Saturday, December 29, 2012
Saturday, December 22, 2012
Epiphenom is a great blog. This post is is fascinating: Atheist countries more peaceful.
It's well established that education and religiousness are inversely correlated. The trick, of course, is figuring out what the cause is. Does education cause religiousness to fall off?
And this is my 300th post!
Friday, December 21, 2012
Monday, December 17, 2012
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Some random, but connected info about mental illness and religion. Given what we know about mental illness and about the best arguments that advocates have been able to muster for God, our first thought when we encounter someone with intense religious convictions should not be to take his/her arguments or reasonings too seriously but to ask, "What are the symptoms of mental illness that she is exhibiting?" The behaviors of the most religious among us: hyper-religiousity, hyper-moralism, evangelism, hypergraphia, visions, voices, circumstantiality, disassociated states, states of religious ecstasy, euphoria, and moral elevation. And when otherwise serious academics get involved in protracted and complicated defenses of religious belief, how is that not comparable to infamous Harvard psychiatrist John Mack getting swept up by the UFO abduction testimonies of his patients?
|Classification and external resources|
- Blumer D (1999). "Evidence supporting the temporal lobe epilepsy personality syndrome". Neurology 53 (5 Suppl 2): S9–12. PMID 10496229.
- Devinsky O, Najjar S (1999). "Evidence against the existence of a temporal lobe epilepsy personality syndrome". Neurology 53 (5 Suppl 2): S13–25. PMID 10496230.
- eMedicine - Psychiatric Disorders Associated With Epilepsy : Article by William J Nowack
- Waxman SG, Geschwind N (December 1975). "The interictal behavior syndrome of temporal lobe epilepsy". Arch. Gen. Psychiatry 32 (12): 1580–6. PMID 1200777.
And some more serious research from Advances in Neurology:
"The Geschwind syndrome," Benson DF.
Wednesday, December 5, 2012
"It might be in that America one of the two political parties seems to defiantly oppose the world science view. But I suspect that isn't the best way of understanding it, because they still look for oil using the assumptions about the age of the Earth that we all believe in; when they get sick they go to a doctor and they worry about the evolution of drug resistance just as we do. They're not Amish, they don't return to the land. So in a sense they have already bought into the scientific world, but there are just a few highly symbolic issues that define your moral and political identity that they stake out a position on, and I think that is very different from scientific ignorance. In fact, one study done by a former graduate student at my department at Harvard showed that people who endorse the theory of evolution don't understand it any better than those that deny it. We shouldn't confuse the moralisation of a small number of hot-button issues with hostility with the scientific world view in general."
There are those things that we say we believe, there are those things that we think we believe, and there are those things that we believe in believing in. And then there is what we really believe. When it comes down to one's real life, you don't really believe in Young Earth Creationism, most likely, no matter what you say you believe.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
When we indulge the religious urge, contrary to arguments and evidence, we foster irresponsible, unreliable, and problematic believing overall. We foster silly beliefs and set ourselves and others up for harm. Religious beliefs are not a private or harmless matter:
Scamming Elderly Asians on the Rise