Sunday, June 7
Shadow

Evolution

Growing An Intellectual Conscience

Growing An Intellectual Conscience

anthropic principle, Atheism, Big Bang, Christianity, conflict, conservatism, Cosmology, Creation, Creator, critical judgment, culture, curiosity, Education, epistemology, Ethics, Evangelicalism, Evidence, Evolution, faith, Fundamentalism, God, Ideology, Imagination, monotheism, Myth, Mythology, Nature, Pain and Suffering, Philosophy, Rationality, Religion, Science, Scripture, Secularity
Sometimes I am driven, against my more charitable instincts, to wonder just what it takes for advocates of creationism and intelligent design (ID) to grow an intellectual conscience.  I am referring, of course, to people who should know better, in fact, people who have no business not knowing better. The latest example is courtesy of Howard Smith, as cited in a recent issue of David Klinghoffer’s creationist / ID blog EvolutionNews.org.  In that blog, Smith – or perhaps Klinghoffer’s citation of Smith’s text – irresponsibly misquotes Prof. Stephen Hawking and misrepresents the Anthropic Principle so as to misinterpret both as lending support to Klinghoffer’s blatantly creationist agenda. Klinghoffer cites Smith as claiming that Hawking asserted on a TV documentary Reality on the...
God As NON-Magician

God As NON-Magician

Atheism, autonomy, Big Bang, Christianity, conservatism, contraception, Creation, Creator, critical judgment, culture, curiosity, Easter, Empty Tomb, epistemology, Evolution, Fundamentalism, Myth, Nature, Ockham's Razor, Randomness, Religion, Science, Scripture, Uncategorized
I like Pope Francis I. His openness to sexual-orientation minorities and his solicitude toward the poor are in marked contrast to the hard-line intransigence more characteristic of past Pontiffs.  Church teachings about abortion, birth control – the “life” issues generally – and such matters as women’s ordination and same-sex marriage remain substantially unchanged.  (I say “substantially” because, even on some of these issues, the Pope’s recent statements have been interestingly nuanced. God – so to speak – is in the details.)  Bill Maher often says he strongly suspects that Pope Francis – “Pope Frank” as Maher sometimes calls him – is actually a closet atheist.  (I think Maher is only half serious about such statements. But the operative word is “half”:  I do think Maher is half s...
First Annual Cliche Festival — Part Deux

First Annual Cliche Festival — Part Deux

Creation, Entropy, Evolution, Ideology, mathematics, physics, Randomness, Religion, Science, Statistics, Thermodynamics, Universe
Upon skimming this column, your first thought might well be – as I hope for your sake it is – Why is Cowles writing about this? Didn’t everyone long ago receive the tweet debunking those bullet points? Would to the Great Old Ones – Ia! Cthulhu nafl’fhtagn! – that such were the case. But time and again, I see the following arguments being reiterated, rising just when we thought they were safely dead to shamble across the intellectual landscape of American culture like zombie refugees from The Walking Dead or Z Nation who did not receive a proper “double-tap” on the amygdala. So, like Rick Grimes or Michonne from the former, or like Roberta Warren or Addison “Addy” Carver from the latter, I guess I’ll have heave a deep sigh and have another shot at it … as it were. Ah! If only I had a ni...