Suburban Chicago High School Football Coach Accused of Praying with Team Before Game

This is a little weird for me since it’s happening so close to home, but a football coach at Naperville Central High School in Illinois has apparently been praying with his team before games.

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Atheists Booked Space in the Nebraska Capitol Early, Crowding Out a Nativity Until After Christmas

Atheists will have an assortment of displays in the Nebraska State Capitol building later this month, and because they reserved the space months in advance before anyone else got there, a Catholic group’s Nativity scene won’t go up until after Christmas. And they’re furious.

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American Muslims Raise Money for San Bernardino Victims As a Way to “Respond to Evil with Good”

Following the San Bernardino shooting that left over a dozen dead, a group of American Muslims has responded in an awesome way: raising money for the victims of the shooting. And not a little bit, either:

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Is Our Brain Chemistry the Difference Between Religious Saint and Violent Monster?

Patrick McNamara, the director of the Evolutionary Neurobehavior Laboratory at the Boston University School of Medicine, has an interesting theory about brain chemistry and religion. It’s dopamine, McNamara says — the neurotransmitter known for exciting the reward center in our brain — that “drives the switch” between an extraordinary religious person becoming either a benevolent saint or a fanatical killer.

In an essay published over at Aeon (hat tip Dan Fincke), McNamara notes that

[B]ountiful dopamine has given rise to gifted leaders and peacemakers (Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Catherine of Siena), innovators (Zoroaster), seers (the Buddha), warriors (Napoleon, Joan of Arc), teachers of whole civilizations (Confucius) and visionaries (Laozi). Some of them founded not only enduring religious traditions but also profoundly influenced the cultures and civilisations associated with those traditions.

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Christians in Wadena (MN) Wrongly Think Atheists Care About Nativity Scenes in Their Yards

Last month, I posted about a Nativity scene in a Wadena (Minnesota) park that had no business being there:

That display came down after the Freedom from Religion Foundation warned them about a possible lawsuit, leaving residents furious. In fact, they’re trying desperately to make sure this assault on Jesus backfires against atheists. How? By putting up a whole bunch of Nativity scenes outside their homes:

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