Paul's Blog (29)

Even God needs Darwin.

Interesting post from Peter Watts: “And God and the Economy Have Blessed Me with Equality



We know that both religious belief and the tendency to see patterns in noise increase among the stressed and the fearful. [Gregory] Paul goes a bit further, observing that the political positions of the religious right actually work to increase the dysfunction of these metrics right across the board. The right’s…
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Added by Paul on October 5, 2009 at 4:26pm — No Comments

Happy Blasphemy Day

It's here! So Happy Blasphemy Day, one and all!

Added by Paul on September 30, 2009 at 11:03am — No Comments

The Atheist’s Guide To Christmas (AKA The Atheist Book Campaign)

The people behind the Athiest Bus Campaign have launched an Athiest Book.



The Atheist’s Guide To Christmas is Britain’s first atheist charity book initiative with the full advance and all royalties going to the UK HIV charity Terrence Higgins Trust.



The book features contributions from 42 of… Continue

Added by Paul on September 5, 2009 at 10:00am — No Comments

Team FSM on kiva

Here's some irony, and a chance to do some good in the world. The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is the largest religious congregation on charity website Kiva.org.



They are trying to raise $100,000 by the end of the summer and if you want to help, you can click here to join their team.



Kiva is a non-profit micro-lending institution primarily for the… Continue

Added by Paul on July 24, 2009 at 4:40am — No Comments

Freethinking for kids

In their latest issue, New Humanist magazine has an article by Danny Postel in which he discusses his attempts to provide his children with some humaist reading material, partly as a counterbalance to the Christian texts (and religious services) their mother, a Catholic, has introduced them to.

His attempts raised some interesting questions and the article is well worth a read.

Added by Paul on July 23, 2009 at 11:35am — 1 Comment

Things Atheists Didn't Do

Dave Hitt has compiled a list of Things Atheists Didn't Do. Go take a look.

Added by Paul on July 1, 2009 at 12:06pm — 2 Comments

Putting on a brave face

According to Flanders News, the Catholic Church in Flanders is struggling to find new priests - only managing to ordain one this year.



The bit that really caught my eye, though, was this gem from Peter Vande Vyvere of Tertio: "The fact that the number of new ordinations is falling is not a disaster because the number of faithful is on the decrease too."



No worshippers, no priests. Everyone's a… Continue

Added by Paul on June 17, 2009 at 3:08pm — 2 Comments

Some good news on Blasphemy

Council of Europe attacks blasphemy laws



Blasphemy is part of a person's freedom of expression and should not be made illegal, a Council of Europe advisory body said in a report published Wednesday. The body’s constitutional law experts, the Venice Commission, argued that while inciting religious hatred should be a criminal offence, as is the case with almost all of the Council of Europe's 56…
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Added by Paul on May 31, 2009 at 2:50am — 2 Comments

Quote of the Day: God is great...for men

The intimate and inescapable connection that contemporary liberal believers like to see between God and love, theism and compassion, is largely a modern invention. It's far from universal now and it was vanishingly rare in the past. St Francis was an eccentric, not an exemplar. The painful truth is that still, to this day, most people who believe in a god believe in a god who is often vindictive, punitive and sometimes just plain cruel.
- Ophelia Benson on why God hates… Continue

Added by Paul on May 31, 2009 at 1:51am — No Comments

A holy mission: Is this the real reason Blair went to war in Iraq?

The NSS Newsline is usually a pretty good source of information which is why I'm not immediately dismissing this article as being nothing more than a conspiracy theory.



What they are suggesting is that Blair's enthusiasm for the invasion of Iraq was inspired by a belief, shared with Bush, that the invasion was a “holy mission” and "a fulfilment of Biblical prophecy".



Personally, I don't think… Continue

Added by Paul on May 30, 2009 at 5:07pm — No Comments

Help defend blasphemy in Ireland

If you are Irish, or living in Ireland, a new website has been set up to campaign against the regressive anti-blasphemy legislation proposed by Dermot Ahern.



The site is well worth a visit and includes a wealth of background material, including a history of Irish Blasphemy Law that brings us right up to the current situation:



The Oireachtas Joint Committee on…
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Added by Paul on May 11, 2009 at 11:07am — No Comments

Elephants’ wings: A Parable

Once upon a time, four blind men were walking in the forest, and they bumped into an elephant. Moe was in front, and found himself holding the trunk. "It has a tentacle," he said. "I think we have found a giant squid!"



Larry bumped into the side of the elephant. "It's a wall," he said, "A big, bristly wall."



Curly, at the back, touched the tail. "It's nothing to worry about, nothing but a piece of rope dangling in the trail."



Eagletosh saw the…
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Added by Paul on May 10, 2009 at 5:34pm — No Comments

Heavy boots and critical thinking

This is simultaneously amusing and depressing.

Added by Paul on May 1, 2009 at 3:17am — 2 Comments

Hitch Envy

Every now and then, while stumbling across the intertubes, I stumble across some appallingly badly designed website that purports to prove the existence of God. The 'proof' consists of a series of logical fallacies posed as questions to which the site will only accept one answer – essentially forcing you to accept their premise at every step.



It turns out that there is a radio station in the US which also runs an audio version of this stunt. Todd Friel is the stuck-record presenter… Continue

Added by Paul on April 11, 2009 at 2:38pm — 2 Comments

A new avatar

It appears that some members of the Catholic clergy are getting offended when people keep pointing out that the Pope is a dickhead. So I have replaced my avatar with the one I found here





Update: 25th April

It's been a month and I am going back to an older, less Catholic, avatar. The Pope/condom cartoon is still online though and can be seen at the ever watchful… Continue

Added by Paul on March 24, 2009 at 3:30pm — 2 Comments

The Pope: Dangerously Dogmatic

Several EU governments have expressed concern over the Pope's mind-numbingly stupid and undeniably dangerous claims that using condoms could endanger public health and increase the problem of HIV/Aids.







France's foreign ministry said condoms were fundamental to prevention.



German ministers said it was irresponsible to withhold family planning from the poorest of the…
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Added by Paul on March 19, 2009 at 1:21pm — 4 Comments

Defamation of religion passages dropped from Durban II

Some good news at last from the UN, where threats by the European Union to join the US, Italy, Israel and Canada in boycotting April’s anti-racism conference, Durban II, have resulted in a victory over the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) .



Passages relating to “defamation of religions”, as well as… Continue

Added by Paul on March 18, 2009 at 5:06pm — No Comments

It's Catholic Fund Drive Time!

It's not often that I read an article and find myself in complete agreement with it, but this article in the Bostonist is spot on.

Go read it.

Added by Paul on March 10, 2009 at 12:23pm — No Comments

Creationism threatens to slip into UK schools

The National Secular Society has sounded an alarm over plans to insinuate creationism into secondary schools in Hampshire.



The proposal comes from a local Standing Advisory Council on Religious Education (SACRE), one of hundreds in the UK that are responsible in law for advising local education authorities on RE and collective worship. Hampshire SACRE has recommended that evolution and creationism be… Continue

Added by Paul on March 8, 2009 at 8:10am — 2 Comments

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