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Poetic atheism, cont’d: “I can live with doubt and uncertainty and not knowing. I think it’s much more interesting.”

Richard Feynman beautifully explains his take on the universe: Check out the rest of The Feynman Series (companion to the also-excellent Sagan Series) here. More on poetic atheism here. And my thoughts on how science thrives on open questions here. … Continue reading

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Poetic atheism: other voices

Once we’re attuned to this kind of rapturous embrace of the real, it seems to pop up everywhere. Here’s Neil deGrasse Tyson, practically religious in his description of our oneness with the universe:

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Poetic atheism

From Jennifer Michael Hecht, on the blog Unreasonable Faith: The truth may be real but it is not “matter of fact.” What in fact we have here is a billion fantastically sexy weird interesting stories all going on at once … Continue reading

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Falling upward

In her marvelous essay “The Wetfooted Understory,” written for the collection The Joy of Secularism, Rebecca Stott examines the idea of “transcendence” and how to approach it from a secular perspective. A key passage: [I suspect] that the idea of … Continue reading

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On government, humanism, and Tony Bennett

Reason #5,167 why government matters: because Tony Bennett is absolutely sublime*… …and he wouldn’t be who he is if the G.I. Bill didn’t play a big part in his musical education. From an interview on NPR: I had very good … Continue reading

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Thriving on open questions: science, religion, and spirituality

“There are two great powers,” the man said, “and they’ve been fighting since time began. Every advance in human life, every scrap of knowledge and wisdom and decency we have has been torn by one side from the teeth of … Continue reading

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David Attenborough, humanist: “That’s what being alive is about”

I love all of David Attenborough’s work that I’ve seen — from the documentary series Life on Earth that I watched as a child, through to his narration on the gorgeously produced Planet Earth and its follow-ups. Here he makes … Continue reading

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Can science answer moral questions?

Sam Harris thinks it can: “There are truths to be known about how human communities flourish whether or not we understand these truths. And morality relates to these truths. So in talking about values, we are talking about facts.” Some … Continue reading

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The Ten Commandments 2.0, cont’d: Walt Whitman

Following up on my post about humanist alternatives to the Ten Commandments, here is Walt Whitman (from his 1855 Preface to Leaves of Grass): This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, … Continue reading

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Becoming human, cont’d.

The New York Times has a review of the new David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History, which includes the fascinating hominid reconstructions I wrote about earlier. This part was particularly interesting:

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