Ahh, snap Sam Harris, them’s fightin’ words

Sam Harris wants to word battle with Dr. David Eagleman.

We should all encourage this word battle to happen.

Harris says on his blog:

The above talk was sent to me by a reader and is well worth watching. In it, the neuroscientist David Eagleman says many very reasonable things and says them well. Unfortunately, on the subject of religion he appears to make a conscious effort to play the good cop to the bad cop of “the new atheism.” This posture will win him many friends, but it is intellectually dishonest. When one reads between the lines—or even when one just reads the lines—it becomes clear that what Eagleman is saying is every bit as deflationary as anything Dawkins, Dennett, Hitchens or I say about the cherished doctrines of the faithful.

I don’t know Eagleman, but I’ve invited him to discuss these and other issues with me on this blog. He also has a book out on the brain that looks very interesting and which I intend to read:

Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain

This is the kind of thing that pastors should do, but they don’t.

Let’s go Sam Harris and David Eagleman … bore us with your word fight!

When your tramp stamp is an Ichthys

Image via Wikipedia

Over the weekend, I saw a hot girl with a sweet tramp stamp tattoo. You know … the lower back tattoos that all the cool girls have.

I wish I had the chance to take a photo of it. The girl was probably 22 or 23. Gorgeous brunette with a great figure. And then there was the tattoo on her lower back, just above her bikini bottoms.

It was of the Jesus Fish, a.k.a. an Ichthys which is an ancient Greek symbol based on the vesica piscis.

Most of you know that the cross didn’t become the major Christian icon until the fourth or fifth century. For a long time, the fish represented Jesus, and there are plenty of ideas to back up why the math that makes up these  “fish” represented Jesus.

Regardless, you would wonder why in the world a young woman wanted to remind her lovers about Jesus. This is quite possibly proselytization at its best.

“Hey baby, while you’re back there … let me tell you about … holymotherfucking JESUS!!!

I love this visual and aural imagination moment.


Thom Hartmann: Atheists vs. Rick Perry over Christian prayer

This video is a “must watch”, because I feel like I just had this conversation recently. I feel like I was arguing from Thom Hartmann’s position, and the person I was arguing with was speaking from Dr. Carol Swain’s. In my mind’s eye, I feel like it was my conversation verbatim.

The only difference is that I am an atheist, and Hartmann is a Christian.

One of the BEST things my education at a conservative, evangelical Christian school taught me was exactly what Hartmann’s advocating. It’s that government should keep its paws out of promoting one religion over another. That there is a separation of church and state, and it’s for a good reason.

When did the evangelicals change their message? And what moron voted Swain into that seat as a representative of the evangelical position?

I can say, with trepidation, that if Christianity were more unified in its goals, that maybe a religious majority would have a better chance of being better heard in the public sphere. But since it is splintered and tattered, evangelicals have hurt their chances of getting their message out there in tact, based entirely on the idea that they have a broken message.

To be clear, Hartmann is the voice of great reason. He is speaking rationally, intelligently and outsmarting Swain by a HUGE margin. Hartmann deserves our accolades, and I could only hope that more Christians would follow his lead, instead of bumbling behind the idiocy that Swain is promoting.

I liked what redditor unfinite says in the comments at Reddit:

He should have played the race card. Replace anything she said about atheists with “blacks” and she would have had a shitfit.

“America was founded as a white nation with Judeo-Christian values such as slavery, and we’ve gotten away from those principals because of the blacks.”

“Up until the Civil Rights Movement of the 60’s we had racial discrimination in school, and it was a black that got rid of that. And since the 1960’s our country has been in decline.”

“I think that the blacks have really hurt our nation. The overwhelming majority of Americans are whites. The blacks are a small minority making trouble.”

“America needs to change course. We’re following the wrong path, and a lot of it is coming from the blacks. They are leading us down the wrong path.”

“Whites are the only ones in America under siege. The blacks are everywhere. They’re trying to use our water fountains, sit in our bus seats. They’re been there for 50-60 years and all of a sudden the blacks are so concerned about them.”

Via Reddit

Sleeping with the fishes

Maybe that’s not an entirely appropriate headline. No one I know has died.

I’ve been looking through photography from last year’s trip to Thailand and Cambodia. Since we aren’t a culture who doesn’t often leave the head on served food, I wanted to post this shot of an entrée we ate outside of Chiang Mai.

I also recently posted these shots at my pro site. You should check ’em out!