I have recently acquired a great interest in listening to philosophy of religion podcasts. My favourite podcast is the Beretta Podcast over at Say Hello to my Little Friend. My interest in the Beretta-cast came about after I clicked on a link on Facebook to a podcast on the notorious Zeitgeist ‘documentary’ and discovered it was created by none other than our close family friend, Glenn Peoples.
I first encountered Zeitgeist when my biological father showed it to me as an attempt to dissuade me from my faith 3 years ago when I was 13. He said it was a ground breaking and shocking devastator of religion. I found some of the claims interesting and at first glance compelling but at other points it was ridiculously far-fetched like when it claimed Horus was the “lamb of God” and “the bread of life”. My sister had studied Egyptology in some depth and had shared a lot of her knowledge with me so I strongly doubted that the Horus claims were correct. I have since encountered kids at my school who referred to claims made in Zeitgeist during debates I had with them over the case for Christianity.
So seeing a podcast examining the claims made by the movie was therefore compelling – especially on seeing who the author was. It was fantastic. I have listened to it now 6-7 times, I have played it for several of my friends and I even spent one lonely afternoon transcribing most of it so I could respond to a comment made by a sceptic on an animation forum.
After listening to Glenn’s Zeitgeist podcast, I immediately wanted more. I have since downloaded and listened to most of the 40 episodes on Say Hello to my Little Friend. I have listened to other podcasts too but the Beretta-cast remains my favourite by far.
A Beretta-cast episode is often hilarious and always offers a straightforward and fair analysis of the topic in some detail (Glenn’s badass original music at the start of each episode is pretty mean too!). Each podcast episode varies from giving an overview of a particular Christian view in a field or a cutting critique of Atheistic hostility towards the Christian faith. Given the intellectually engaging nature of the content contained, I advise anyone and everyone interested in these topics to check this podcast out!
Below, I have made a list of 10 of my favourite Beretta-cast episodes below along with some comments on the highlights of each particular one.
Stop Being A Christian and Start being a Person
I love listening to this one – I have listened to it half a dozen times – because the point of this episode is mainly directed at issues within the Christian community itself. This episode outlines how some Christians approach real life situations with an almost superficial view on what makes for a quality piece of music, literature or even a person. It really hits the nail on the head.
Is Abortion Immoral, and Should it be Illegal?
I find this episode to be very amusing (strange for this subject I know!) and very compelling. It outlines some key aspects of philosophy and applies these principals to Ethics with some hilarious analogies.
Why Become an Athiest?
This episode is just plain brilliant. It shows us how even if atheism were true, a sceptic of the Christian faith would have no reason to try to convince a Christian that we are wrong in our beliefs. It is within atheism’s interests to let us believe what we want.
Breaking the (Obama) Spell
This episode gives some very good insight into American politics. Not only does it show us how silly human perceptions on political issues can become when one is caught up in media frenzy but it also gives a clear perspective on what President Barack Obama has actually contributed to America.
The Argument from Atrocity
Another great episode. Glenn pulls no punches here in his attack on one of the ‘four horsemen’ of the new-atheism, Christopher Hitchens, and his argument from atrocity. This episode is clear-cut with devastatingly sharp criticism of Hitchens’s propositions.
Imagine there’s no Heaven
I found this one to be a real eye-opener. Like the first episode I listed, this episode is more of an internal criticism of some big ideas that float around through Christian circles about the afterlife. Specifically it touches on whether we have floaty souls that fly around on the 11th dimension after death or not.
Another great podcast. Although this one is pretty straightforward, it is one of those ones that always draws my attention because of the clarity is speaks into the debate.
Plantinga and Properly Basic Beliefs
This episode gives a good overview over Alvin Plantinga’s idea of properly basic beliefs and how this applies to Christianity. This episode has excellent philosophy content.
Zeitgeist: The Movie
Yes, some people actually believe this stuff! This is a long one but Glenn does a fantastic job at ripping this movie to shreds. I recommend it to anyone who thinks that Zeitgeist should be given any weight at all as a documentary.
Sam Harris, Science and Morality
This one is rather amusing as Glenn continually points out many of the mistakes that Sam Harris makes in his reasoning by using audio clips from a talk he gave at TED. This podcast provided some good ‘preparation’ for when I listened to Sam Harris’s recent debate with William Lane Craig.
So what are you waiting for? Dive in, start listening to the Beretta-cast today. I promise you’ll be hooked!