Category Archives: Religion

Links and Comments: Sapiens; Leaving Religion; Conspiracy Theories; Weather Forecasting

1. From yesterday’s NYT Book Review. Chuck Klosterman likes Harari: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/18/books/review/chuck-klosterman-likes-writers-who-arent-self-absorbed-sociopaths.html What’s the last great book you read? I picked up “Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind,” by Yuval Noah Harari. I thought: “This will probably be O.K. I’ll probably … Continue reading

Posted in Human Progress, Psychology, Religion, Technology | Leave a comment

Links and Comments: Religious Morality; Natural Law

On the heels of yesterday’s post is this “Jesus ‘n’ Mo” comic, posted by Jerry Coyne, on exactly the subject of deciding what seems right to you first, and looking for scriptural authority to support it second. Jesus ‘n’ Mo … Continue reading

Posted in Morality, Religion | Leave a comment

Links and Comments: Suffering Death without Religion; Fox News; Fundamentalism

New York Times: Surviving the Death of My Son After the Death of My Faith, subtitled, I had lost the one thing that could have numbed my pain. By Amber Scorah. A woman leaves her religion, gets on with her … Continue reading

Posted in Conservative Resistance, Culture, Psychology, Religion, Ten Commandments | Leave a comment

Links and Comments: Fiction and Truth, Ignorance and Knowledge, Science Denial and the Scientific Attitude

Three interesting essays this week. In the New York Times Sunday Review section, an essay by Yuval Noah Harari: Why Fiction Trumps Truth, subtitled “We humans know more truths than any species on earth. Yet we also believe the most … Continue reading

Posted in Changing One's Mind, Lunacy, Religion, Science | Leave a comment

E.O. Wilson: ON HUMAN NATURE

I first read this book shortly after its 1978 hardcover publication, and it was revelatory; elegantly written and insightful, it challenged conventional ideas about human nature, especially the one about the mind being a ‘blank slate’ completely molded by environment, … Continue reading

Posted in Book Notes, Evolution, Religion | 1 Comment

Links and Comments: The Smart Ones Figure It Out; Coyne on Yet Another Religious Apologetic

I’ve mentioned before how I think “the smart ones figure it out,” even as traditionally it’s been impolite to discuss it. The smart ones are generally smart enough not to make an issue of it; to not challenge their friends … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Religion | Leave a comment

Lightman: SEARCHING FOR STARS ON AN ISLAND IN MAINE

Alan Lightman is the best known of the three authors reviewed today; he’s published numerous books before, including the novels EINSTEIN’S DREAMS and THE DIAGNOSIS, as well as numerous volumes of essays, out of all of which I’ve only read … Continue reading

Posted in Book Notes, Religion, Science | Leave a comment

Links and Comments: Formal and Intuitive Religion

Two items. First, the latest survey showing the rise of the “nones,” the younger generation for whom formal religion is losing its attraction. In Nearly Every Country, Young People Are Way Less Religious Than Adults. The pattern holds throughout most … Continue reading

Posted in Culture, Religion | Leave a comment

Link: Wills on Carter on Ideology v. Religion

From Garry Wills’ review of Jimmy Carter’s new book Faith, in the New York Times Book Review a couple weeks ago (posted online earlier): In the ideology that the right thinks is a religion, the sin of sins is abortion, … Continue reading

Posted in Conservative Resistance, Religion | Leave a comment

Links and Comments: Storytelling; Religious Fundamentalism and Fake News; the Attraction of Conspiracy Theories

Time magazine, December 5, 2017, Jeffrey Kluger: How Telling Stories Makes Us Human [S]torytelling is a powerful means of fostering social cooperation and teaching social norms, and it pays valuable dividends to the storytellers themselves, improving their chances of being … Continue reading

Posted in Narrative, Psychology, Religion | Leave a comment