In a world dominated by magical thinking, superstition and religion, give yourself the benefit of doubt. This is one skeptic's view of the Universe.
"Tell people there’s an invisible man in the sky who created the universe, and the vast majority believe you. Tell them the paint is wet, and they have to touch it to be sure."
“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed”.
“Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.”
The person who is certain, and who claims divine warrant for his certainty, belongs now to the infancy of our species. It may be a long farewell, but it has begun and, like all farewells, should not be protracted.
A Nigerian man has been sent to a mental institute in Kano state after he declared that he did not believe in God, according to a humanist charity.
Mubarak Bala was being held against his will at the hospital after his Muslim family took him there, it said.
The hospital said it was treating Mr Bala, 29, for a “challenging psychological condition”, and would not keep him longer than necessary.
Kano is a mainly Muslim state and adopted Islamic law in 2000.
The International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) says that when Mr Bala told relatives he did not believe in God, they asked a doctor if he was mentally ill.
Despite being told that he was not unwell, Mr Bala’s family then went to a second doctor, who declared that his atheism was a side-effect of suffering a personality change, the group says.
Mr Bala, a chemical engineering graduate, was forcibly committed to a psychiatric ward at the Aminu Kano Teaching Hospital, but was able to contact activists using a smuggled phone, it says.
IHEU spokesman Bob Churchill said the group was concerned about his “deteriorating condition” and called for his “swift release”.
The hospital said in a statement that Mr Bala was “comfortable and conscious”.
He had been admitted because he required treatment under supervision, it added.
Mr Bala’s lawyer Mohammed Bello told the BBC he intended to arrange for an independent psychological evaluation of his client because of conflicting accounts of his health.