Video of Morality in a Secular Society: A Dialogue between a Christian and an Atheist

Back in the fall, I had the opportunity to coach and help our female key student leader, Alexa Blakney, organize a dialogue in partnership with the University of Toronto Secular Alliance. My colleague Peter Kupisz represented the Christian position. Here is the video and the description is below.


For an atheist, morality can and should be deduced through human thought alone. The solution to moral problems in society can come from working through the facts and employing reason and logic.

For a Christian, God is the ultimate source of morality. When issues of morality arise in society, moral decisions are made by using logic, evidence, conscience, tradition, and ultimately God’s principles as revealed in the Scriptures.

Which worldview is better for society? Are there moral statements that are true no matter what anyone thinks? If so, what is the source of this morality? If not, then whose morality should be given priority in public policy? Is belief in God necessary to live a moral life? What do we do with the morality we have inherited from Canada’s Judeo-Christian heritage? Should moral decisions legislated into law in a secular state be based off of religious principles, or not? What place (if any) should this morality have in contemporary society?

Following the talk there was a Question & Answer Period (Q&A), so please bring your questions, your doubts, and your objections to this important conversation.


PETER KUPISZ has an MA in Philosophy of Religion and Ethics from Biola University and an MA in the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology from the University of Toronto. He worked as an Adjunct Professor of Philosophy at Biola University and as a full-time Instructor at Dongju College in South Korea. He enjoys discussing and dialoguing about the most pressing issues of our day on Facebook and in real life.

MIKHAIL IVANOV: Mike Ivanov is the current University of Toronto Secular Alliance (UTSA) president. He’s a History specialist going into OISE to pursue his Masters of Teaching. He also happens to be a national chess master and teacher, representing Canada in Olympiads and World Youth Championships. Mike likes to discuss issues of importance to students at University of Toronto, and would like to create an atmosphere of intellectual discussion on campus.


CAMERON PROCTOR is the emeritus vice-president of the UTSA, husband and a senior PhD in Physical Geography at the University of Toronto, where he studies below ground carbon deposition and methanogensis. For the past several years, Cameron has studied the arguments for and against theism, yet finds more comfort in science, empiricism and the human condition. An avid cyclist and science fiction consumer, Cameron finds little time for these activities as he pursues his academic career.

This event was co-hosted by the University of Toronto Secular Alliance (UTSA) and Power to Change (P2C).

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