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Some Thoughts on Dawkin’s Enemies of Reason (Part I) Saturday, August 25, 2007

Posted by Henry in astrology, Carl Sagan, Channel 4, Dawkins, documentary, dowsing, Enemies of Reason, medium, new-age, paranormal, pseduo-science, psychics, rationality, reason, Richard Dawkins, skeptics, spirituality, video.
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I finally got around to watch the much anticipated TV documentary, Enemies of Reason (part one), created by you-know-who – Richard Dawkins. For those who don’t know, it is a skeptical examination on the irrational, the superstitious, the disillusioned, and the unreasonable. The first part of the series includes a look at astrology, dowsing, psychics, medium (talking to the dead) and certain forms of new-age spirituality (which I will bucket them all with the term “the irrational” from now on).

Here is the link to the video you can watch online or download:

My gut feeling is that something is wanting in the documentary, something is missing. I think it lacks in stressing the dangers of the irrational present to the general public. It is not harsh and devastating enough. Dawkins approach is mainly that of a scientific one, as one might expect – he looks at why people tend to believe in the irrational (Skinner’s Pigeons), carries out controlled tests on dowsing and astrology readings, mentions repeatedly how science has advanced our species and way of life, and is genuinely interested in what the psychics have to say about their practices.

There is nothing wrong with all of the above and I agree with them all. However, the documentary needs to examine critically at the practical implication of the irrationals. From memory, there is only one instance of this, where in the case of communicating with the dead Dawkins is concerned with the mental states of those who have lost their loving ones. I would have liked to see Dawkins apply his usual scholarly excoriation to expose and bulldoze his way through all forms of irrationality, as well as mentioning some stories too. Astrology is not merely harmless as one might think, people do act based on the readings, and I think the quackery of communicating with the dead equates to a form of emotional abuse with these so-called mediums praying upon the fragile and needy mental states of people.


Power of Prayer Proven (and Disproven) – Videos Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Posted by Henry in animation, Bible, Christianity, Ed Current, faith, funny, God, humor, humour, Jesus, parody, prayer, rationality, reason, religion, sarcasm, video.

Here is another great video from Ed Current, whose other previous works The Atheist Delusion and The Deluded Mailbag I have bloggged earlier. He really has a knack of creating good parody!

Here is his latest work which proves that prayer works:

Courtesy of the Friendly Atheist.

Okay, for all the atheists out there, here is a different video which refutes the power of prayer. Now I am totally confused as to whether prayer works or not…

Atheists – Face Your Worst Nighmares – An Awesome Video! Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Posted by Henry in anti-creationism, anti-evolution, anti-fundamentalism, creationism, faith, fundamentalism, funny, God, humor, humour, nightmare, parody, religion, science, video.
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Following the overwhelming success of the now famous Peanut Butter and Banana videos on the Internet, here is another video presenting not one, but many convincing and irrefutable evidences of how the Almighty God created everything! So there you go, those damn non-believers…

Courtesy of the Friendly Atheist.

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Intelligent Design Marching Into UK Thursday, July 12, 2007

Posted by Henry in anti-creationism, anti-evolution, anti-fundamentalism, anti-ID, BBC, creationism, education, Eugenie Scott, evolution, intelligent design, Lewis Wolpert, podcast, rationality, religion, science, Science Weekly, Simon conway Morris, Truth In Science, UK, United States, video.

Blue Rat alerts us that the dishonest, disingenuous and manipulative movement called Intelligent Design is trying to get into the UK schools. Here is a video of an interview conducted by the BBC’s Newsnight program between an ID advocate from an organisation called Truth In Science and Professor Lewis Wolpert, a distinguished biologist and humanist.

In December 2006 Science Weekly published a podcast on this very topic, this time again involving Professor Wolpert as well as the famous paleontologist Simon Conway Morris. Also in the podcast is Dr. Eugenie Scott from the USA, a leading science educator who has been at the front-line of combating creationism and Intelligent Design for years, and has recently published a book titled Not in Our Classrooms: Why Intelligent Design Is Wrong for Our Schools. You can download the entire podcast in mp3 format on the Science Weekly website.

Awesome Video Refuting Creation Museum Monday, July 9, 2007

Posted by Henry in anti-creationism, anti-evolution, anti-fundamentalism, creation museum, creationism, evolution, fundamentalism, geology, Kentucky, rationality, science, video.

Here is yet another video refuting the stupidity that is of the creation museum, but this time with a twist. This video shows that the museum is built right on an area rich in fossils and geological features!

Although undoubtly videos like this or anything else is not going to convince the dogmatic and ignorant creationists, this video is quite educational and well-made, worth your time going through it. PZ Myers has already declared this to be one of the most effective refutation.

Courtesy of Richard Dawkins .net.

Video of Fellow Science Bloggers Friday, July 6, 2007

Posted by Henry in bacteria, bloggers, Blogs, evolution, Larry Moran, microbiology, science, scientists, Tara Smith, Toronto, video.
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This is a video of some of the more well-known science professors in the blogosphere! In the video they are apparently gathering in Toronto for a microbiology conference. I subscribe to Professor Moran’s Sandwalk and Tara Smith’s Aetiology blogs. Good to be able to see and hear them instead of reading their writings!

Courtesy of Sandwalk.

Seems like I am on a roll lately, stumbling upon a number of videos.


Help Needed for a Good Cause Thursday, July 5, 2007

Posted by Henry in Africa, Blogs, charity, humanist, humanitarian, T. Ryan Gregory, video, Zambia.
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The evolutionary biologist and fellow blogger Dr. T. Ryan Gregory has posted a touching entry. His father and step-mother are going to live in Zambia to help the locals to renovate a hall and use it to vamp up the local economy and to improve the living condition in general.

Both of his parents are devoted social workers, and moving to Zambia is the biggest challenge they have faced.

Dr. Gregory has kindly asked his readers to help by various means, such as spreading the news in the blogosphere, donating books and various hardware such as science lab equipment and sound instruments.

Of course, you can find more details on his blog.

Since I am a sofware engineer, I will try my best in collecting electronic toys and old computer toys for the kids. Hopefully this will arouse their interest in science and technology and the natural world in general.

This is inspiring. Spread the word around and help if you can!

Here is a video presentation.

Creation Museum Video Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Posted by Henry in anti-evolution, Bible, creation museum, creationism, evolution, fundamentalism, God, museums, rationality, religion, science, video.

Here is a creation museum video clip. It is not a virtual tour, nor does it contain lots of shots of the inside of the museum; rather it is a refutation on the concept of “super evolution” presented by the museum.

Warning – the background music might irrate you. 🙂

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Parents: Please Don’t Indoctrinate Creationism To Your Kids Monday, July 2, 2007

Posted by Henry in anti-creationism, anti-fundamentalism, creationism, education, evolution, funny, humour, Sam Harris, video.

Courtesy of A Whore in the Temple of Reason

Notable Quotes #1 Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Posted by Henry in Christianity, Christopher Hitchens, Fox News, Jerry Falwell, Notable Quotes Series, quotes, video.
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This quote is extracted at the end of a TV interview, coming right out of the famous mouth of Christopher Hitchens:

If you gave Falwell an enema, he could be buried in a matchbox.

Christopher Hitchens on Jerry Falwell, Fox News

Ouch! The sharp-witted, unapologetic and surprisingly erudite Hitchens comes up with yet another in-your-face quote, this time on the late Reverend Falwell. This quote implies that if you removed the shit from Falwell that he will be left of nothing.