You can be skeptical and friendly at the same time.
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Hemant Mehta is the chair of Foundation Beyond Belief and a high school math teacher in the suburbs of Chicago. He began writing the Friendly Atheist blog in 2006. His latest book is called The Young Atheist's Survival Guide.
That image makes me look forward to global warming…
“Don’t get carried away with questions. Anchor yourself with certainty.”
What certainty? I hope science never finds certainty in all things, would certainly make life boring! Question everything!
“To believe is very dull. To doubt is intensely engrossing. To be on the alert is to live. To be lulled into security is to die.”
Oh don’t worry, there will always be more questions. Every time we find a scientific answer for something, it brings with it more questions. It’s like finding a piece that fits into an infinitely large jigsaw puzzle. There are at least three more exposed sides to that piece that need pieces to be fitted.
There are no edges to this puzzle, and we do not have the luxury of a picture on a box top, so it’s a continuing adventure of new and fascinating questions, both big and small.
“As the circle of science grows larger, it touches paradox at more places.”
yes and each time we can look further out or further in (as in subatomic level) we find things we never would have thought were possible. The latest example: the supercluster of quasars recently discovered. According to news reports (I’m open to corrections from anyone who knows more about this) the size of mass of this cluster defies some of our ideas about gravity. Obviously some of what we thought was incorrect. That’s not a cause for alarm nor does it mean everything is wrong. Our knowledge was just incomplete. Certainty is for the small minded. It cuts you off from learning and expanding your horizons.
It’s rather the physical extent of the cluster itself, rather than its mass, that is surprising, because if correct it would suggest that the universe is materially anisotropic (the amount and distribution of “stuff” differs depending upon the direction one views) at the largest scales. A foundational assumption in astrophysics is that the universe, at the largest scales, is isotropic, so it’s a big deal.
While viewing the comic, I was thinking about how it might be interpreted by different types of thinking. Since it offers no words to guide the audience, it could easily be understood in very different ways than the author intended. I posted what I thought to be one such interpretation. I should have noted my intention.
For what it’s worth, your response to me contains two exclamation points, and one question mark. : )
The faces of the characters in the comic are problematic for your interpretation.
“The fact that a [skeptic] is happier than a [believer] is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one.”
Who says a skeptic is happier than a believer? You must not spend much time around me
Who? Not George Bernard Shaw in the original quotation.
Yes, I assume we don’t spend time together, but then I don’t know who you are. It would be interesting to meet someone I know this way. Might you be a rubber nipple salesman?
Is… is that a job I can actually get?
Yes, I saw it in a cartoon.
This song popped into my head: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=65wWr2oWHOk
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