Two Opportunities (one for each side)

Two interesting opportunities turned up in the "Religion" folder of my RSS reader, and I'd like to pass them on to you:For Atheists:If you're looking for a summer internship (or know some secular youngsters who are still at loose ends), the Foundation Beyond Belief is still accepting applications for their summer internship program.  It looks like it's part time and telecommuting, so anyone could apply.Foundation Beyond Belief helps atheists coordinate charitable giving and has … [Read more...]

More Beating Up on Lazy Humanism

There was a link to the definition from Webster's that the Council for Secular Humanism highlights at the top of their "What is Secular Humanism?" page (ellipses theirs): Secular. "Pertaining to the world or things not spiritual or sacred."Humanism. "Any system of thought or action concerned with the interests or ideals of people … the intellectual and cultural movement … characterized by an emphasis on human interests rather than … religion." Holy False Dichotomy, Batman!I would never … [Read more...]

Atheist vs Humanist

fill in the blank

As you've noticed, Patheos has rolled out a site-wide redesign, and the best changes have come to the new 'Channel' pages (previously 'Portals') for the different religious groups on the site.  The old portal was kind of a placeholder, and they were holding off on major updates til the redesign.  One question that came up in consultations with bloggers before the rollout was whether our section should be under the heading "Atheist" or "Humanist."  It used to be "Humanist" and I'm quite glad we sw … [Read more...]

Should Atheism Be A ‘Comfortable’ Belief?

Greta Christina put up a really thought-provoking post today at FreeThought Blogs ("Will Atheism Become Easier?").  Greta's not talking about the boring question (will atheists be less stigmatized in the future -- pretty clearly yes), she's wondering whether it will be more comfortable, personally and socially, to subscribe to a godless philosophy.  Here's the conversation that got her thinking (I'm jumping around a little bit in my blockquoting, so do try and read the whole thing in c … [Read more...]

When Do You Reject Your Intuitions?

knee reflex

A while ago, a commenter emailed me to ask if I could recommend any books to read on human cognitive bias, and now that I've finished Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman, I can, with great enthusiasm.  When we study flaws in human reasoning, we usually start with glaring ones, and find out that they're just the most obvious examples of a broader problem (and the subtler errors are the more pernicious ones).  In the book, Kahneman has a really interesting riff on the Müller-Lyer il … [Read more...]

Is it Maps All the Way Down?

Yesterday, I went to the Dominican House of Studies for a symposium on Creation and Modern Science, and one of the speakers was Edward Feser, author of The Last Superstition (the book that got me started exploring Aquinas and hanging out with the DC Dominicans).  His lecture was on the immaterial nature of thought, and there's one facet of it I'd like to highlight here.Feser was talking about the distinction between concepts and phantasms.  As briefly as possible (i.e. blame me, not Feser, if … [Read more...]

7 Quick Takes (4/13/12)

--- 1 ---I realize I started experimenting with cooking and giving up gnosticism just in time (or possibly too late!).  You see, I went out with friends to see Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado and when Katisha opened a song with: Alone, and yet alive! Oh, sepulchre! My soul is still my body's prisoner! My friends leaned across the seats to nudge me and say, "Look, she's a dualist, like you!"Oh dear.  --- 2 --- Our discussion of determinism a few weeks ago petered out u … [Read more...]