Month: May 2008

Totality Beliefs and the Religious Imagination

Thew Secular Web has just put up my review of Totality Beliefs and the Religious Imagination by Anthony Campbell. Short version: it’s a good book, read it if you get a chance. Your name Your email Subject Your message (optional)

The Happy Heretic is back

The Happy Heretic, Judith Hayes’s web site, is back online after an absence of two years. Every month she puts up an essay criticizing some aspect of popular religion in the United States. I like following The Happy Heretic. I’m used to the sort of nonbelief that is common in academic circles, and I’ll never The Happy Heretic is back

16% of US biology teachers are creationists

According to a paper in PLoS Biology by Michael B. Berkman, Julianna Sandell Pacheco, and Eric Plutzer, 16% of US secondary school biology teachers are creationists. Well, 16% is a high number. Or maybe it’s low, given that more like 48% are creationists among the general public. Your name Your email Subject Your message (optional)

Shroud of Turin

I apologize to everyone on behalf of physicists. The infamous Shroud of Turin, believed to be the burial cloth of Jesus with a miraculously imprinted image of Jesus on it by some conservative Protestants and Catholics, is yet more evidence that supernatural convictions are impervious to criticism. It’s a bizarre claim at face value, and Shroud of Turin

How insular are we?

I ran into a former student who once took my Weird Science course. She’s pretty religious and a creationist, and she told me that she recently watched a movie featuring Lee Strobel that she liked. It made her think of my course. I’ve read a couple of Strobel books, and I regularly lend out his How insular are we?

A Hindu honor killing

I recently posted a rant concerning honor killings, using an Iraqi Muslim example. Well, I just ran into a Hindu example that is just as horrifying to modern liberal moral sensibilities. Again, note the connection to religion. There should be no surprise here: traditional communities depend on their religion for their sense of moral order. A Hindu honor killing

“The Stupidity of Dignity”

Steven Pinker has a very good essay on The New Republic online, “The Stupidity of Dignity.” It examines the uselessness of the concept of dignity in bioethics, particularly the Catholic-inflected “theocon” version of bioethics that has become very influential in the US government. Your name Your email Subject Your message (optional)