atheist news feeds
The evil atheist conspiracy
This was exemplified in the rampages of the Atheist Massacres of 1984, when Richard Dawkins went on a machete killing spree unto hundreds of concerned parents screaming “KILL KILL KILL FOR THE LOVE OF THE SELFISH GENE!!” Christopher Hitchens ...
Stop stereotyping Atheists!
It is for this reason that Wikipedia is so popular with the undergraduate 'I study science' atheist. The irony is that quoting proper sources is not something that requires one to be a professional scientist, or even a university graduate; it merely ...
It’s like he’s trying to think Deep Thoughts, but all he can do is belch stupid.
Why is "gay conversion therapy" so terrible that it must be banned but physical sex-change operations not? Seems a bizarre double-standard.
Maybe it’s that conservatives simply cannot comprehend the concept of consent?
He hasn’t changed a bit. John Kwok is bleating at Greg Laden now.
Would you believe he thinks he finally has a shot at getting that Leica M7 rangefinder camera?
Are atheists the most hated group in America? (Videos)
There is no way there are as many vocal atheists as there are preachers, pastors, priests, imams and religious gurus, but one atheist is trying to change that. Todd Stiefel, sounding very much like a televangelist himself, is on a mission to move ...
It feels like a different world. I like it.
are believers stupider than atheists?
We live in a society where atheists have long been shunned and disparaged. This is a contributing factor in why we see such a high percentage of people say they believe in God (95%?). Anytime you get a percentage that high, any stratification of ...
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TJ Luhrmann (remember her? Templeton grant awardee who likes to pretend religion is all sweetness and light?) is now defending speaking in tongues in the NY Times, with one concluding caveat.
Speaking in tongues still carries a stigmatizing whiff. In his book “Thinking in Tongues,” the philosopher James K. A. Smith describes the “strange brew of academic alarm and snobbery” that flickered across a colleague’s face when he admitted to being a Pentecostal (and, therefore, praying in tongues). It seems time to move on from such prejudice.
Why? It’s a silly practice…well, actually, I can see some virtue in the practice, but absolutely none in the rationalizations used for it. For instance, there are bits of this that I don’t object to, until the end.
What dawned on me in Accra is that speaking in tongues might actually be a more effective way to pray than speaking in ordinary language — if by prayer one means the mental technique of detaching from the everyday world, and from everyday thought [yes, isolating oneself in mindlessness], to experience God. [who says?]
She mentions other practices, like meditation to disengage from thought, and focusing and filling one’s minds with imaginary scenes from scripture. She left out the more obvious example, though: doo wop.
Obvious to me, anyway. Sha na na, sh-boom sh-boom.
There is something in our brains that connects with repetition and rhythms and sounds — it’s why music exists. It can feel good and it can even have physiological effects to remove ourselves from the world or to just soak in a mood, and I can sympathize with the idea that people find pleasure in it. But “to experience god”? No. That’s where Luhrmann goes off the rails. And it’s going to carry a “stigmatizing whiff” for as long as deluded apologists for religion continue to pretend it has anything to do with a god.
Her article is titled “Why We Talk in Tongues”. It doesn’t answer the question at all, and she never will as long as she’s looking for explanations in magic.
An excerpt from The Happy Atheist has been published on Beliefnet. Now you can make up your mind easily: if you hate it, don’t buy it (although from what I’ve seen, the people who hate it don’t need to read it to make up their minds). If you love it and can afford it, sink some cash into the book (it’s quite pretty, white with blue trim, it might fit the decor in your bathroom quite well). If you’re kinda meh about it, or too poor to pay for it, enter the contest to win a free copy!
Oh, also, if you’re a group interested in bringing me out to your city to talk about the themes in the book, you can contact my publicist at Random House, Josefine Kals. I asked her if she was sure she wanted me to put her contact here, and she said yes — she knows not what she does, so be kind and circumspect.
The faculty were melting down. It’s going to be a busy week — I have syllabi to finalize and multiple meetings to attend and cranky fish to fuss over (Morris has toxic water everywhere, full of minerals, and we’re dependent on the RO system to clean up the crap…and they’re shutting it down and flushing it with chlorine this week. What? Yikes!). And then I have other things I’m stuck with.
Tomorrow evening at 7:30 I’m doing a book event on KFAI radio. There goes my afternoon and most of the evening.
This weekend we have our Bridge to Biology program — a huge number of our incoming first year students in biology get taken out to the Lake Itasca Field Station, where we try to lose them in snipe hunts get them enthused about science and biology. I’ll be out there with a microscope and cameras and embryos (I hope, if the RO system doesn’t poison everything).
Oh, yeah, I’m preparing all my class stuff. I’m teaching cell biology and cancer biology this term. Any students reading this? You can get a jump on everything by reading the first couple of chapters of Life by Sadava et al., we shall be marching through the first third of this book in the cell biology class. In cancer biology, we’re going to focus on The Emperor of All Maladies by Mukherjee for the first few weeks, so read that whole thing now. Then once you all know what horrible things cancer does to people, we’ll dive into the mechanisms. You’re fortunate, too: last time I taught this, we used Weinberg’s Cancer Biology text, which is really aimed more at graduate level work; this time around we’re using Hesketh’s Introduction to Cancer Biology. The first two words in the title will make it a less daunting exploration, I hope.
Tell them to go read this article summarizing the case for vaccinations.
How do we know that scientists and doctors are right?
I’ve been asked about this quite a bit lately. One person asked me “why aren’t we getting peered reviewed research from other points of view?” The reason is quite simple: there isn’t any.
Darn it. For a brief moment, I thought there was a chance that Ken Ham had said one thing that was true and honest. RawStory is running this article, Creationist radio ad: Evolution cannot be debunked with reason, and Addicting Info echoes the sentiment, with Creationism Advocate Admits That Science Proves Evolution, But Says We Should Believe The Bible Anyway. They say Ken Ham has suggested this:
You cannot convince people that evolution is false with logic, according to the founder of the Creation Museum in Kentucky.
In a 60-second radio ad released Thursday, Answers in Genesis President Ken Ham admitted there was no scientific evidence that conclusively demonstrated that evolution was a lie.
They’ve completely misread his statement. What he actually said is familiar creationist dogma, and comes nowhere near their interpretation. Listen for yourself.
The hopeful rational websites are focusing on this statement:
We have solid proof in in our hands that evolution is a lie: the Bible. You see, we can’t depend solely on our reasoning ability to convince skeptics. We present the evidence and do the best we can to convince people the truth of God by always pointing them to the Bible.
It doesn’t say what they think it says. Notice the “solely”; creationists will claim that they are using their reason, even when they aren’t. Notice also that he says they “present the evidence”; they don’t, they ignore most of it and distort the rest, but they claim to be presenting scientific evidence to support their arguments.
What was also cut out of that particular quote was this little preamble: “Romans chapter 1 tells us that God has revealed himself in nature”. Ken Ham argues all the time that his view of nature and the physical evidence supports the claims of the Bible. He just also claims that the Bible itself is powerful evidence against evolution.
Look, I know that Ken Ham is an ignorant fool, and I know that his museum is a craptastical pile of lies and nonsense, but you will make no progress in an argument with creationists if you try to pull this misleading “gotcha” garbage and distort their words. Ken Ham did not say that “You cannot convince people that evolution is false with logic” — he firmly believes that the convoluted rationalizations he performs are logical (for years he’s been pushing this deadly dull book by Jason Lisle that claims to be a logical analysis of science, for instance).
He does not admit that “there was no scientific evidence that conclusively demonstrated that evolution was a lie”. Again, he is convinced otherwise. These non-scientists have deluded themselves thoroughly into believing that putting up a cast of some dinosaur bones and then saying that the animal died in the Flood means they have “scientific evidence” that evolution is false.
I’d love it if a creationist were to come right out and admit that the evidence kills creation and that they hold to their faith in spite of the evidence (one that I know of has done exactly that, Kurt Wise, but he’s an exception, and Ken Ham is no Kurt Wise). I do not think putting words in the mouths of creationists helps. I hate it when creationists twist our words (*cough*Ray Comfort*cough*), and I don’t appreciate it when people on my side twist their words. Deal with their arguments fairly, they’re easy enough to crush.
[Turing 2013] Atheist Entry #8
This is an interesting prospect, and it appears to be a largely cultural phenomenon. For centuries, the basic familial unit has been bi-parental. This applies primarily in the West, however. Other cultures, such as Islam or certain sects of Hindu ...
Government Lawyers Advocate For Atheism As A Religion
The litigation between the Freedom From Religion Foundation and the United States over the parsonage exclusion has taken an odd turn. The Government is trying to convince a couple of atheists who get housing allowances from FFRF that maybe they ...
Atheist's wishlist for Christian faith
In the same way, as an atheist, I don't see a world 'united' under one religion being the answer, because as we know, conflict is actually the worst amongst people of the same faith that disagree on the details. The Arabs have the same version of this ...
Are atheists the most hated group in America? (Videos)allvoices
Hemant Mehta on rising atheism among millenials: 'It's not that Christianity ...Raw Story
Millennials and the Church (Rachel Held Evans, Hemant Mehta, and Admiral ...Patheos (blog)
all 6 news articles »
How I went from atheist to minister in the Shire Free Church.
Also at sixteen, I “came out” to my parents as an atheist. I'd questioned the Presbyterian daddy god for years, and I did not want to continue going to church. My folks were cool about it, telling me they supported me no matter what. I'll come back ...