The Humanist Advocate

BOOK REVIEW: Unweaving the Rainbow: Science, Delusion, and the Appetite for Wonder

Richard Dawkins, 1998, Houghton Mifflin Co. The title of this book comes from a line in John Keats’ poem ‘Lamia.’ In one verse of that poem, Keats accused Newton of unweaving the rainbow, having destroyed the beauty of the rainbow by explaining the physical principles that result in the formation of rainbows. Dawkins, in defense of Newton, argues through many enlightening examples that an understanding of our physical reality in terms of its own laws leads to an appreciation of…

Therapy group forming for secular humanists…

Taking the idea from New York City Atheists, addressing the question as to counseling help for nonbelievers, NOSHA is proposing the formation of a therapy group for its members with psychological, emotional or other personal problems. New York calls its group “Living Without Religion,” led by a psychotherapist. Their group “will meet once a month, with the goal of helping each other resolve our personal problems through reason, scientific knowledge, empathy, logic and understanding. There will be no charge for…

Is Science Compatible with Religion?

Even if you think you know the answer, it never hurts to hear from some “experts.” ****************************** SELU Forum: Is Science Compatible with Religion? This will be a panel discussion consisting of representatives from the two sides: •Dr. Barbara Forrest•Adam Hicks•Dr. David Norwood•Dr. Matt Rossano•Doug Stewart•Dr. James Walter•Dr. Frank Tipler The dialog will conclude with an audience question & answer session. Tuesday, November 177:00 PM Southeastern Louisiana UniversityStudent Union Theatre303 Texas Ave.Hammond, LA 70402 You can park in the lot…

Are women second class citizens?

I’m curious….in light of the Stupak Amendment passing, does anyone else think that perhaps we really do live in a society that honestly thinks of women as second class citizens who don’t warrant respect for our bodies or reproductive health needs? (Or at least when certain religious viewpoints such as the “Bishops’ Caucus” are given credence over medical decisions in our political system.) And before you reject this comment out of hand, consider that when religious opinions are brought into…

Best Halloween Costume of 2009?!!

My good friend Pope Ratzi sent me this photo from his visit to the French Quarter on Halloween night. It’s his submission to the Best Costume on Bourbon Street contest of 2009. What do you think? I know. Tasteless! Assaulting! But you can’t deny that it is absolutely funny as hell if you ignore the terrible truth behind it. But I don’t know if we can or should ignore this. It’s what keeps atheists up at night. Think about it….a…

Veneration and the leg bone….

I know many of you can’t conceive of anything as bizarre as viewing a relic and expecting to take away something emotionally or spiritually important from it. Well, that’s what happened here here in New Orleans over Halloween weekend. Mary Magdalene’s leg bone was on display at a Catholic church on Canal Street. How do they know it was her leg bone? I don’t know, but perhaps it was authenticated in some way. I don’t see this as any different…

How do atheists reconcile the Home Depot button controversy?

Don’t know much about the Home Depot button controversy? Well, you should. Trevor Keezer, the Home Depot employee at the heart of the situation is an interesting study in contradictions. On the one hand, he says he doesn’t make a habit of touting his religious beliefs, but on the other hand, he says that he couldn’t take off the button because the issue as he saw it was “bigger” than he is. “It never crossed my mind to take off…

Evangelical Philosophical Society to host Apologetics Conference

The Evangelical Philosophical Society will be hosting the 7th Annual Apologetics Conference in New Orleans on the evenings of Thursday, November 19, Friday, November 20 and the morning of Saturday, November 21. This year’s theme is “Come, Let Us Reason: Rooting Your Faith in Knowledge.” Some of the topics will include: “New Atheists, Old Atheists and Old Apologists” Dr. Timothy McGrew The arguments of contemporary atheists against Christianity are for the most part borrowed from atheists and freethinkers of centuries…

Does the Saints’ game prove there is a god?

And I’m not talking about a Catholic saints pick-up basketball game either? No, I’m referring to the come-from-behind win against the Miami Dolphins that kept our mutual delirium going for at least another eight more days. For any of you who don’t know what I’m talking about (or don’t care much for Sunday football), please indulge the philosphy of this question. I can’t imagine that there isn’t at least one real Saints fan somewhere out there (who also happens to…

Rally for Equality at New Orleans City Hall

For Immediate ReleaseOctober 23, 2009 New Orleans – The steps of New Orleans City Hall will be the site of a Rally for Equality, to be held on November 7, 2009 from noon to 1 p.m. This rally will signal support for equality and justice for all, and highlight the problems that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals face in Louisiana and across the nation. Organized by the ACLU of Louisiana, Big Easy Metropolitan Community Church, Forum For Equality, the…