Showing posts from April, 2011

Atheists are Great!

A good article which leaves you scratching your head as to why anybody in their right mind would actually dislike an atheist. Atheists prove to be the most reasonable, amiable, charitable, intelligent, compassionate, independent thinking, good problem solvers, humane and prudent of people tested in various demographic studies. Makes one wonder why atheists are so hated, right?

Secular Superstions

We are all prone to supernatural bouts of thinking. It's just the way our brains are wired to process information. We detect patterns that aren't always there. Such flawed reasoning is extremely obvious when it comes to superstitious customs and practices. Even so, the common belief that religion is the only place for this sort of blinkered reasoning is not necessarily true. Religion is not the only place that contains obviously silly superstitious beliefs (e.g., you will go to hell if you don't believe in God, eating a cracker and some wine turns into the literal blood and flesh of a 2,000 year old dead Jewish dude, etc.) In fact, the secular world is chock full of superstitious beliefs. Here are a few of them.

Quote of the Day: Richard C. Carrier

"Though I am an atheist, in the basic sense that I do not believe there are any gods, you will find... that whether God exists or not really doesn't matter all that much. Every component of my philosophy can be arrived at independently, and stands on evidence and reasoning that would not change tomorrow if a god announced himself to the world today. Rather than being a starting assumption, my atheism is but an incidental conclusion from applying my worldview to the current state of evidence."                                                                          --Richard C. Carrier

The Countdown Begins!

What is SK3? Stay tuned for future updates!

Damn it All to Hell: I Get Mail

I've been having the weirdest non-blogging vacation. It seems I can't stop blogging. Especially when I get caught up in riveting conversations like the following (which I'm currently having in the comments section of my old post Demon Haunted World ). And by riveting I mean: fairly amusing. Damn it all to hell--I just can't seem to help myself. What follows is a follow up to a previous series of comments. However, I felt responding to this person deserved a little more consideration than a simple comments blurb could allow.

Some Stats. Wow!

I'm sure this post will bore most of you. But I just thought it was insane how many page hits I received from PZ Myers plugging my blog. Over 2,041 page-views streamed in from Pharyngula in just a few days.  Until that digital avalanche, my average weekly traffic ran about 300 page views a week. My single highest (most often) viewed blog was my "Fringe Science!" blog with a whopping 139 page-views. And by whopping I mean depressing compared to the new number one highest viewed blog which blew that one out of the water.  That's the power of word folks!

Quote of the Day: Douglas Adams

"The argument goes something like this: 'I refuse to prove that I exist,' says God, 'for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.'..."                                                                               --Douglas Adams

Is Hell Dead?

Excellent Times article about the controversial liberal Pastor Rob Bell's denunciation of the Evangelical Christian concept of Hell. Christians fighting among Christians about theological concerns is one reason we know that Christianity is doomed to go the way of Zeus and company. Is Hell Dead?

Don't Panic!

I'm going to be taking a month off from blogging. The main reason is that here in Japan the largest spring holiday, called "Golden Week," will begin soon and I will be taking my family to Okinawa for part of the vacation. We still need to pack and get all our passport stuff in order.  Also, I am going to read through Douglas Adam's The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series, since I've never read them. I'm already six chapters into the first book and loving it. Very funny stuff. The last reason for taking a break is that I need to recharge my batteries. I have a couple of writing projects going on that require a lot of time and energy and, well, blogging, as fun as it is, doesn't pay the bills. So I need to focus on some other things and at the same time try and get my breath back from the year and a half sprint I've been doing here.  (Although, if some smaller posts trickle in don't hold it against me.) Before I go though, I'd

R. Joseph Hoffmann Needs to Apologize to Atheists

R. Joseph Hoffmann Needs to Apologize to Atheists R. Joseph Hoffmann is a religious historian I admire for his profound knowledge of religious history, nevertheless he seems to be too caught up in his own misguided view of what atheists ought to be (or at least aspire to) instead of what atheists are. His confusion probably stems from the fact that he views himself as an atheist (more or less) but is certainly still extremely sympathetic to the religious position (more or less). There is nothing wrong with being sympathetic toward the religious or with regard to religion, but it’s not a prerequisite of atheism. Much of Hoffmann’s blog, the New Oxonian , is devoted to regularly bashing and ridiculing atheists with the zealousness of a religionist gone mad with sanctimonious certitude in his own self righteousness, and he constantly defends those poor dimwitted religionists, because as everybody well knows, they couldn’t possibly defend themselves against those cunning, cold as a nucle

The Truth Christians Don't Want You to Know


all your smartz is belongs to me!

All Your Smartz is Belong s to Me! Everybody has guilty pleasures. Mine happens to be watching B-movies. B rated movies are rated “B” because of their “badness.” As far as film making goes as an art, B-movies are the best of the worst. They have horrible scripts, bad acting, and usually generic special effects. Often times, however, they are so awful that they make you laugh out loud. Recently, I was pointed to an opinion piece posted on which was so awful, so painfully ignorant, so utterly ridiculous as to constitute the best of the worst of news articles I have ever read. And I thought I would critique it here, if not to correct the misinformation, then as a way to show that given a little incentive, one can track down the truth and find the answers to the questions they have. Opinions are, as the saying goes, like assholes. Everyone has one. And like assholes uneducated opinions usually stink. Needless to say, the article “Does the Bible Matter In the 21 st Century”

Quote of the Day: Wes Morriston

"If one were to draw up a list of things that make us special, it would probably include things like these. Humans are (or can be) self-conscious, capable of rational reflection and deliberation, of making plans and carrying them out. They fall in love, they have children, form family bonds, and care for one another. Some of them write poems or compose symphonies or discover proofs of deep mathematical theorems. Others understand and appreciate those poems and symphonies and theorems. Non-human animals share some, though by no means all, of these characteristics; and none are shared by rocks. "So why aren’t characteristics like these – all of which could be found in a Godless universe – sufficient to make us ‘special’ ? That we are the ‘accidental by-products’ of mindless natural processes, or that we haven’t been around very long, or that we won’t be around all that much longer, or that we are tiny in comparison with the universe is entirely beside the point. What matters

What is the Moral Landscape? A Short Explication

What is the moral landscape?  The moral landscape is the world of values we live in. A world inhabited by sentient, conscious, beings aware of right and wrong and all the subtleties in-between. Sam Harris has called the best possible existence, the one which is the most ethical, brings the greatest amount of happiness, and allows for the most flourishing is, subsequently, the best level of well-being we could achieve. Therefore, the goal is to mark out this moral landscape and try to work toward better echelons of human well-being.  It is here where we will find an objective morality.  By the way, although I need not point this out, Sam's concept of a moral landscape is fully compatible with the definition of morality. According to the Oxford Dictionary of English (2005) morality consists of principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior, and/or is a particular system of values and principles of conduct. It seems that marking out the mor

Quote of the Day: Erasmus

On Christians: "They speak many things at an abrupt and incoherent rate, as if they were actuated by some possessing demon; they make an inarticulate noise, without any distinguishable sense or meaning. They sometimes screw and distort their faces to uncouth and antic looks; at one time beyond measure cheerful, then as immoderately sullen; now sobbing, then laughing, and soon after sighing, as if they were perfectly distracted, and out of their senses." --Erasmus ( Praise of Folly )

Krauss, Kagan, & Sam Harris vs. William Lane Craig: General thoughts on the Debates

I don’t know, but it seems to me that Krauss offered a lot of good solid information. Meanwhile, WLC just stuck to his guns and did what he always does, spout off orthodox Evangelical conviction with that ever annoying constant appeal to authority. I mean, I already know what Christians think. I was one for three decades. Move it along. At the end of the day, however, I feel I learned more from Krauss than Craig. It seems to me most WLC fans are just taking the devotional tract and agreeing whole heartedly with Craig because he is simply reaffirming what they already purport to believe. Besides this, I think much of what Krauss was saying may have gone over many audience member's heads. For example, Krauss' comment that infinity adds up to a finite number seems to have been lost on most people. Certainly Craig seemed to be unaware of the implications, and how it renders his A theory of time argument to establish a first cause moot, as he let it slide. Or maybe Cra