The evangelical atheists and Mormon anti-evolutionists have joined forces

My belief in God is not founded on evidence from the physical world. I believe because I am in a relationship with Him. I’ve gotten to know Him. I recognize his voice in others.

I want to argue that some of the suspicion that exists between certain Mormon Saints and science is grounded in not recognizing this relationship is the fundamental relation in knowing God. Oddly enough I see the fundamentalist atheists and LDS saints who fear evolution as arguing from the same flawed assumptions. Continue reading The evangelical atheists and Mormon anti-evolutionists have joined forces

Removing the lion-skin from the donkey

I am often amazed that Intelligent Design as gained such following among certain members of the church. Perhaps because it seems to have the ring of things we do believe. I mean we do believe that God is Intelligent after all, and we do believe that we are here by Design, so Intelligent Design must be right. Right? Wrong. Continue reading Removing the lion-skin from the donkey

Schenk Forest and Orchards

As I contemplate the New Year, I’ve been thinking about manmade semi-wild places and what they mean to me. I’m about to teach a class called Religion and the Environment. I’ve watched with interest the debates this year about protecting wild places. And while I love the wild places, lately I’ve been thinking about the sort-of wild places: parks, orchards, and places the canal on which I take my daily jog. Continue reading Schenk Forest and Orchards

Flying Monkeys Illustrate the Evolution of Religion (as I win a bike race against an invisible rider)

To get at the possibility of the evolution of spirituality let’s take a diversion into current attempts by evolutionary biologists to explain the evolution of religion. Pascal Boyer speculates that religion arose as part of evolving human cognitive abilities.

First, the mind evolved to the point it was able to imagine possibilities that do not exist in reality. We can consider counterfactuals. We can combine the stuff of thought in new ways that suggests possible worlds that really have no necessary tie to reality. Continue reading Flying Monkeys Illustrate the Evolution of Religion (as I win a bike race against an invisible rider)

Dueling Dualists: In which I use the word screwywompous

    “Ah, good, Data. At least you’re functioning.”
    “Fully, Captain.”
    “Data, intoxication is a human condition. Your brain is different, not the same as–”
    “We are more alike than unlike, my dear Captain. I have pores, humans have pores. I have fingerprints, humans have fingerprints. My chemical nutrients are like your blood. If you prick me, do I not .. leak?”
    1. Picard and Data in Star Trek the Next Generation “The Naked Now”

  • The easy answer is that Mormons believe that our spirit that gives us consciousness. Continue reading Dueling Dualists: In which I use the word screwywompous

    Running on our inner ape


    Homo erectus

    I do not think running meant anything until I had been in the Army for a couple of years. We went on two-mile runs on a regular basis, but I hated it. We ran in formation in long lines, singing songs led by a drill sergeant who would shout a line and we would return it or shout back given responses. I wish I could remember some of these, but they have all disappeared except for fragments like, “A yellow bird, (echo) with a yellow bill, (echo) was sitting on, (echo) my windowsill.” Where the (echo) was us echoing what the cadence caller had just shouted/sang. There was lots of swearing. Continue reading Running on our inner ape

    My Abstract for the Evolution: the Experince Conference

    Evolution: the Experience is an upcoming confrence held in Melbourne, Australia in February 2009: Here is a discription.

    Her left brain is nuked and she glimpses something of her spirit

    I have described my own loss of mental functioning (here) and have explored the deep physicality of our brain/mind interface in this blog. In a recent book, My Stroke of Insight, Jill Bolte Taylor writes about a brain hemorrhage in which she loses the left side of her brain due to a massive stroke. Continue reading Her left brain is nuked and she glimpses something of her spirit

    Guest Blogging at By Common Consent

    If I’ve seemed slow on this site, it’s because I’m guest blogging over at By Common Consent. Plus, as everyone who knows me knows, I’m lazy.

    I’ve done four over there so far: The dead thing in my can of tuna, Some things too sacred to share, Should we teach our children that . . . → Read More: Guest Blogging at By Common Consent

    What we can learn from a witch’s blessing on a compost pile

    Starhawk’s book, Earth Path, offers the following blessing on a compost pile. (There really is something very magical and trusting about even thinking of offering a blessing on a compost pile):