Transubstantiation, Halal and Kosher – How Food Becomes Magical

  A couple of years ago I attended a funeral of a friend of mine’s father, who passed away after a long battle with cancer. The attendees were mostly of Italian backgrounds, and mostly Roman Catholic, and I stood at the back, a lone atheist in a sea of belief, mostly there in support of my friend during a difficult and sad time in his life. A larger than life-sized Jesus hung next to the altar, seemingly magically suspended about a...

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The Great Flood – How Collective Memory Can Become Legend

  Image: Gustave DorĂ© – The Holy Bible – Plate I, The Deluge – Via Wikipedia One of the world’s most striking features, and the largest living mass on the planet, is the Great Barrier Reef in northeastern Australia, up to 200 km off the coast of the state of Queensland. Home to over 14,000 individual species of plants and animals, it is one of the richest marine environments on earth, stretching over a distance of...

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Teach Not Preach

  I GOT MAIL! Yeah, I get mail all the time, but this one caught my eye. It came from James Morrison, who writes: I am a public high school teacher in Red Wing, Minnesota. I teach a course that critically examines religion. What I do is extremely rare. Extremely! I recently started a blog about my experiences, and I think your followers might find it of interest (especially my most recent post). The site is below. Have a great day!...

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The Rape Blame Game

  Unless you live under a rock, you would have heard about the Steubenville rape case, in which two teenage boys took advantage of a sixteen year old girl while she was inebriated from a night’s worth of drinking. The case brought forward many aspects of current popular culture that I’d like to explore, and also made me ask some very difficult questions about the nature of humanity. First and foremost, I have no doubt that the...

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Respect for Superstition?

  Last week I posted to Twitter a comment which I thought was rather innocuous and self explanatory, but which received a rather large backlash from strangers. The comment was: I respect your right to have beliefs. This doesn’t necessarily mean I respect your beliefs. Of the many comments I received over this Tweet, one thing was completely clear. Those who demand respect for their beliefs cannot give you a reason why you...

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