Hobby Lobby takes human biology to court, loses


It doesn’t matter if the evangelical gazillionaire owners of Hobby Lobby believe that emergency contraception causes abortions. It does not do that. Nor does it matter if this belief is passionately sincere and sincerely passionate. Sincerity and passion won’t make it any less incorrect. [Read more...]

As deep as any ocean …


She blinded me with linkage: Gravity could light the developing world … funny molecule names? oh, sparrassol … continuing the dinosaur alphabet … U.S., Malawi still tied for offshore wind … math major cracks the Baptist Code … and the best new word I’ve learned all year. [Read more...]

Black swans and blue tarantulas: ‘Without’ and ‘despite’ are not the same


To believe that which has been disproved is always wrong. To believe that which cannot be proved could be wrong, but it also could be right. The distinction is not subtle, and it’s rather important. [Read more...]

Does the Universe Have a Purpose? Your vote counts

You are here.

We have a say in this. We cannot consider the question “Does the Universe Have a Purpose?” without considering the sub-question “Do I Have a Purpose?” or even the sub-question to that, “Do I Want to Have a Purpose?” Answering “Yes” to that third question means answering “Yes” to the second. And that means — even if only in a very tiny, tiny way — answering “Yes” to the first. [Read more...]

Smart people saying smart things

Uwe Reinhardt says Europeans visiting the U.S. marvel at infrastructure that reminds them of the 1960s; Alex Knapp points out that if the Earth is only 9,000 years old, then none of our technology should work; Rachel Held Evans discusses her least-favorite adjective; and Richard Beck discusses the economy of submission. [Read more...]

Bulgarian town survived Noah’s flood


Even more remarkable than the ancient town’s unique fortifications or its “peculiar burial positions and objects found in the graves,” of course, is that this settlement was built and occupied by humans centuries before the creation of the universe. And not only did these Neolithic Bulgarians construct huge walls without “the wheel and cart,” their community also seems to have survived Noah’s flood. [Read more...]

A belated happy Carl Sagan Day


“As scientists, many of us have had profound experiences of awe and reverence before the universe. We understand that what is regarded as sacred is more likely to be treated with care and respect. Our planetary home should be so regarded. Efforts to safeguard and cherish the environment need to be infused with a vision of the sacred.” [Read more...]

Not all sins are stupid and not all stupidity is sinful, but young-earth creationism is both


When undeniable facts “conflict with your beliefs,” then you have only two options. You can, as Bill Nye said, “question your beliefs,” to see if they can be reconciled with the undeniable facts. Or you can reject the facts, shut your eyes and your ears to the world, and cling white-knuckled to beliefs that you’ve already seen are false, fortifying them with whatever urban legends and outright fabrications you find useful. [Read more...]