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Monthly Archives: January 2011
This brief bit from a New York Times report this weekend jumped out at me: Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr, a Muslim cleric known as Abu Omar, said that many conservative Muslims would not support a secular politician like Mohamed ElBaradei, the Nobel Prize … Continue reading
Neurons That Fire Together Wire Together: The New York Times Says 8 Weeks of Meditation, 30 Minutes a Day, May Change the Brain
More study is needed (obviously), but the New York Times, in its Health section, has a startling article on meditation’s apparent ability to literally change how the brain wires itself up, and that after only 8 weeks of very modest (30 minutes a day) meditation … Continue reading
Experts know more about their subject of expertise than you do. So, if you discover that you possess a view that contradicts the vast majority of experts, it’s more likely than not that they’re right and you’re wrong. In determining … Continue reading
Thomas Jefferson once encountered a jaw-dropping claim. The claim that confronted Jefferson was from eyewitnesses who said that they had seen rocks fall from the sky. They even claimed to retrieve fragments from them. And here’s the kicker: the witnesses, under normal circumstances, … Continue reading
What’s your Weltanschauung—your worldview? In other words, what do you think you know about the world (your metaphysics)? How do you think you know it (your epistemology)? What should you be doing and valuing as an individual (your ethical and … Continue reading
In the introductory chapter to physicist Brian Greene’s new book, The Hidden Reality, he offers a very brief list of parallel worlds from literature, television, and film: The Wizard of Oz. It’s a Wonderful Life. “The City on the Edge of Forever” … Continue reading
Physicist Brian Greene’s new book just came out, and it’s exceptional. If you want the skinny on what hidden realities there might be behind and beyond our own, you can safely set aside the Bible and just read Brian Greene. And damn he … Continue reading
What’s your Weltanschauung—your worldview? In other words, what do you think you know about the world (your metaphysics)? How do you think you know it (your epistemology)? What ought you be doing and valuing as an individual (your ethical and … Continue reading
To my mind, this imaginative dialogue between two teddy bears perfectly exposes the intellectual incoherences of the anti-gay rights movement.
Republican Rick Santorum is likely running for president in 2012 and here are his views on same-sex marriage and gay couples adopting children. Listen for the reasons that he offers (or at least alludes to) in support of his views: I pick up from … Continue reading
Given the broad debate over right-wing responsibility (or not) for the shooting of Arizona Congresswoman Gabriella Giffords, I wonder why this story, from August of last year, got so little play. It appeared in the Washington Post: When California Highway Patrol officers … Continue reading
Talk about a den of thieves molesters! This stunning bit of news was reported today in the New York Times: A newly disclosed document reveals that Vatican officials told the bishops of Ireland in 1997 that they had serious reservations about the … Continue reading
You’ll have to click over to YouTube to see this 60 Minutes segment on the founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, but it’s really interesting. Talk about a Promethean! Zuckerberg’s genius, I think, is to have tamed a human form of … Continue reading
Rabbi Rami Shapiro offers a thought-provoking response to a recent atheist billboard: On the Jersey side of the Lincoln Tunnel atheists have posted a billboard featuring the three Magi approaching the manger. The text reads, “You Know It’s a Myth. This … Continue reading
Here’s a link to the Los Angeles Times’ balanced budget calculator. It’s there that you can imagine yourself wielding the budget ax, raising taxes, or doing some combination of the two to bring California’s $28 billion deficit over the next 18 months … Continue reading
Coptic Christians in Los Angeles Hold Rally for Coptic Christians in Egypt. How Many American Muslims Rallied in Solidarity Beside Them?
About two weeks ago, Coptic Christians living in Los Angeles held a rally in front of the Federal Building near UCLA in an attempt to bring awareness to the plight of Coptic Christians living in Egypt. On a good weather day, … Continue reading
Andrew Sullivan today concisely lays out the difference between a liberal discourse and an illiberal one: [Y]ou help me – through error and insight – to get closer to the truth sooner than if I were trying to understand the … Continue reading