Category Archives: religion

The Nonexistent Angels of our Nature: Why Religion Has Declined (and there’s no going back)

Yes, I’ve shamelessly cribbed from the title of Steve Pinker’s last big book, but his thesis (and that of his new one, Enlightenment Now) is relevant to this 16-minute TedX talk (below) by Dr. David Voas.  When this was given in 2015, Voas was at the University of Essex, but he’s now Professor of social science and head […]

The Atheist/Science event last night

Here are their names in lights! I watched the people walk in, and if you didn’t know this was an event rife with discussion of science, meditation, and atheism, you wouldn’t have guessed from the audience: a diverse group of all ages, ethnicities, and sartorial quality. I especially looked at the sex ratio given that […]

Dennis Prager explains why he believes in the afterlife

Here’s a five-minute video by conservative Jewish “pundit” Dennis Prager; it’s part of his “Prager University” series of short videos, some of which are okay but most of which are dire. In this one, Prager himself explains why he believes in an afterlife.  The reasons boil down to these: “If there’s a God, then there’s an […]

Ali Rizvi talks sense on Israel and Palestine

Unbeknownst to me, Ali Rizvi, author of The Atheist Muslim: A Journey from Religion to Reason (I blurbed the book) wrote a fine article on the Israel Palestine crisis that was published in PuffHo on July 28, 2014. (Click on screenshot below to read it, and you should.) Normally I’d kvetch about his publishing this […]

Does religion promote morality?

Today’s New York Times op-ed features a piece with a provocative title (click on screenshot to read the article): The author, Mustafa Akyol, is described as “a contributing opinion writer. . . the author of “The Islamic Jesus” and a visiting fellow at the Freedom Project at Wellesley College.” Unfortunately, while Akyol properly calls out Turkey’s […]

Must we have a god? The Beeb says yes

I guess I’ve known for a while about the BBC’s softness on religion, seen most obviously in its daily moment of faith (I can’t remember the name of that segment or find it on the Internet, but I’ve heard it many times), and the fact that the moment of faith never includes any secularists. (I […]

Reza Aslan’s new book, in which he becomes a pantheist

Reza Aslan’s new book, God: A Human History, came out five days ago. Click on the screenshot to go to the Amazon page: Curiously, despite Aslan’s recent television series, Believer, the book doesn’t seem to be garnering a lot of attention—or praise. (But perhaps that’s because his series was dreadful and got canceled.) The book got […]

Theodicean irony

Reader S Mark sent me this screen capture from last night’s NBC Nightly News with Kate Snow (Mark clearly added the circle!). No commentary is needed.

Losing our religion: the U.S. slowly goes secular

Several readers called my attention to a new short article in Scientific American, “The U.S. is retreating from religion“, which highlights a recent study by the General Social Survey (GSS) conducted by NORC (the National Opinion Research Center of the University of Chicago.  The upshot is something I’ve written about a lot: the U.S. is slowly […]

An enigmatic cartoon

Several people have sent me the following cartoon, and I’ve seen it on Facebook. I just got sent it again, and I’m not quite sure what it means. Please explain below. I suspect there are several reasons why people may find it funny, but until I understand it, I’m baffled: