Sexual Liberation: Work in Progress

The effects of living in a theocracy are much stronger and more lasting than you wish them to be. Simply because you stop ascribing to the hegemonic religion of your culture, it doesn’t mean you are able to break free from all the taboos and prohibitions and barriers of your society. It is a myth that breaking away from religion is an instant moment of liberation from all the prejudices. Even if you know that they are wrong. In addition to that, living in a theocracy forces you to assume everyone follows these rules, so they still preoccupy a large part of your life. That is why I don’t think I’m sexually liberated. [Read more...]

Kaveh Mousavi’s Top 12 Music Albums of 2014

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Kaveh Mousavi selects his top 12 music albums of the year. From the loudest to the slowest, from the angry ones to mellow ones, from nostalgic albums to the futuristic ones, from those that defy their own genre to those which celebrate them, they all have one thing in common: great music. [Read more...]

Rouhani Attacks the Revolutionary Guards In Speeches

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If you have followed my reports on Iranian politics so far, you already know that the reformist/moderate Rouhani administration and the conservative/fundamentalist military wing of the regime, the Revolutionary Guards, are now almost openly at each other’s throats. Indeed, we now know that the Revolutionary Guards are secretly attempting a “cold coup” against Rouhani, which [Read More...]

6 Reasons To Be a Firebrand Atheist Even If It Doesn’t Help Convince Religious People

Many people argue against firebrand atheism, stating that it’s misguided and doesn’t deconvert religious people. Maybe. Maybe not. I don’t really care either way. I’m going to remain a firebrand atheist anyway. I really don’t care if my firebrand atheism is a turn on or a turn off to most religious people. That’s mainly because I have not devoted my life to deconverting religious people. It could be nice if it happened, but it’s not mandatory or even that much of a high priority. I have reasons for being a firebrand atheist that don’t involve religious people at all, which I list in this article. But this is the gist of it: Ultimately, my atheism is about me, not religious people. [Read more...]

Link Roundup 12/9/2014

From welcoming the new Patheos bloggers, to IS, to Mark Strand and P. D. James, from Roko’s Basilisk to Erdogan, this is the new installment of link roundup. Click to see why most online dating advice is terrible, if polygraphs help, and why Dan Fincke writes long posts. [Read more...]

Check Out Heina Dadabhoy’s Speech on Islam and Taboos

Heina Dadabhoy’s talk at Skepticon7 covers Islam and taboos and it’s awesome. [Read more...]

Will the Tyrants Ever Stop Playing Dick Measuring Contests with Their People’s Livelihoods?

Russian economy is tanking and Iranian nuclear talks have faced obstacles because of the “pride” of their rulers. It seems all these tyrants have one thing in common and that is that their version of “national pride” and “resistance” completely excludes all concern for people actually living in those nations. [Read more...]

Middle East Needs All Kinds of Feminism

There’s usually a rather unconvincing argument leveled against certain feminist arguments and it involves comparing the experience of Western women to that of Middle Eastern women. One of the most famous examples is Richard Dawkins. The basic argument is that western feminists are prioritizing in a wrong way, since there are larger problems in the world. But Dawkins is wrong because Middle Eastern women also face the same kinds of problems. So when feminists, whether American or Middle Eastern, try to raise awareness of these issues, try to make sure everyone understands consent and private space and personal boundaries, they are not distracting from the fight against Islamists, a very necessary fight, and it doesn’t mean it’s solely a “first world problem”, it is our problem too – we just lack the awareness, and we need much more activism to get where west is now today, even considering those “lesser” problems. Middle East needs feminism, all kinds of it. [Read more...]

The Revolutionary Guard’s “Cold Coup” Against the Rouhani Administration

Sahamnews, a major Green Movement websites, has released a report which chronicles the attempts of the Revolutionary Guards against the Rouhani administration, which are organized, calculated, and obviously defy the law and people’s vote. The website dubs these organized efforts a “cold coup”, as they don’t intend to overthrow the administration but to make it so crippled and ineffective that there’s virtually no difference. [Read more...]

My Tolerant Moderate Student Is the Reason I’m an Antitheist, Not Fundementalists

So yesterday in the class I asked my students what they thought of death, if they were afraid of it or not, and they all gave various replies. I didn’t bring up this morbid topic. One of them did. Among my students some are deeply religious. One of them is very progressive. She’s always on my [Read More...]


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