Earthman’s Journey – Part 7 (of 8)

[ Part 1 — 2 — 3 — 4 — 5 — 6 – 7 — 8 ]The Houses of Man (cont.) As you’ve probably already figured out, there are other steps in this bigger-house progression. At some point we discover the door to yet another Outside, and find that our original family home is only a small part of a bigger place – our neighborhood or culture. For want of a better name, call this dwelling place the House of the Tribe. Again, there’s an uncomfortable period of adaptation in settling-in to this larger space. To b … [Read more...]

Hear, Hear, Well Spoken Bruce!

Fellow FTB blogger Jason Thibeault, the Lousy Canuck, just gave me an "I couldn't have said it better myself" moment with his repost of "Why don't atheists just shut up and stay home?"Well worth a read: We atheists have been silent for a very long time; our voices are understandably rusty. For every encroachment into our personal space — for every incentive that discriminates against faithless — for every demand that people be allowed to share their love of God with others — we are being told t … [Read more...]

Earthman’s Journey – Part 6 (of 8)

[ Part 1 — 2 — 3 — 4 — 5 — 6 – 7 — 8 ]The Houses of Man Picture a house. Not a real house, but a kind of metaphor-house, the place where your inner life takes place. The rooms inside are furnished with your everyday thoughts, feelings and understandings. In this particular house, there are secret doors. People can tell you that they’re there, but you never believe them, because you can’t see the doors, or any hint of them. Picture every little boy who has stoutly declared that he would never, e … [Read more...]

Should We Ban All Religion?

A couple of Australian ad pitchmen created sample ads advocating the banning of all religion.A television program on Australia's ABC1 network, called The Gruen Transfer, discusses the methods, science and psychology behind advertising. Their website has a FAQ pagewhich gives the following definition: "Named for Victor Gruen, who designed the very first shopping mall. The term describes that split second when the mall's intentionally confusing layout makes our eyes glaze and our jaws … [Read more...]

Invasion of the Buddy Snatchers

There’s a parasite that eats crabs from the inside. (I read about it in Carl Zimmer's excellent Parasite Rex, reissued this year in a 10-year anniversary edition.) It enters the crab by penetrating a weak spot, then spreads long rootlike tendrils through the crab’s interior. The crab’s immune system fails completely to recognize it, and it soon takes over the hapless crustacean, body and brain. The crab continues to eat, to feed the thing, but it can no longer molt and grow, regrow severed claws … [Read more...]

Earthman’s Journey – Part 5 (of 8)

[ Part 1 — 2 — 3 — 4 — 5 — 6 – 7 — 8 ]Molly (cont.) This kind of thought wasn’t completely new for me – I confess I’d dwelt many times on the fortunes of other men, wistful and envious of the assets they enjoyed. “What would it be like to be him?” I had asked myself, him way up there with all that money, with a daddy who provides private airplanes and the family’s own airport, with new trucks and horses and jet skis and scuba diving lessons there for the asking. “What would it be like to be him … [Read more...]