Skip to main content


Showing posts from October, 2012

Public talk in Ghent, Belgium on Wednesday

"Does God exist?" - professor Stephen Law (Heythrop College University of London) alle activiteiten Wat Lezing Wanneer 31-10-2012 van 20:00 tot 23:00 Waar Zebrastraat 32, 9000 Gent Organisator Vakgroep Wijsbegeerte & Moraalwetenschap & Onderzoeksgroep The Moral Brain Contact of     Dr. Stephen Law presents a novel challenge to belief in an all-powerful, all-good God. Law's "Evil God challenge" has been discussed widely on the internet, and featured in a high profile debate with Christian apologist William Lane Craig. It offers a novel and entertaining way of bringing out the irrationality of this traditional brand of theism. If you believe in an all-powerful, all-good God, dare you take the "Evil god challenge"? Stephen Law is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at Heythrop College University of London, editor of the Royal Institute of

Rock climbing yesterday

Went rock climbing in Cornwall and took this short video clip yesterday afternoon, looking down Flannel Avenue, on Chair Ladder cliffs, very close to Land's End. Tom Pilling climbing upper section and abseiling down to start of route in the photos below.

Heythrop College Open Day Wed 31st Oct

To book your place at this event at my own college, or find out more, go here . 12.00 -15.30pm. You'll be able to see the facilities on offer and speak to staff and students to find out more about studying and student life . Please view our Open Day programme (.pdf) and book your place. You'll be able to see the facilities on offer and speak to staff and students to find out more about studying and student life . If you have any queries about undergraduate open days or foundation degree open evenings please contact us at or by telephoning 020 7795 4124

I am tutor for admission BA Philosophy at Heythrop (repeat post)

I happen to be tutor for admission for the BA in philosophy at Heythrop College University of London. If you want to find about more about our BA programme, or an evening MA in philosophy, get in touch (email address is in the header to this page). Obviously with the new fees system, all colleges are focusing on recruitiment, and so are we of course. Obviously we're not as well known as some other colleges. But we are quite exceptional. So here are a few facts about Heythrop you might be interested in, if you're thinking about pursuing a degree in Philosophy or Theology. (1) Heythrop is the University of London college that specializes in just Philosophy and Theology. It's all we do. (2) Heythrop students achieve remarkably good results, despite our comparatively modest entry requirements. We have outperformed other better known colleges in terms of number of first class hons degrees achieved, for example (3) This is because, astonishingly, Heythrop r

Event (arranged by myself) tomorrow with Chris French, Andy Lewis, etc. - see some of you there I hope

CFI UK and Conway Hall present HEALING POWERS OF THE MIND? Chris French, Andy Lewis, Mike Heap, Serena Roney-Dougal Do some people have the power to heal others by psychic means? Would medicine benefit by being more aware of our “spiritual” dimension? Where do psychic and spiritual approaches to medicine end and quackery begin? Does hypnosis work, and if so, how? Does meditation offer real benefits – and if so, what are they? Saturday, 20 th October 2012 Conway Hall 25 Red Lion Square London WC1R 4RL 11am-4pm (10.30am registration) £10 (£5 students concessions). Free entry for Friends of CFI UK. Tickets from the BHA website now or on the door. Speakers: 11am-12.00 Chris French (Professor of Anomolistic Psychology at Goldsmiths) on psychic healing 12.00-1pm Serena Roney-Dougal (parapsychologist and Director of the Psi Research Centre) "Is long-term meditation related to psychic awareness?" 2-3pm Michael Heap ( Clinical

Myself talking with Peter Atkins, Richard Swinburne, Ard Louis (and Richard Dawkins)

Here is a fairly long video of a discussion between myself, Richard Swinburne (philosopher), Peter Atkins (chemist), Ard Louis (physicist), and also Richard Dawkins (who was in the audience) at one point. The theme was Life, The Universe and Everything - The Quest for Truth . My main contribution is at 39 mins 30sec. (nb. Dawkins is at 1hr 18 min 20 sec [he has a pop at Swinburne and me] and my response to Dawkins at 1hr 24 min 30 sec). I posted on this before, shortly after the recording. Go here . This included quite a good discussion on the nature and value of philosophy, I thought.

Heavy Dexters live at Bullingdon Arms last week...(me on drums)

Problem of Induction explained simply... (from my book The Philosophy Gym)

Why Expect the Sun to Rise Tomorrow? Philosophy Gym category: Warm up Moderate More challenging Every morning we expect the sun to appear over the horizon. But according to one the philosopher David Hume (1711-76, our expectation is wholly irrational. This chapter gets to grips with Hume’s extraordinary argument.  An absurd claim? MacCruiskeen, a scientist,is watching the sunrise. She’s accompanied by her close friend Pluck, a student of philosophy. Pluck. Beautiful sunrise. MacCruiskeen. Yes. And right on time too. Pluck. Yet there was no good reason to expect it to rise this morning MacCruiskeen. But the sun has risen every morning for millions of years. Of course it was going to rise this morning as well. Pluck. There’s no reason to suppose it will rise tomorrow, either. In fact it’s just as sensible to expect that a huge million-mile wide bowl of tulips will appear over the horizon instead. [ILLUSTRATION: A TULIP SUNRISE] MacCruiskeen

Following Osborne's latest suggestion, here's a further modest proposal

George's Osborne's new proposal to let workers sell off their employment rights to employers reminded me of this Swiftian satire from 2010... A Modest Proposal to Transition to a "Cater to the Rich" Economy Thursday 09 December 2010. Source here . by: Dan DiMaggio, t r u t h o u t | Satire In an article in The New York Times titled "Some Very Creative Economic Fix-Its," New York University economics professor Andrew Caplin calls for workers to put their stakes in a "cater to the rich" economy. (1) According to Caplin, growing inequality is a fact of life in the future of the US and global economy - "some people will succeed and others will not." Rather than judging this to be bad or good, the poor and middle class would do best by trying to "understand the needs" of the wealthy and attempting to provide services to meet their demands. Rand Paul recently expressed a sim

My New Kid's Book is On Sale Now!

My new kids book is on sale! Go and buy it! Science, philosophy and skeptical primer age 12+. Endorsed by the Science Museum. amazon U.S. amazon U.K.

CFI UK: Upcoming event with Richard Carrier (on Historical Jesus etc.)

This should be a really interesting talk (organized by myself for CFI UK) from one of the world's leading skeptics. He is the author of a controversial new book on the quest for the historical Jesus. Hope to see some of you there... Richard Carrier: Bayes' Theorem and Historical Reasoning: How Historical Methods Can Be Improved and Why They Need to Be 16th November 2012 Stamford Street Lecture Theatre 7.30pm - 9pm (7.00pm registration) Drawing from his new book Proving History: Bayes's Theorem and the Quest for the Historical Jesus (Prometheus, 2012), Dr. Carrier will explain what Bayes' Theorem is (in terms anyone can understand), how it underlies all valid historical methods even when we don't realize it, and why knowing this can improve historical reasoning and argument in all fields of history. £7 - General £5 - Students / BHA members Free - "Friends of CFI"(and LAAG) Venue Stamford Street Lecture Theatre