162 episodes

Talk Heathen is a weekly call-in television show in Austin, Texas geared toward long-form and on-going dialogue with theists & atheists about religion, theism, & secularism. Call 1-512-686-0279 every Sunday from 1-2pm CDT. Talk Heathen is produced by the Atheist Community of Austin.

The Atheist Community of Austin is organized as a nonprofit educational corporation to develop & support the atheist community, to provide opportunities for socializing & friendship, to promote secular viewpoints, to encourage positive atheist culture, to defend the first amendment principle of government-religion separation, to oppose discrimination against atheists & to work with other organizations in pursuit of common goals.

Talk Heathen Atheist Community of Austin

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.4 • 41 Ratings

Talk Heathen is a weekly call-in television show in Austin, Texas geared toward long-form and on-going dialogue with theists & atheists about religion, theism, & secularism. Call 1-512-686-0279 every Sunday from 1-2pm CDT. Talk Heathen is produced by the Atheist Community of Austin.

The Atheist Community of Austin is organized as a nonprofit educational corporation to develop & support the atheist community, to provide opportunities for socializing & friendship, to promote secular viewpoints, to encourage positive atheist culture, to defend the first amendment principle of government-religion separation, to oppose discrimination against atheists & to work with other organizations in pursuit of common goals.

    Talk Heathen 05.03 01-17-2021 with Vi La Bianca and Katy Montgomerie

    Talk Heathen 05.03 01-17-2021 with Vi La Bianca and Katy Montgomerie

    Greetings Heathens! Hope all y’all are doing well out there, it’s Sunday, so that means it’s time for atheist church. In today’s episode of Talk Heathen, Vi La Bianca is joined by the absolutely amazing Katy Montgomerie. Welcome back to the co-host seat Katy, we are so glad you are here.
    Let’s get to calls! Paul in Texas would like to talk about how he has proof or evidence of an omnipotent being which leads from deism to theism. He has a step by step process in showing this evidence even! By proving this, he hopes to completely disprove atheism as well. Oooooh, this should be fun, if we can just get through his preamble/definitional stage!
    Tom in California is up next, they are seeking some advice on their recent deconversion. After deconverting, what is the next step? First of all, congratulations and welcome to the community! Secondly, it really depends on your needs and if you’re inclined to, continue researching. Katy and Vi really dig into this.
    Nick in California is also a recently deconverted atheist and is curious about our take on near death experiences. This is an interesting conversation and really good to talk about, especially for newly deconverted atheists struggling with understanding natural processes.
    David in California is calling in asking about determinism and how it relates to free will if that’s such a thing. Vi asks really important questions; can you control the motivations that cause you to make choices? Where does free will come into play? And further, how does this pertain to religion or god?
    Hunter in Illinois is neither an atheist nor a theist. Ok, how? But he wants to talk about morality and if it’s worth it or not. The conversation evolves into a pascal’s wager type discussion, with Hunter hedging his bets on whether a god exists or not.
    Michael in Alabama is wondering about morality as well. He proposes we use the word ethics instead of morality when discussing these themes with theists. Ah, interesting concept, but will it work though?
    Up next, Carpe Diem in Colorado is calling in with a question that is likely to cause some interesting conversation and debate. Should doctors be forced to perform abortions? This question is odd though, what situation would there ever be where a doctor is forced to perform this procedure? If one doesn’t want to do it, there is likely another that can. However, this may be troublesome in highly legislated areas that are trying to make it impossible or improbable to get (i.e. within abortion deserts.)
    That’s our show for this week, please continue to be safe in your area, wear your mask, socially distance, flatten the curve. The world is better with you in it. See you next week!

    • 1 hr 32 min
    Talk Heathen 05.02 01-10-2021 with Eric Murphy and Ethan Micheal

    Talk Heathen 05.02 01-10-2021 with Eric Murphy and Ethan Micheal

    Greetings Heathens! Hope you all are having a pleasant new year so far, we are glad you are here! In today’s episode of Talk Heathen, Eric Murphy is joined by Ethan Micheal. Ethan is a friend of the show and we are really excited to have him here! Here’s his channel: https://www.youtube.com/yfnatheist
    Let’s get to calls! Joe from New York would like to talk about how he doesn’t think Atheists are choosing to use common sense when they analyze evidence for the existence of God. As requested, he gives the examples of how something can come from nothing and that personal miracles prove the existence of a deity. But how though?
    Jeff in Washington is up next, he is wondering about consciousness, integrated information theory, and the exchange of information within a conscious. Except he is anthropomorphizing this exchange that is basically chemical reactions. But how does this prove a deity?
    Macy in New York, is calling about mental health, religion, and existentialism. Eric is now very excited and looking forward to this conversation, it is totally his jam. How do we get over the fear of hell and the feeling of being all alone?
    Gage in Pennsylvania claims everything is ALIVE! He goes on to say that atoms are alive including the energy that powers atoms. But how can energy be alive? He is anthropomorphizing things as well. Oh my this guy! Sounds like deepity!
    Lucas in Brazil wants to chat about how to deal with arguments that use pseudoscience to justify the religious beliefs. He goes on to explain how within this belief, we attain a higher being status through a sort of evolution. It’s really weird. This is a good question, maybe using ‘Street Epistemology’ would be a great approach.
    Minh in California is wondering how we deal with hardships in life and suffering. How do we as secular folk deal with grief and grieving. It’s definitely a difficult process, but it’s unique to most of us. However, having others (or a community) to grieve with is incredibly helpful.
    That’s our show for this week, please continue to be safe in your area, wear your mask. The world is better with you in it. See you next week!

    • 1 hr 33 min
    Talk Heathen 05.01 01-03-2021 with Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca

    Talk Heathen 05.01 01-03-2021 with Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca

    Happy New Year Heathens! We are cautiously optimistic about the upcoming year, hope it turns out wonderful for us all. In today’s episode of Talk Heathen, Eric Murphy is joined by Vi La Bianca. #LaMurph
    Let’s get to calls! Sigmund (aka Canadian Catholic) from Canada would like to talk about the positive viewpoints Eric and Vi hold as humanists and naturalists. They decide to have a quid pro quo type of conversation, which is a somewhat different format for the show. Unfortunately, CC isn’t the most honest interlocutor to have this type of conversation, is incredibly condescending, and constantly interrupts both hosts. And you’re done.
    Adam in Texas is up next, is wondering if there is any way to view the Bible as a moral book and how slavery back then is different. The call evolves into a fairly nice conversation as a way to get to know them. Come to find out, Adam is a presup. Weeeeee!
    Emmet in Texas is calling about how to deal with death after deconverting. There is no wrong way to grieve. It may also be worth letting mom grieve in her way, even if it is diametrically different than yours.
    Patrick in Florida thinks that pantheism may be a better option and the science behind consciousness. He would like to talk about it with Eric and Vi. Just because pantheism sounds like a better option, it doesn’t mean it’s the only other choice. Ooooh, boy. This call is a bit wild and all over the place, Patrick doesn’t really listen and Eric gets a bit heated.
    Scott in California is calling about naturalistic pantheism and how atheist isn’t the right term to define Eric and Vi’s viewpoint. But which is really better though?
    Emmanuel in Texas is wondering about how a near death experience and suicidal thoughts due to wanting to be in heaven formed his theistic beliefs. We are glad you are still here Emmanuel, please seek help if you need it, but we are here for you if you need us once more.
    That’s our show for this week, please continue to be safe in your area, wear your mask. The world is better with you in it. See you next week!

    • 1 hr 32 min
    Talk Heathen 04.50 12-13-2020 with Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca

    Talk Heathen 04.50 12-13-2020 with Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca

    Greetings Heathens! This is the last live episode of Talk Heathen for 2020, and Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca are here and ready to hear from you!
    Let’s get to calls! Jonathan from Georgia has a friend who is questioning whether or not he believes. His unbelieving friend was experiencing chronic chest pains when a woman came into his place of work, prayed in Hebrew, and his chest pain went away. Eric explains that the placebo effect is a real means of pain reduction. Jonathan agrees with Eric and Vi that we should align our beliefs with the evidence presented to us, but doesn’t think all evidence is tangible.
    Fran in Colorado is up next. They’re an amputee and had a woman approach them in the store and offer to pray for them. This woman laid hands on them and started praying very loudly. When Fran explained their leg wasn’t going to grow back, she said “God can do anything.” While they were able to laugh it off, some people may be dealing with religious trauma and can’t shrug it off so easily. It is always unethical for evangelists to prey on people in vulnerable situations.
    Michael in Florida wants to know Eric and Vi’s take on people's supernatural claims in the present like demon possession or miracles. We need to first establish that god or another entity are possible causes. We know that mental disorders exist, epilepsy exists, and symptoms of these conditions may be attributed to demons. While “I don’t know” can be an uncomfortable answer, we have to examine possible answers from the types of causes that we know to be real before making any other conclusions.
    Next is John in Texas who says that if you are unable to understand the evidence, that is not the fault of the person explaining it to you, it is your fault for not comprehending the evidence. He says we choose to believe whatever we think best explains reality. The thing is, we cannot choose our beliefs. Our beliefs come about as a result of the evidence presented to us and how we evaluate that evidence. Sadly, John doesn’t want to engage honestly, but prefers to gaslight the hosts.
    Our last call for today is from Rande in California asked for a sign that wouldn’t be open to interpretation and had a dream that an old friend called him and Rande berated this friend for not being there for him.The next day, that same friend called him and the call went the same as the dream. Rande is disappointed that this might mean the biblical god is real because he thinks that god is immoral. But if this sign wasn’t open to interpretation, Rande wouldn’t have called in!
    That’s our show for this week, please continue to be safe in your area, wear your mask. The world is better with you in it. See you next week!

    • 1 hr 39 min
    Talk Heathen 04.49 12-06-2020 with Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca

    Talk Heathen 04.49 12-06-2020 with Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca

    Greetings Heathens! In today’s episode of Talk Heathen, we’ve got the dream team back #LaMurph! Eric Murphy and Vi La Bianca are here today and ready to hear from you!
    Let’s get to calls! Fran from Pennsylvania saw demons in the woods in their 20s. Their friends also described seeing a similar creature. Eric and Vi think it may be the result of pareidolia. Memories are also very malleable things, so the collection of stories in this friend group may have grown over time.
    Father John from Canada is up next, he’s called in before but this time he has brought us an argument! He wants to talk about the peripatetic axiom which says “nothing is in the intellect which was not first in the senses.” He rejects the axiom and wants to know if Eric and Vi accept it, but doesn’t want to discuss what he believes and why. He thinks he is justified in not using empirical evidence to justify his beliefs.
    Chrys in Pennsylvania wants to discuss the old earth and young earth creationist groups within the Orthodox Church. Chrys is not a young earther, nor does he believe in theistic evolution. Vi and Eric want to know how Chrys is helping to educate his fellow believers and support science.
    Skye from Colorado, a self described “struggling Christian” is hanging on to faith because of the Immanuel prayer and fear of the rapture. Eric explains that an argument from fear, while viscerally impactful, is not a good reason to believe in something. This sort of “stay with me or you’ll be punished” rhetoric is very similar to how abusive partners talk. The Immanuel Prayer appears to be a means of self-indoctrination. Both of these last threads are forms of emotional manipulation, forming a carrot and stick combo. Wanting to learn about your religion is not a crisis! Asking questions is a good thing.
    Jessica in New York wants progressive theists to recognize how their silence enables right-wing fundamentalists in the U.S. As someone who works with abused children, Jessica finds that theists who are personally opposed to abuses by the church are not willing to accept that they are culpable in supporting those abuses by supporting those organizations. We appreciate Jessica for all the work she does!
    Phil in Germany wants to point out that our ability to discuss things beyond our senses is limited by our language since languages rely on sensory experiences to explain things. His friend says that all religions are looking at the same god from different angles, but that ignores the mutually exclusive claims of different religions.
    That’s our show for this week, please continue to be safe in your area, wear your mask. The world is better with you in it. See you next week!

    • 1 hr 37 min
    Talk Heathen 04.48 11-29-2020 with Eric Murphy and Seth Andrews

    Talk Heathen 04.48 11-29-2020 with Eric Murphy and Seth Andrews

    Greetings Heathens! Settle in heathens, grab that cup of velvety smooth hot chocolate or coffee, Seth Andrews and his dulcet tones joins us today. I don’t know about you, but I love his voice and I love Eric’s voice, this episode should go down as our most ASMR show ever. Combined together with Eric, this should be a fantastic show!
    Let’s get to calls! Gerard from Connecticut would like to talk about to what degree can we reasonably believe and justify metaphysical claims. Unfortunately, we aren’t able to reasonably test these claims to prove them true without evidence. Using mathematics to prove this isn’t helpful, math is a language used to describe symbols, is also a scientific process, and isn’t a way to prove metaphysics.
    ALERT! We interrupt this episode for a prophecy about how God exists! Just kidding, we wanted to show a clip from an episode from August about how the UN will be taking over the US in November and Trump is nowhere to be found… except this prophecy hasn’t happened. NEXT!
    Sophie in Texas is up next, after experiencing a lot of loss over the years, they are seeing their mom succumbing to scams by “mediums” and isn’t sure what to do to help. Please don’t feel this is only your burden, it is not your mantle to carry, please reach out to our discord if you need any additional help working through this.
    Kathy in Pennsylvania is wondering about folks calling themselves Christian and acting contrary to that. She starts talking towards the ‘No True Scotsman’ territory but stops herself. She knows all the lingo! Seth summarizes her thoughts in the amazing storyteller way that he does.
    Jonathan in London is asking about how to support his theist believing wife when she says she is being punished for some spiritual infraction. He is seeking advice on how to best help her through this. Seth is able to hop in and provides some great advice.
    Kevin in New York is calling back, says he doesn’t want to go down any rabbit holes. Sure you don’t… I’m a teeny bit skeptical about that. This time he would like to focus on the topic of skepticism and spiritual testimonies that people claim. Oh boy.
    Tim in the Czech Republic deconverted and left his cult and is nervous about talking about how he is shunned by his family to his friends around the holiday season. Seth is able to really provide some great steps in creating your family made of friends. Family isn’t always a blood relation, the family you choose is sometimes the best.
    That’s our show for this week, please continue to be safe in your area, wear your mask. The world is better with you in it. See you next week!

    • 1 hr 34 min

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5
41 Ratings

41 Ratings

Mark 928 ,

Great podcast- the hosts are incredibly patient.

A more laid back and longer format version of the atheist experience that encourages repeat callers and helps teach people how to think clearly.

The hosts are incredibly patient with the callers, and highlight the irrational thinking that inevitably surrounds theists.

They also provide great resources and information to those who suffer because of religion and who need support.

This is a community for atheists and a place for theists to better understand critical thinking. For all theists “we don’t hate you, we just think you’re wrong “

Boxman68 ,

Very good

This is a great pod cast

NicholasNamus ,

Voice Coach Required

This podcast is quite enjoyable except for one noticeable problem. Vi has a voice issue. She doesn’t project to the end of each sentence which results in a croak known as vocal fry. I’m not writing this to be nasty. I’m writing out of genuine concern. If she doesn’t learn to project, she could end up with throat problems as she gets older.

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