Kumare (Review)

I saw (most of) Kumare today. It’s a 2011 documentary about an Indian-American who resents his strict Hindu upbringing, because he thinks it’s bullshit, and so is kind of exasperated that so many Americans seem to take Indian yoga gurus so seriously. A trip to India convinces him that native Indian gurus are just as…

Atheism is not the Cult of NGO

Here’s a stupid meme that’s unfortunately gaining social cachet: It’s time for atheists to move past theoretical questions about the existence of God and onto more practical pursuits – like how to fight for justice. Yes, this – PZ Myers’ favorite dead horse. At least Myers has he decency (usually) to call it Atheism Plus.…

Again With the Special Atheist Exception

Imagine that some people did something terrible – like, oh, I dunno, walked up to the headquarters of a satire magazine and shot as many people as they could, killing 12 of them, wounding others. Imagine that they had done it in the name of their religion, because they felt it had been insulted by…

Atheism is not a Faith, Even if you Quote William James

The Atlantic has an article called Irrational Atheism by a Good Atheist arguing that atheist "belief" can be irrational, and that that’s OK. Technically, I suppose that’s right. "Atheism" just means that you lack any theistic beliefs, and you could do that for any reason, including that you just don’t want to believe in the…

Kevin Vallier Talks Sense, but Past the Point

Kevin Vallier has a column on Cato-Unbound touting what he calls a genuinely liberal approach to religion. My objection? That it’s nothing new. In fact, it’s exactly the approach that we take in the United States, and Vallier’s only real criticism is that we fail to faithfully implement it – to which the only cogent…

They Love Them Some Category Errors

Here’s a delightful comment on an article on National Review Online Atheists are a bit confused, they equate denying a specific nature of God with denying the existence of God. God exists in my mind and the minds of billions of other people on this planet, so denying the existence of God is a fools…

Hate the Religion, Love the Believer?

Making the rounds on the internet today: this tweed from comic Ricky Gervais: Suggesting I hate people with religion because I hate religion is like suggesting I hate people with cancer because I hate cancer. Which is one of those things we all love to hate about the internet: a plausible-sounding pithy insight that crumbles…

David Berlinski Plays Good Atheist

Vox Day links the following interview with David Berlinski- apparently a mathematician who also has some position at the Discovery Institute – approvingly, and it’s easy to see why. Berlinski is playing the role of what I’ve previously (following PZ Myers – UGH!) called the "Good Atheist." A "Good Atheist" is something like an atheist…

Atheists are the new Gays

Surfing (do people still know that term?) around the internet yesterday, I landed on a Paul Elam page complaining about Free Thought Blogs – and of course I’m completely sympathetic. The more I read by PZ Myers, the more ridiculous he seems to me. Anyway, it occurs to me in this connection that atheists are…