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Sam Harris

While promoting atheism, Harris examines spirituality by means of considering philosophy, neuroscience and mysticism rather than displaying tacit disdain for it. He warns of the threat that fundamentalist religion poses to human progress and survival

Members: 230
Latest Activity: Mar 7

Discussion Forum

The Straight Path

Started by Steph S. Apr 22, 2013. 0 Replies

Sam Harris responds!! Response to Controversy

Started by Steph S.. Last reply by Stephen McMahon Apr 12, 2013. 5 Replies

Are the "New Atheists" Bigoted Tools of Empire?

Started by Steph S.. Last reply by Jedi Wanderer Apr 8, 2013. 1 Reply

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Comment by James M. Martin on June 10, 2013 at 7:11pm

http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/islam-and-the-misuses-of-ecstasy Great new essay by Sam Harris.  My only comment would be that the Islamists do precisely the same thing found in Roman Catholicism: torture and kill apostates for their seeming heretical belief, then acknowledge them as saints.  Catholics have Jeanne d'Arc, Islamists Mansur al-Hallaj, whose utterance, "I am the truth," was regarded as heresy.  How many times will we witness these clerical hypocrisies?

Comment by Jedi Wanderer on March 30, 2012 at 7:18am

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pCofmZlC72g&feature=youtube_gdat...

Sam's recent lecture on the illusion of free will.

Comment by annet on February 29, 2012 at 12:09am
Imagine a future in which millions of our descendants murder each other over rival interpretations of Star Wars or Windows 98. Could anything - anything - be more ridiculous? And yet, this would be no more ridiculous that the world we are living in.
Sam Harris
Comment by James M. Martin on February 11, 2012 at 8:17pm

http://www.samharris.org/site/full_text/debate-with-andrew-sullivan... wonderful debate between an atheist and a Catholic along the lines of whether mainstream religionists "enable" the loonies and right wingnuts.

Comment by Steph S. on September 22, 2011 at 7:48am
Good Morning Sam Harris fans!
Comment by Sam Kennedy on January 11, 2011 at 6:44pm
I guess I'm a little behind the times here, but I just finished watching the debate between Michael Shermer, Sam Harris, and Deepak Chopra.  Sam was amazing, his arguments are so clear and concise.  It gave me such a better perspective on the debate.  If you missed it here's the link from You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6-8-Yxdphsg 
Comment by Stephen McMahon on December 28, 2010 at 12:06pm

Excuse me, the second-to-last paragraph should read:

 

The last National Intelligence Estimate concerning Iran's nuclear program stated, unequivocally, that Iran has absolutely no active nuclear weapons program.  Repeat: no active nuclear weapons program.

 

Sorry.

Comment by Stephen McMahon on December 28, 2010 at 12:01pm

It seems to me that Harris makes it clear in End of Faith that his criticism about religion is all encompassing. Your argument that he gives Judaism a pass is just false.

Show me one, single instance where Harris criticizes Judaism with the same forcefulness that he does Xtianity and, esp., Islam.  Where he calls for a first strike, say, for the murder of Americans in the King David Hotel bombing, or the murder of the USS Liberty crew, or the murder of Americans in the Lavon Affair, Rachel Corrie, etc. etc. etc. etc.  You cannot.  Because he doesn't.  Ever.

I would ask a theoretical question of you though ...

Well, Since I am controlled by my neo-cortex, rather than my lizard brain, I would FIRST investigate the cause for the disquiet in this alleged 'enemy'.  Removing the cause is always more efficient than starting wars, but it does deprive the Wall Streeters of all those wonderful war-profits and that tingly feeling racists get as they watch their soldier-boys march into slaughter battle of the under-equip'd colored people enemy.  But, I guess, that's just me.

Of course, removing the cause for disquiet would involve a policy change that would, first of all, affect war profits and secondly require a true, ethical, moral re-examination of a foreign policy that probably the best Secretary of Sate in the history of this country, George Marshall, thoroughly condemned.  So far that hasn't happened.  And thanks to people like Sam Harris, we keep getting the same old, tired Islamophobia wrapped in a pretty little "secular humanist" package, that keeps that paradigm roaring.

Personally, when I have been confronted with physical assault, a first strike or "sucker punch" strategy is SO revealing.  It tells me that my opponent is a coward controlled by the lizard-brained eat, attack, run away, mate urges.  A fellow name of Muhammad Ali had a pretty good career in the ring taking advantage of guys like that.  And it's always worked for me.

You may know more about Harris then I do ...

Well, I know that along with first strike endorsement he also approves of assassination and torture of colored people dangerous muslims, "But only in the case of ... yadda,yadda,yadda / blah,blah,blah."  Harris, along with his partner-in-bigotry, Alan Dershowitz, seem to confuse a show on the Tee-vee, "24", and their fictional hero, Jack Bauer, with reality.  Their puerile notions of "ticking time bombs" would be laughable if they weren't so repugnant. (nuclear devices do NOT fit inside briefcases and they're very HEAVY, like the lightest being at least 1500 lbs.)

 

I come from a family full of cops/soldiers and one thing you always hear is the responsibility of having another person under constraint, where they cannot use their hands/feet, etc. for self-protection.  Violations of that trust are CAREER ENDERS.  Period.  PENSION & BENEFIT ENDERS and a one-way ticket to a blue vest down at the Walmart.

But not for guys like Sam Harris.

Does that prove they intend to destroy the West? ...

No.  But they are trying to protect themselves from genocide (again, see the Goldstone Report). 

 

According to former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Israel controls the only nuclear weapons in the immediate Middle East region.

The last National Intelligence Estimate concerning Iraq's nuclear program stated, unequivocally, that Iraq has absolutely no active nuclear weapons program.  Repeat: no active nuclear weapons program.   

But in spite of this, Americans believe the opposite.  Gee ... I wonder why?

Comment by Nathan Phelps on December 27, 2010 at 11:37am
Sorry Stephen, as soon as you start with the broad brush strokes, you've lost the argument in my opinion.

It seems to me that Harris makes it clear in End of Faith that his criticism about religion is all encompassing. Your argument that he gives Judaism a pass is just false.

I would ask a theoretical question of you though. If evidence that met your threshold of truth were provided, would you condone a first strike? It appears from your argument that you abhor even the notion of first strike. Perhaps I read too much into your words. But in a purely philosophical sense, if seems to me that the notion of first strike is an evolutionarily sound one. If I become convinced that you will attack me, it is in my best interest to put you down before you get the opportunity.

I'm NOT arguing here that Bush's or Harris' ideology fits my description, simply that using "first strike" as a derogatory term in your writing doesn't make sense to me logically.

You may know more about Harris then I do, but the simple fact of the matter is that he raises valid issues concerning the application of Islamic ideals by some Muslims. Does that prove they intend to destroy the West? I don't know. Does Sam's ideology, as you present it, nullify the validity of this concern? I don't think so.
Comment by Stephen McMahon on December 27, 2010 at 10:55am
Keely,

My words may seem a little harsh but, first & foremost, I am a pacifist and AGAINST WAR. War is NEVER the ranswer. I have found that the warmongers, like Harris, always have 'reasons' for going to war and - ALWAYS - every single time, endorse a FIRST STRIKE strategy. It is a most cowardly and venal plan that fits our top-heavy military industrial complex purposes perfectly. Always attack people who have little or no means to fight back. Harris is one of their "secular" apparatchiks and gets published and promoted primarily because he endorses military solutions with a "humanist patina". He is a ghoul.

Think about this: Sam Harris, at the end of his first book, endorses A NUCLEAR FIRST STRIKE on the Arab world. Period.

Now he, and his pal Alan Dershowitz, will prevaricate and try to hide their murderous counsel with every rhetorical trick possible but, bottom-line, believe me, their reasoning is *exactly* like the lies you heard from Bush and the Neocons in the run-up to the bogus Iraq war: we've got to kill "them" before they kill us.

I guarantee you that if you asked Harris about the Israeli genocide of the children in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead, described in The Goldstone Report, he would excuse it with some flowery, melodramatic tripe about "the fog of war". Why? Because Sam Harris LUVs him that soldier-boy stuff when it is aimed at non-jews in Palestine. The more colored kids you kill; the less colored adults you have to kill later. Sorry, but that's Harris & Dershowitz in a nutshell.

Watch out for these guys.
 

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