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228648_442036833526_3211433_n[1]10 Problems With How We Think

By nature, human beings are illogical and irrational. For most of our existence, survival meant thinking quickly, not methodically. Making a life-saving decision was more important than making a 100% accurate one, so the human brain developed an array of mental shortcuts. [Read more]

A New Timeline for Mysterious Permian Extinction

252 million years ago, a massive amount of carbon was released into the Earth’s atmosphere. Where did it come from? We’re not sure. But we do know that the chemistry of the Earth’s oceans changed drastically, and up to 96 percent of all marine species became extinct. [Read more]

You CAN Predict the Future, and Influence It Too

We are better than ever at making predictions – whether you’re going to click, lie, buy or die, as Eric Siegel puts it. In a lesson on Big Think Edge, the only forum on YouTube designed to help you get the skills you need to be successful in a rapidly changing world, Siegel, a former professor at Columbia University, shows how predictive analytics is “powered by the world’s most potent, booming unnatural resource: data.” [Read more]

The Trouble with Darwin

Like many others, I watched the recent debate between Bill Nye and Ken Ham with a queer mixture of awe and déjà vu. Who knew that 89 years later, we’d still be litigating the Scopes trial? As someone trained in the sciences, I find it horrifying that there are college-educated people in the U.S. (and around the world) who believe the earth is 6,000 years old; and yet at the same time, I have a certain amount of discomfort, myself, with evolutionary theory—not because it demeans the nobility of man or denies the Bible, or anything of that sort, but because it’s such an incomplete and unsatisfying theory on purely scientific grounds. (Many physicists feel much the same way about quantum theory.) [Read more]

What is the Difference between a Sage and a Philosopher?

Philosophy is concerned with fundamental problems regarding existence, values, mind, language, etc., by a critical, systematic approach that relies on logical argument and reason. Academic philosophy, on the other hand, is distinguished from the activity philosophizing by a pre-set of technical terms and pre-existing concepts, curriculum, and methodology that take years of study to internalize. [Read more]

America’s Continued Sexual Immaturity

French president Francois Hollande might be upset that his alleged affair with actress Julie Gayet became public, but one thing that has not changed is the French public’s perception of him. While his personal approval rating has been on the decline in general, it had nothing to do with his love life: a poll revealed that more than 80% of French respondents did not judge him because of his recent actions. That would never happen in America. [Read more]

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Atheism & Godlessness in Iraq

Being an atheist can be difficult in America, but it’s far more of a hardship in many other nations where prejudice against atheists can be a death sentence. One of those dangerous countries is Iraq and there are presumably very few atheists. There is, however, one who goes by the pseudonym Omar Al-Baghdadi. [Read more]

Atheists & Christians on Teaching Creationism in American Public Schools

Everywhere across America, there are regular conflicts over teaching creationism in public schools. Courts have consistently struck down creationist schemes to get religious instruction introduced into science classes, but 59% of all Americans and 86% of all evangelical Christians still believe that schools should include creationism in school lessons. [Read more]

What’s So ‘New’ About ‘New Atheism’? What is New Atheism?

You can see a lot of references to “new atheism” and “new atheists” in the media today, but when was the last time you saw anyone use these terms and actually explain what they mean? When was the last time you saw someone clearly explain and define what it was they were criticizing when they attacked “new atheists” and “new atheism”? You almost certainly haven’t, but it’s used so negatively so consistently that the impression is created that “everyone knows” what it means, if as no one can quite define it. [Read more]

Kentucky snake handling preacher, reality TV star dead from snake bite

24737348_BG1[1]MIDDLESBORO, KY (WATE) – Jamie Coots, a preacher known for snake handling, as well as being the focus of a reality TV show, died Saturday after being bitten by a snake. According to the Middlesboro Police Department, emergency crews responded to reports of a possible snakebite victim at a church on Evans Drive around 8:30 p.m., but say the victim had already left the scene by the time they arrived. [Read more]

Missouri GOP Still Wants Kids To Be Stupid, Introduces Anti-Science Bill

Republicans refuse to take no for an answer. Time and time again, anti-science bills aimed at killing biology in schools have failed. But Christian conservatives are trying again anyway with a new bill. [Read more]

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