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Now an Agnostic...

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Re: Now an Agnostic...

Postby mata_hari » Mon Jun 01, 2009 6:44 pm

Just wanted to include some book titles:

The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark - Carl Sagan

Why People Believe Weird Things: Pseudoscience, Superstition, and Other Confusions of Our Time - Michael Shermer & Stephen Jay Gould

How We Know What Isn't So: The Fallibility of Human Reason in Everyday Life - Thomas Gilovich.

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds - Charles McKay

Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism - Susan Jacoby

Letting Go of God: Julia Sweeney (Also Audio)

On the Origin of Species - Charles Darwin

Why Darwin Matters: The Case Against Intelligent Design - Michael Shermer

Death from the Skies!: These Are the Ways the World Will End - Phil Plait

Bad Astronomy: Misconceptions and Misuses Revealed, from Astrology to the Moon Landing "Hoax" - Phil Plait

I would also recommend checking out some of the science and skeptical podcasts that are out there. The Skeptic's Guide to the Universe, The Naked Scientists, All in the Mind, Quackcast, there is also Reasonable Doubts and The Atheist Experience which might interest you.

I think exploring science as an alternative is a great idea, and I would add that you should have fun with it and find things that really interest you.


Sorry for posting so much, but I figure the more variety you have the better chance you'll find something that clicks with you.
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Re: Now an Agnostic...

Postby Azazello » Sun Dec 25, 2011 11:11 pm

I would like to recommend a few books myself.
The greatest show on earth by Richard Dawkins
After Man- A zoology of the future by Dougal Dixon.
Knowing others is intelligent, Knowing yourself is enlightenment- Tao Te Ching
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Re: Now an Agnostic...

Postby HesDeltanCaptain » Sun May 26, 2013 7:31 pm

Religion's attractive since we all know we're mortal. And only religion claims that when we die consciousness continues (with a few exceptions like Buddhism's Nirvanna which is an end to consciousness.) And even aside from that promise, religion's offers structure and something higher than other people. Unfortunately, it's also a lure for people looking to use Ultimate Authority for their own aims be it personal glory, power, wealth, whatever else.

Instead of regarding religiousity as an either/or proposition try to regard whatever religion you're part of as 'valid or invalid.' And start with this: If it were ever somehow proven G-d (or whoever) didn't exist, would my faith still be valid?

As a Jew, my faith is sensible (more or less heh) whether G-d ultimately exists or not. But because I don't believe in G-d I don't defer to rabbinical authority. Clergy are just people, some are genuine and sincere and good, but most I suspect are playing a part. If you could read their minds you'd see they don't believe either.

Religion began serving a critically needed purpose: uniting disparate peoples under one banner and form of rule. Now with international business cooperation and vastly large nations and treaties uniting different ones, religion's purpose has waned. In some ways it's gotten better, but in the more 'fundamentalist' guises it's gone the way and gotten much worse.

Ultimately, if you can't prove your deity exists your religion falls apart. And since most religions can't prove their deitiy exists without using the religion's texts themselves (well duh, what else are they going to say but it exists?) religion's ultimately about whether the rules make sense whether or not the deity they're about exists or not.
"I'd rather be hated for who I am, than loved for who I pretended to be." - Me.
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