RSSCategory: Culture

Why the creationist argument that “irreducible complexity” disproves evolution is utter nonsense

May 10, 2006 | By | 26 Replies More
Why the creationist argument that “irreducible complexity” disproves evolution is utter nonsense

Irreducible complexity refers to a system (e.g., a living organism) in which the various parts work together to produce a given function, such that the function will not occur if any of the parts is removed.  Creationists claim irreducible complexity disproves evolution. Evolution refers to the natural adaptation of a species to its environment over time, […]

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The Same Only Different?

May 10, 2006 | By | 1 Reply More
The Same Only Different?

I’m something of an amateur historian.  I find most rewarding research that shows how someone–an individual, a community, a movement–got to where they ended up.  It’s the most instructive part of studying history, because you can begin to see how things relate, how one incident, taken in isolation, may make no sense at all, but […]

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Bush’s “Wag The Dog” presidency

May 9, 2006 | By | 2 Replies More
Bush’s “Wag The Dog” presidency

Further to Sarah’s post about films that help make sense of George Bush’s presidency, another film that should be required viewing for anyone trying to make sense of Bush’s America is the movie, “Wag The Dog.”  As entertainment, it’s a disappointing movie; but, as political commentary, it utterly anticipates George Bush’s presidency. The movie, released in […]

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The Two Paths: No Self versus extended Self

May 7, 2006 | By | 14 Replies More
The Two Paths: No Self versus extended Self

Sometimes we can get to the same place taking opposite paths. One path is the Buddhist belief that “self” is a delusion. The objects with which people identify themselves—fortune, social position, family, body, and even mind—are not their true selves. There is nothing permanent, and, if only the permanent deserved to be called the self, […]

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Is God merely an imaginary friend for adults?

May 4, 2006 | By | 39 Replies More
Is God merely an imaginary friend for adults?

Earlier this week, I was watching one of the Christian-content religious channels on television (there are two such ‘church channels’ in my city) and I was listening to the televangelist say that “even if you have no friends in this world, God will be your friend.”  Immediately after hearing these words, I was struck by […]

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Wither Thou Goest…

May 3, 2006 | By | 2 Replies More
Wither Thou Goest…

Since the trial in Dover, PA over Intelligent Design, it must be obvious hat nothing was really settled other than a specific legal question.  I think it would be a good idea for every one interested in this issue to find and read the decision handed down by the judge.  But the furor shall continue.  […]

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Raise Your Hand If You Want Permission To Know Something

April 30, 2006 | By | 2 Replies More
Raise Your Hand If You Want Permission To Know Something

The Missouri legislature is entertaining a bill that would require a signed permission from a student’s parent(s) before the student may receive sex education. A few weeks ago, while listening to Talk of the Nation on NPR, I learned that, according to recent polls, Americans exhibit NO MAJORITY CONSENSUS on the issue of sex eductaion.  In […]

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Benjamin Franklin’s essay about Native Americans

April 30, 2006 | By | 3 Replies More
Benjamin Franklin’s essay about Native Americans

Erich’s post about George Washington and not prejudging the opposition reminded me of a superb essay written by Benjamin Franklin about Native Americans, titled: “Remarks Concerning the Savages of North America” (1784). The essay is reproduced below and I think it illustrates why Mr. Franklin is considered one of America’s most important individuals. ====================================== Savages […]

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What Christianity and alien abduction have in common

April 27, 2006 | By | 53 Replies More
What Christianity and alien abduction have in common

I just finished reading Michael Shermer’s book, “Why People Believe Weird Things.”  It’s very long-winded — the book could easily be 1/10th its size and still make the same points — but it did make me realize one thing.  The book discusses alien abduction as an example of a weird thing that many people believe, […]

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