Protecting the constitutional principle of the separation of state and church
Freethought Radio

Online writings by Dan Barker

NOTE: Because of a website change, some of these links are broken, noted by an asterisk. We are trying to update these links as soon as possible.

Dan's story
God's existence
Morality/ethics
Freethought
The Bible
State/Church Separation
Famous Freethinkers

Dan's Story

* I Just Lost Faith In Faith
A short version of Dan's story of deconversion to atheism, after 19 years of preaching.
"Losing Faith in Faith" talk
Listen to Dan's talk on June 27th 2001 at the Calkins Science Center, Grand Rapids Community College, Michigan. [1:14:00, mp3 29.6MB]
* Ripples
Reactions to Dan's announcement of atheism, after 19 years of preaching.
Radio interview about "Losing Faith In Faith"
Neal Dionne Show with guest Dan Barker on WOOD Radio 1300AM, June 25, 2001. 47:15 run time barker.rm (5.9mb, RealMedia Player Format) or barker.mp3 (11.3mb). Set up by the Freethought Association of West Michigan.

God's Existence

* Dear Theologian
A challenge to traditional theists.
The Freewill Argument for the Nonexistence of God
This argument (FANG, for short) is one of the "incoherency" approaches Barker took against John Morehead in Sacramento (August 1996) and Douglas Wilson in Delaware (March 1997). If a religious term such as "god" or "spirit" cannot be defined meaningfully, then it is pointless to argue if it exists.
Debate: "Does God Exist?"
February 29, 2000 debate between Dan Barker and Phil Fernandes at Bellevue Community College (Washington). (MP3, 1:50, 12.6MB) (Video of debate available at ffrf.org/shop)
Debate: "Does God Not Exist?"
January 2003 debate between Dan Barker and Hassanain Rajabali at the Islamic Institute of New York.
Debate: "Evolution and Intelligent Design: What are the issues?"
Listen to a debate between Dan Barker and John Rankin, May 5, 2006, at the New Testament Church in Plymouth, Massachusetts. This is a general discussion between two non-scientists on the philosophical and theological implications of "Intelligent Design." (MP3, 2:15:50, 62.18MB)
* The Debates Continue
An article about three of Dan's debates in early 1999.
* Mere Assertions
Brief critique of C. S. Lewis' Mere Christianity.
* Refuting God
Brief atheistic responses to theistic arguments.

Morality/Ethics

* Salvation
World Religions Conference speech on the topic of "Salvation."
Debate: "Does Ethics Require God?"
Listen to the debate between Dan Barker and Peter Payne at the University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point, March 14, 2005.
How to be moral without religion
Listen to Dan's talk at the University of Minnesota, October 19, 2006, sponsored by CASH (Campus Atheists and Secular Humanists):
Lecture
Questions from the audience
* Believers Are No Better
Are the daily lives of Christians better than non-Christians? According to sociological surveys by a born-again pollster, they are actually worse than non-Christians.
* Survey Reveals Polling Bias
Based on a careful sociological survey, Church attendance reports are found to be exaggerated. Though 40% of Americans regularly claim to attend church weekly, less than 20% actually show up in the pews.

Freethought

* What Is A Freethinker?
What is freethought, and how do freethinkers think?

How To Talk To a Fundamentalist

How To Talk To a Fundamentalist, Part 1
How To Talk To a Fundamentalist, Part 2
* Evangelistic Atheism: Leading Believers Astray
Advice to freethinkers on how to talk with a believer.
Radio Interview
A November 2002 radio interview with Dan Barker and a Christian host. (Click above to read it. Click here to listen to the interview in mp3 format.)
The Future of Religion
Dan's keynote speech at the "Humanity 3000 Seminar 4," August 22, 2003, sponsored by the Foundation For the Future.
Interview with UU-Infidels
Interviewed by Marilyn Westfall, Dan talks about unbelief in the Unitarian-Universalist fellowship. From Vol. 1, Issue 1, Spring 2004, of In Search of Reason, newsletter of the Unitarian Universalist Infidels. (offsite)
The Rising of the Women
Does the New Testament teach that women must be subservient to men?
* Christian Terrorism in Oklahoma City
Why was Timothy McVeigh not called a "Christian Terrorist"?
* Foundation Nontract Now "Classic" Literature
PalmPilot includes "Dear Believer" in its "classic" offerings.
* Freethought and Prime-Time Television
"Is religion getting a fair shake on television? That question was addressed at a June UCLA conference in Santa Monica, California: 'Religion And Prime Time Television.' . . ."
Unbelievers and Prime Time Television
Chapter from Religion And Prime Time Television.
* The Color Purple
Dan Barker and Steve Benson discuss religion with a Navajo Mormon..
* Spring is the Reason for the Season
The natural origin of Easter..

The Bible

* Why Jesus?
Are the teachings and deeds of Jesus admirable?
* Bible Contradictions
A challenge to inerrantists, listing several biblical discrepancies.
Debate: "Is the Bible full of errors and deceit?"
Listen to a debate between Dan Barker and John C. Rankin, March 5, 2006.
Did Paul's Men Hear a Voice?
Examines one bible contradiction in detail: Acts 9:7 vs. Acts 22:9.
* Debunking the historical Jesus
Did Jesus actually exist? (Josephus, Pliny, Tacitus, Suetonius, etc.)
Did Jesus Really Rise From The Dead?
First appeared in Abuse Your Illusions: The Disinformation Guide To Media Mirages and Establishment Lies.
Debate:* Did Jesus Rise From The Dead?
Transcript of the 1996 debate between Dan Barker and Michael Horner at the University of Northern Iowa. Includes audience questions.
The "Easter Answer" Answered
This article is a reply to pastor Stephen Kingsley's 2008 book, The Easter Answer, claiming to have answered Dan's "Easter challenge" (as it appears in Losing Faith in Faith).
* Gays, Marriage, and the Bible
One of Dan's "Pagan Pulpit" commentaries on Freethought Radio, reprinted in Freethought Today.
* Harvard Debate
Brief write-up of a debate with Dinesh D'Souza at Harvard, April 2008. Examines D'Souza's claim that Galatians 3:28 supports universal equality. (Includes link to video of the debate.)
* Leave No Stone Unturned
Points out some of the internal discrepancies in the resurrection story.
* Donkeys & Dragons
The Genesis story is a fable because it contains a talking animal. Based on a debate with Dr. Walter Kaiser. This is a short version of "Serpentine Logic" (below).
Serpentine Logic
The Genesis story is a fable because it contains a talking animal. Based on a debate with Dr. Walter Kaiser. A shorter version of this article is "Donkeys & Dragons" (above). Appeared in The Skeptical Review.
With Perfect Hatred
Challenges the often-heard Christian claim that the Bible teaches believers to "hate the sin but love the sinner."
* Tithing for Dummies
Why are Christians told to tithe 10% to the church?

State/Church Separation

* Is America a Christian Nation?
Briefly examines state/church separation, answering some of the questions about our secular nation.
* Creationist Wolf in Cheap Clothing
If Bush truly wants to "expose people to different schools of thought," will he advocate teaching Darwinism in Sunday School? Shall we insert a chapter from Origin of the Species between Genesis 1 and 2? . . .
Peace On Earth?
December 2007: "The Freedom From Religion Foundation hears from a lot of people this time of year, especially when we complain about Nativity scenes on government property...."
* Divided, We Stand
Post 9/11 and "United, We Stand," whatever happened to E Pluribus Unum?
* It's All Showbiz
Ten Commandments markers are phony movie props.
* "License to Kill"
[1994 article about Christian Science exemptions] ". . . In many states, children have died while the parents have been immune from child abuse or manslaughter charges. Some of the Christian Science children known to have died from easily treatable illnesses include . . ."

Famous Freethinkers

* Brahms, the Freethinker
"Music Was his Religion." Johannes Brahms, the famous German composer, did not believe in a god.
* The Forgotten Story of Luther Burbank
Famous horticulturalist Luther Burbank was a declared "infidel." His death in 1926 may have been hastened by the controversy over his views.
* Irving Berlin the Agnostic: Patriotism Was His Religion
How many patriotic Americans, proudly singing "God Bless America," realize that the song they are intoning was written by a man who did not believe in God? Or that it was intended as an anti-war anthem? . . .
* Yip Harburg: Secular Songwriter
The man who wrote "Somewhere Over the Rainbow," "It's Only A Paper Moon," "Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?" and hundreds of popular American songs was a freethinker who abhorred irrationality, war and discrimination.
* Cole Porter Out of Both Closets?
"Two major motion pictures have been made about the life of American songwriter Cole Porter. . . The more recent 'De-Lovely' . . . opening with a frank (and refreshing) admission by Porter that he did not believe in a god."
* Sagan's Billions & Billions
Tribute to atheist and scientist Carl Sagan