The Humanist Institute – What on EARTH is “Faith”?

I’m back at The Humanist Institute (a Humanist leadership training program which you can join too!), at the headquarters of the American Humanist Association, and we’re talking about faith. Specifically, we’re discussing James Fowler’s Stages of Faith, an attempt to lend some psychological weight and bring some scientific clarity to the notion of “faith” and how it develops in human beings. [Read More…]

Religion and Education: Towards Religious Literacy

Education is my thing. I have undergraduate and graduate degrees in the field of education, and was a high school teacher back in London before I defected to the USA. I care deeply that young people receive an excellent education which prepares them to be master of their own minds and encourages them to have an open, [Read More…]

NEW STAR TREK TRAILER

I was raised on Star Trek. It is a fine set of explicitly Humanist parables. It was my family’s Bible. There is a new movie coming out. ‘Nuff said.   [Read more…]

James the Giant Croft – Google Alerts Me Of My Nemesis

Google Alerts is a wonderful service which sends me an email every time “James Croft” appears on a website, in a news article, etc. I find it extremely useful as it allows me to track where there are blogposts about my work which require immediate attention ( =P ). Sometimes though – since I am [Read More…]

Responsible Writing

It’s strange what catches the attention. What I thought was a rather innocuous and boringly-balanced post on the strengths and weaknesses of Rebecca Watson’s recent talk at Skepticon 5 has sparked a barrage of commentary, not all of it flattering to yours truly. Most of the criticism seems to be along the following lines: “You are being [Read More…]

Buy All the Things! – The Center for Inquiry Has a New Store!

The Center for Inquiry, one of my favorite organizations working to promote science, reason, and secular values, has a new store and it looks great. Make sure to check the store for holiday gifts for the godless heathens in your life. Highlights include: The beautiful CfI coffee mug, with which you can “let people know [Read More…]

Responsible Reading

I’ve been thinking about something for a while. What I’ve been thinking is this: that readers have responsibilities as well as writers. More precisely, effective communication is not entirely the responsibility of an author or speaker: the people reading a work, or in the audience of a talk, also have responsibilities they must meet if the encounter [Read More…]

What Inspires You?

I love inspiration: I think it’s one of the most important and underrated aspects of human experience. That sense you get when something wonderful, something amazing takes your breath away, drops your jaw and makes you go “Wow!” I find inspiration in many things: art, theatre, music, the natural world, the fantastic discoveries of science, [Read More…]

Shining Eyes, Clear Heads – Self-Help Without the Bullshit

I have a confession to make: when I was a teenager I was enthralled by motivational speakers. I was visited with this affliction after Ben Zander (a Boston-based orchestra conductor and musician) descended upon my high school and brought me to tears with his inspiring exhortation always to “radiate possibility” rather than “spiral downward”. I [Read More…]

Scott Lively Wants to Bring Down the City

On Saturday November 24th an enormous gas explosion ripped through downtown Springfield, MA, damaging numerous buildings, injuring 18 people, and leveling a strip club. The Boston Globe reported: The explosion happened at 5:25 p.m., leveling Scores Gentlemen’s Club, punching a large hole in the street, and blowing shards of glass and other debris through downtown [Read More…]