Skepticism is a Humble Project, Not a Bold Stance

by David R. Koepsell
September 02, 2014

Skepticism is at the heart of both humanism and science. In science, it forces us to question all our conclusions, test them, remain open to their falsification, and see our current models as always contingent. In humanism, we seek not enternal truths, but rather constantly inquire, open ourselves to new points of view, follow learning where it takes us, and remain also skeptical of any one "truth." Skepticism requires work, and we are quick to become rigid and adopt beliefs that seem unchallengable, but we must make a project of our skepticism, not a religion.

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Pseudonymous Novelist, Pseudonymous Novelist, Pseudonymous Novelist

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
September 02, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.     

Aaaand we're back. My sincere thanks to Ed Beck, Lauren Becker, and Stef McGraw for holding down the heretical fort while I was away. They were great.

The skepto-atheosphere lost one of its giants. Physicist Vic Stenger, author of numerous books including God: The Failed Hypothesisdied last week at age 79. Here's part of what our boss Ron Lindsay had to say:

One thing I liked about Vic was his lack of pretense and posturing. He didn’t trim his arguments — or his beard — to please others. He was interested in determining the truth. Period. What others thought of his occasionally rumpled look or his refusal to soft-pedal his arguments was a matter of indifference to him. We’ll miss both his intellect and his intellectual integrity. 

More bad news: Raif Badawi's sentence of 10 years and 1000 lashes has been upheld by a Saudi appeals court

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Reframing the Debate Over the Pledge: Make God Optional

No Faith Value with Ronald A. Lindsay
September 02, 2014

Children are back in school and, as part of their daily routine, most of them will be expected to participate in the reciting of the Pledge of Allegiance. Recitation of the Pledge is a requirement under the laws of over forty states.

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Conga Lines for Xenu

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
August 29, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.     

(Note: Paul is on vacation. Today's guest Heretic is Ed Beck.)

For swindling citizens there, a Quebec “clairvoyant medium” has been charged with fraud—and sorcery. 

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“Incorruptible” Corpse of St. Cecilia

Investigative Briefs with Joe Nickell
August 28, 2014

Reputedly, Cecilia (or Cecily) was a member of a noble Roman family who—having been forced into marriage—persuaded her new husband, Valerian, to respect her holy vow of virginity. Legends say he was himself converted to Christianity by a vision of his wife’s guardian angel. Cecilia is regarded as the patroness of music and musicians, and is represented as such in many paintings, including one by Raphael (1843–1520). The designation came about because, it was said, while organs played at her wedding, “she sang in her heart” to Christ (Coulson 1958, 107, 114). She is commonly depicted playing a flute, harp, or other instrument, especially an organ (see accompanying picture postcard, ca. 1915, author’s collection).

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But he’s really serious about converting to Islam

Bang Showbiz/Gannett

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
August 28, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.     

(Note: Paul is on vacation, or at least that's the rumor he's been spreading. Today's guest Heretic is Stef McGraw.)

The Committee for Skeptical Inquiry has announced that it is presenting the Robert P. Balles Annual Prize in Critical Thinking to Dr. Paul Offit. For those unfamiliar, not only has his vaccinology and immunology work saved countless lives, but he's taken to fighting against the alternative medicine movement with his book Do You Believe in Magic? The Sense and Nonsense of Alternative Medicine. 

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A Multi-Billion Dollar Inculcation Machine

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
August 27, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.

(Note: Paul is on "vacation." Today's guest Heretic is Lauren Becker.)

The Primaries are over and we now have atheists on the ballot in two very-red states

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We’re Hurtling Through Space Right Now

Shutterstock

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
August 26, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.     

(Note: Paul is on vacation, or at least that's the rumor he's spreading. Today's guest Heretic is Stef McGraw.)  

Get out your tie-dye shirts, everyone. The Council for Secular Humanism's American Freethought documentary series will be screened at the 15th annual Woodstock Film Festival over Labor Day weekend.

 

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You Have Creatures That Aren’t Human

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
August 25, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.     

(Note: Paul is on vacation. Today's guest Heretic is Lauren Becker.)  

When you care enough to send the very best... Oh, wait. We don't care that much. BYU bookstore accidentally stocks greeting cards celebrating same-sex weddings.

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Disputed Wafers

The Morning Heresy with Paul the Morning Heretic
August 22, 2014

The Morning Heresy is your daily digest of news and links relevant to the secular and skeptic communities.     

This is important, oh my tens of readers: Next week, your Morning Heretic (me, Paul) is taking the week off, BUT FEAR NOT. In my stead, my colleagues Lauren Becker (director of marketing), Stef McGraw (campus and community organizer) and Ed Beck (no idea), will keep the blog going, as they have so ably done during my previous disappearances. Be nice to them.

The Town of Greece, NY releases a new policy for who can and cannot deliver prayers and invocation at town council meetings, and we at CFI think it looks pretty exclusionary of the nonreligious

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