In a world dominated by magical thinking, superstition and misinformation, 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."

-George Carlin

“If people are good only because they fear punishment, and hope for reward, then we are a sorry lot indeed”.

-Albert Einstein

“Skeptical scrutiny is the means, in both science and religion, by which deep thoughts can be winnowed from deep nonsense.”

-Carl Sagan

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.

-Christopher Hitchens

 

motherjones:

Bill O’Reilly thinks California is unmanly.
via Kyle Berry


How the fuck is a city evaluated as “manly”? Percentage of people who chew Skoal and sport truck nuts or what?? Or since the study seems to have been sponsored by Combos, maybe it’s decided by per capita consumption of processed pizza flavored snack foods?

motherjones:

Bill O’Reilly thinks California is unmanly.

via Kyle Berry

How the fuck is a city evaluated as “manly”? Percentage of people who chew Skoal and sport truck nuts or what?? Or since the study seems to have been sponsored by Combos, maybe it’s decided by per capita consumption of processed pizza flavored snack foods?

A God in Man’s Image

vertabrae:

All cultures have anthropomorphized their gods into humanoid (if sometimes grotesque) form. Were the Jews the exception? Hardly. We know precisely what the Hebrew god looked like. We are, after all, fashioned in his own likeness. He was a man, no doubt looking remarkably like the bearded sage asking us to worship him. He has body parts: eyes and a face (‘they are not hid from my face, neither is their iniquity hid from mine eyes’ – Jeremiah 16.17); nose and a mouth (Psalms 18.8); lips, tongue and breath (Isaiah 30.27,33); loins (Ezekiel 1.27); even ‘back parts’ (Exodus 33.23). He also has several ‘human’ emotions, manly appetites, and a worrying disposition towards pathological violence.

Yahweh feels regret for his own evil (‘And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.’ - Jonah 3.10); and grief (at the wickedness of men) (‘and it grieved him at his heart’ - (Genesis 6.6). He actually gets down and wrestles with Jacob, dislocating his thigh (Genesis 32.24). He forgets (he goes on calling Jacob ‘Jacob’ even after re-naming him ‘Israel’ - Genesis 35.10, 46.2). He practises favouritism (choosing the Israelites ‘above all people’ - Exodus 19.5; but he just does not like Cain or Esau!). He holds grudges (‘I the Lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation’ – Exodus 20.5).

For an omniscient god he is surprisingly unknowing (‘They have set up kings, but not by me; they have made princes, and I knew it not.’ – Hosea 8.4). And for an omnipotent god he has his limitations (‘The Lord was with Judah; and he drove out the inhabitants of the mountain; but could not drive out the inhabitants of the valley because they had chariots of iron.’ - Judges 1.19).

And after his creation of the world, he even has to rest from his labour (‘And on the seventh day God ended his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work’ - Genesis 2.2) – to the endless bemusement of pagan critics, whose own gods didn’t need to rest!

The insufferable arrogance of human beings to think that Nature was made solely for their benefit, as if it was conceivable that the sun had been set afire merely to ripen men’s apples and head their cabbages.

Savinien de Cyrano de Bergerac, États et empires de la lune, 1656 (via cwnl)

(Source: mohandasgandhi)

All philosophers have the common failing of starting out from man as he is now and thinking they can reach their goal through an analysis of him. They involuntarily think of ‘man’ as an aeterna veritas, as something that remains constant in the midst of all flux, as a sure measure of things. Everything the philosopher has declared about man is, however, at bottom no more than a testimony as to the man of a very limited period of time. Lack of historical sense is the family failing of all philosophers.

Friedrich Nietzsche (Twitter, Facebook)

Don’t let anyone tell you, “Oh, well, secular tyrrany is just as bad. After all, there have been fascist and communist dictatorships which have been just as revolting.” Fascism, as you know, was supported by the Catholic Church all through its life and, in fact, until after it had died, and still is defended. One of the leaders of the Axis was actually a god. There’s no way of saying fascism and national socialism and its actors were secular. And in the case of Stalinism, Maoism, and the Khmer Rouge, the same mistake is made and a religion is made out of man. It’s the religious impulse itself that we need to oppose, to criticize, to criticize in ourselves, as well as in others.

Christopher Hitchens, The Intelligence Squared Debate: Would We be Better off Without Religion? (via cocknbull)

Thank you Christopher, for composing this argument. And thank you CocknBull for bringing it to my dash. I’ve been hoping to find this laid out ever since hearing Hitch elude to it in debate.

“You never see animals going through the absurd and often horrible fooleries of magic and religion. Only man behaves with such gratuitous folly.”

Aldous Huxley - English novelist (Brave New World, Eyeless in Gaza, Crome Yellow), poet, and essayist.  Huxley was a humanist and pacifistic with interests in parapsychology and mysticism.  Posthumously a guru to hippies through his book The Doors of Perception, which described his experiences with mescaline and LSD. (via helvetebrann)

I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: “I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say. A man who said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.

C.S. Lewis (via cocknbull)

I’d rather spend an eternity arguing with an honest theist like C.S. Lewis than 5 minutes talking to one of those assholes who says “oh it’s all just nice metaphors for life.” Don’t make me vomit.

(via sixtyforty)

(Source: creatorbreakdown)