The Thinking Christian blog ends the year ranked at number 20 among religion blogs on the Internet, and number 73 among all blogs in the “Living” category, according to the premier ranking service Technorati. Those rankings bounce around a lot, based on who has linked here recently. Without your encouragement as readers, I never would have gotten this thing off the ground. Thank you, and Happy New Year to you.
Here are some highlights from 2011:
Most Books Bang for the Buck
If a blog post’s success is measured by the discussion it kicks off, the lesson of this year might be, never write anything longer than fifty words. Two posts totalling fify words, most of which I had quoted from elsewhere, generated 787 comments between them, totaling over 135,000 words of discussion. That’s two good-sized books’ worth! Did you know you had done that? Those two posts were:
- “On naturalism, or: Good and bad extrapolations in science | Uncommon Descent”
- On New Atheists and Reason, Craig v. the Empty Chair
(Maybe the real lesson is, start all headlines with “On n…”)
So from now on I promise to keep all posts under 100 words. (Hah!)
My Most Visited 2011 Blog Post…
… was one I wrote on June 7, 2009. “Did God Commit Genocide in the Bible?” has gained high search engine placement, and people are asking that question every day. I mean every day. Two and a half years later it’s still averaging eleven reads a day, and there hasn’t been a day since I wrote it when it didn’t get at least one visit. It’s a hot topic.
I have no idea which post written this year got the most traffic. I can’t parse that out of my statistics trackers.
My Favorite Discovery of the Year
Of everything I’ve found, reposted, and commented on this year, my favorite discovery has been from Discover magazine, where a physicist named Bernard Carr said, “If you don’t want God, you’d better have a multiverse.” I just love how clearly he stated the issues and motivations there.
I’ve already mentioned one blog post on New Atheists and “reason.” They keep emphasizing this reason thing. I don’t know why, considering they’re so bad at it. Seriously.
Elsewhere I wrote Something Odd About the Founder of Project Reason, the odd thing being Sam Harris’s determined avoidance of reason during his debate with William Lane Craig. Here on this blog I also wrote Sam Harris: Where Reason Fails, Resort to Dogma, and I called out Jerry Coyne more than once for what appears either to be culpable ignorance or intellectual dishonesty. There’s more of the same ahead; see below.
My Most Damaging Admission
Oops. Coyne was right after all.
My Most Original Thoughts (And Therefore Most Likely To Be Wrong)
I developed—or at least introduced—two new arguments here this year: a Divine Hiddenness Argument for Christianity, and Regularism: A Better Alternative to Methodological Naturalism. Someday, maybe, I’ll build them into something to publish.
What’s Ahead for 2012?
Richard Dawkins and other New Atheists are hosting a “Reason Rally” in Washington, D.C. on March 24, 2012. I’m working with a team of writers to prepare something in advance to expose their previously-mentioned weakness on reason. I’ll let you know more about that as the time approaches, but in the meantime I would ask for your prayers.
There may still be room for another contributor or two on this project. If you want to know more, send me a side message.
One Last Opportunity for 2011
Thank you again for your readership, your messages and emails of encouragement (they mean a lot to me!), and your participation in the discussions. I can go a long way on that! There’s one last opportunity for you to contribute in one further, important way: financial support for this work, and for the extended apologetics/worldview/strategy work I do beyond this blog.
As we approach the end of the year we are significantly below our financial needs and goals, and your contribution could certainly help us with that, but I don’t want to present that as a motivation for you to give.
Rather, if this blog has helped or encouraged you, or if you share my conviction that it’s about helping others know Christ more confidently and truly, I would suggest that as your reason to join in and support this ministry financially.
Thank you, and once again, Happy New Year!