesus was Asian.

  17. ian harvey says:

    Gerry sounds like a nutter or a Christo troll

  18. Alex Hamilton says:

    We miss you Matt. You're not on Atheist Experience enough.

  19. Dirk Plankchest says:

    It sounds to me like Gerry went through a traumatic experience that spurred on a psychological delusions, and the poor guy is still suffering from an experience he can't understand even now after his mind seems to have recovered.

  20. Gabe Lastname says:

    This section of a paper I just wrote for a metaethics class may help Jonathan:

    To suggest that a subjective moral system is “dangerous and subversive of morality” is to say that, in the case morality is entirely a system of hypothetical imperatives, then there is no desire-independent reason an agent has to be moral. A colloquial rebuttal might be: “Well morality is completely subjective then; if people don’t have a desire-dependent reason to act morally then they don’t have to, just like if I don’t have a desire-dependent reason to wear clothing in public, I don’t have to. If morality has any meaning, some things must be morally right or wrong regardless of subjective desires”. In other words, a desire-independent reason to act morally must exist if morality is to have any value. What could produce a reason for acting external to the subjective desires of an individual, other than an entity with absolute moral authority? (Jonathan would say this is God). It follows that without some external reason to act morally independent of both desire and rationality, we are justified in claiming morality is at some level subjective. Why is it that some philosophers (and Jonathan) posit morality as meaningless without this external reason for acting morally, despite there being no evidence for such an external reason to exist? The default position should be to not accept the existence of external reasons for acting until such time as they have been demonstrated to exist. We only have evidence to support that reasons for acting are internal in that they are desire-dependent. We must then assume that morality is a system of hypothetical imperatives dependent entirely upon these subjective desires, until such time as we can demonstrate the existence of an external reason for acting morally. However, objective moral systems can arise out of subjective desires. Given an agreed upon subjective basis for evaluating the moral rightness or wrongness of actions (take wellbeing as this basis), we can then evaluate any given act to determine whether it is objectively right or wrong. It is certainly true that there is no external, objective reason to value wellbeing without making a circular appeal to wellbeing. Any agent who lacks this desire will have no reason to act morally. However, we could say the same about health, that an agent who does not desire to be healthy would not have reason to act in a way that maintains or increases their health. Yet the fact remains that drinking cyanide would be objectively detrimental to their health regardless of their desire, and failure to adopt health as an end in no way impacts the truth of this claim. Would we then call health subjective and thus meaningless because there are no external reasons for acting to increase health independent of one’s own subjective desire? Certainly not, and for this same reason morality is not meaningless simply because there are no desire-independent external reasons for acting morally.

    Why then would an agent without an externally imposed absolute morality still act morally? We could assume that humans have developed certain evolutionary advantageous tendencies like altruism that give rise to consistent moral beliefs, which would solve the problem through some sort of biological imperative. Or, in the case that humans only care about their own self-interests, that moral tendencies like altruism can be reached through purely selfish reasons. We can begin with the simple observation that people act to fulfill subjective desires, and that a desire common to most humans is increasing their own wellbeing. If humans did not value their own wellbeing, they would not exist as a species. If it is the case that an agent wants to increase their own wellbeing, and they believe that the best way to increase their own wellbeing is by increasing the wellbeing of those around them, then an agent has reason to act altruistically to increase their own wellbeing. Concerning the motivation for acting, altruism can act as an end goal if there is no perceived reward to the agent taking the action. Altruism becomes the desire, regardless of the underlying biological cause of the desire. This makes the strong case that given people realize that externally imposed absolute morality does not exist, they would still have reasons to act morally, and thus the moral systems that we have in place would remain unscathed. It seems then that those philosophers concerned with the “subversive nature” of a subjective basis for morality have no ground to stand on, as they consistently fail to demonstrate the truth of their own claims from the very start and fail to account for objective moral systems which can arise out of subjective desires. In the case of Jonathan, he can SAY that without an absolute moral foundation all morality is just a matter of opinion, but that is an absurdly reductionist point of view that doesn't stand up to even the most basic of scrutiny.

  21. Mike Wood says:

    Hey Matt! I usually just listen to the show via podcast, but… you’re lookin’ TRIM, buddy! Great work!

  22. Joseph Graney says:

    I was thinking about calling in. Wish I had.

  23. Jason Musser says:

    At the end of the day. At the end of the day. At the end of the day!!! Stop saying that!!!

  24. Kim Land says:

    "Haven't found sufficient evidence against Bigfoot, so therefore do you believe in Bigfoot?"
    Excellent new debate tactic. Thank you.

  25. Shar Mila says:

    Doubt Gerry is such an honest person as he claims. Clearly has never been an atheist. Just says he was because he thinks it makes him more believable to atheists.

  26. Norman Neskio says:

    If some insightful person had killed Hitler in let's say 1940, would that have been an immoral act? Absolute morality is an unsustainable stance.

  27. Norman Neskio says:

    We ought to be sincerely thankful to Christianity for giving us Morality. Can't imagine how people living outside Christian territory (most people in the world actually) have made it this far.

  28. David Hench says:

    how can these hosts be so hapless when it comes to cutting calls short???

  29. David Hench says:


  30. michael farrell says:

    Morality seems to me to be more about the means to goals rather than the goals themselves.

  31. Kay B says:

    Matt and Geoff: sounds like a classic cartoon series 🙂 Matt showed incredible patience during this show. I don't think I could have lasted as long with Gerry.

  32. joseph sullivan says:

    No one despises you Matt.

  33. Julian Castaneda says:

    Gerry is crazydumb.

  34. Julian Castaneda says:


  35. KoachKrab127 says:

    I wish they asked Gerry to define atheism. I could be wrong, but I think he's one of those people who think that atheism means "I'm a person who hates god." To say, "I'm an atheist who believes in god," doesn't make sense, unless you don't know what atheism is. And also, to say to a presence, that you believe to be God/Jesus "Go away, I'm dirty and unworthy," sounds like guilt for turning his back on god. The call was quite hilarious. The guy can barely put 2 sentences together without contradicting himself. That's a sign of a person who either is extremely dishonest or has not put much thought into what he believes, or both.

  36. David Schlessinger says:

    Notice Gerry's disposition, tone and responses RADICALLY change when he is confronted on the absurdity of his comments. He went from speaking nervously to clearly the instant Matt said 'enough is enough.'

  37. roberteb says:

    Everytime an atheist becomes religious, the average IQs of both groups rise.

  38. seven of 9 startrekie says:

    My Jesus has purple hair with some pink highlights, what's going on with Matt, why he entertained this guy, I miss "I have no time for bs Matt".

  39. AZI THE MLG PRO says:

    Matt looking slim

  40. seven of 9 startrekie says:

    When people talking about morality, they need to take a bit about the pharmaceutical business.

  41. unit 003 says:

    Gerry gets the Ray comfort award for stupidity this week

  42. Julian Castaneda says:

    Matt needs to stop Believing in nothingm

  43. Anon Anon says:

    Loved the call with Jacob, especially by the end. I think he's honestly thinking about it. He was a good caller, kind person, and it's real real hard to tear off that leach of religion. I hope he calls back and maybe is more ready to look at his preconceived notions.

  44. Amaranth says:

    I may be an atheist, but if Jesus was walking down the side of the road, I'd at least offer him a lift.

    One thing that struck me about Gerry's ambulance story is that when I was recently transported by ambulance, I felt a presence behind me and approaching me. I didn't cover my eyes, though, because I was aware it was an EMT working behind me.

    But it's interesting to note Stan drives American.

  45. Wes B says:

    Major hallucination.

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