On the Margin of Error Is One Year Old


Happy birthday to this blog! One year old! [Read more...]

Give This Novel to Anti-Vaxers to Read

Nemesis is the last novel written by Philip Roth. It is a novel about death, loss, grief, and absolute despair. All anti-vaxxers should read this novel because: (1) It’s great and everyone should read it, (2) It shows with an unequal force the horror of a world without a vaccine, that is, the polio vaccine. [Read more...]

Denying Children Vaccination Should Be Illegal

Denying children vaccination is a form of child abuse, not a parenting style. [Read more...]

Catch Me Twice on FTBCon3


I’m proud to take part in two panels this Saturday and Sunday (your weekend) in the third FtB Con. I love the idea of internet conventions which let me participate from Iran. I look forward to interacting with my friends from FtB again, and there are many great people I really admire on these panels. [Read More...]

Conversion Before Deconversion: How I Became a Sunni Muslim


Before I became an atheist, I was born to a Shiite dominated culture, and I was indoctrinated to the Shiite religion at the elementary school and when I began to question my faith, I converted and became a Sunni. And it all began with a single question. “Why can’t we draw the picture of Muhammad?” [Read more...]

Take Philosophy Classes with Professor Daniel Fincke


Are you interested in philosophy? This is the best opportunity for you to learn some philosophy. I will quote Dan Fincke himself in this post. Let me just tell you that he is a great teacher and an awesome man to have a philosophical debate with, so make sure to take his classes or if [Read More...]

What Sartre Means to an Iranian Democracy Activist


We like many western philosophers here in Iran, but if no other philosopher has been as influential and as widely read by multiple generations of Iranians as much as the existentialists Jean-Paul Sartre. Few other philosophers’s thoughts are so miraculously Iranian – few of them seem to be directly talking to a repressed nation under a repressed regime, few of them seem to have looked so squarely at our ailments and had written a prescription we sorely needed. [Read more...]

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...]

Guest Post by Farah Shah: The Negative Meaning of Tolerance

This was originally a comment on my blog post “Real Tolerance Is Not Understanding: Or Why Empathy Is Cheating” by my friend Farah Shah. I felt it significantly added to my point, so I asked her permission to publish it as a guest post. “I mean, say, that really were the case and all LGBTQ (or most of them) across the board preferred a more “casual-sex” type of lifestyle over “commitment”, how would that actually justify societies not granting them the same rights as everyone else? How would justify looking down on them with condescension?” [Read more...]

Real Tolerance Is Not Understanding: Or Why Empathy Is Cheating


It’s no big deal to tolerate what is the same as you. Finding ways to convince yourself that others are the “same” is cheating. It’s also no big deal to tolerate what you understand. Understanding is cheating. It’s no big deal to tolerate what you empathize with. Empathy is cheating. You only win the tolerance game if you tolerate what is different, what you don’t understand, what you can’t empathize with. [Read more...]