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Michael Shermer

Has Science Made Us Better People?

The Daily Beast | Jake Whitney | Posted 02.17.2015 | World

The Charlie Hebdo massacre occurred on the same day I received my copy of The Moral Arc, Michael Shermer’s new book about how science and reason hav...

A Conversation Between Two Atheists From Muslim Backgrounds (Part 3)

Ali A. Rizvi | Posted 11.04.2014 | Politics
Ali A. Rizvi

We recently decided to have an extended email conversation addressing the Islamic State (ISIS) in Faisal's home country of Iraq, being called an "Uncle Tom" by white people, the existence -- or non-existence -- of a "moderate" Islam, and the one key factor needed to bring about a true Islamic reformation.

Disbelief Doesn't Cure Discrimination

Roy Speckhardt | Posted 04.27.2014 | Religion
Roy Speckhardt

Humanists and other secular-minded people of every level need to understand that "isms" like sexism and racism don't go away just because we identify as atheists or humanists. We need to unpack our privileges and cultural baggage in order to stop discriminatory behavior.

'Liberal War' Debunked

Mother Jones | Posted 03.05.2013 | Politics

In general, I'm no fan of intellectual whack-a-mole....

What Folding Chairs Taught Me About Skepticism

Ben Thomas | Posted 04.05.2013 | TED Weekends
Ben Thomas

What is it that separates everyday trust -- everyday leaps of faith, even -- from the kinds of ironclad beliefs that inspire jihads; crusades; leper-kissing; cathedral-building? How does one become so utterly sure of an idea that rests on so many unproven assumptions?

Are We All Just Wired for Anxiety?

Ben Michaelis, Ph.D. | Posted 04.05.2013 | TED Weekends
Ben Michaelis, Ph.D.

If Shermer is right (and he is), and that our default setting is to see patterns where they don't exist because the cost of being wrong (that there is no pattern) is usually much higher than the cost of being right (that there is a pattern) then I have some bad news for you.

How Much Does 'True Belief' Cost?

Patricia Adair Gowaty | Posted 04.04.2013 | TED Weekends
Patricia Adair Gowaty

Sometimes the cost of believing something is true when it is false (being a "true believer") is gravely expensive compared to the cost of a believing something false when it is true (being a skeptic).

How Self-Deception Can Be Psychologically Healthy

Douglas LaBier | Posted 04.04.2013 | TED Weekends
Douglas LaBier

Both research studies and clinical evidence from psychotherapy show that a strong belief or expectation about achieving a goal or overcoming a problem can have a powerful impact upon what actually happens in your life.

Santa, Self-Deception, And The Survival Instinct

Laura Cococcia | Posted 02.04.2015 | TED Weekends
Laura Cococcia

2013-01-18-TEDplayvideo"Self-deception" might seem like a fairly heavy-handed term to use in describing the average 5-year-old's belief in Santa Claus. So let's extend the metaphor, as Michael Shermer does, back to our ancestors.

The Evolutionary Need To Believe

Art Markman, Ph.D. | Posted 04.03.2013 | TED Weekends
Art Markman, Ph.D.

2013-01-18-TEDplayvideoWe need to trust that the facts, concepts, and explanations that we get from the people around us are generally truthful. There is so much to learn, that when we are exposed to an idea our default is to believe that it is true.

Cara Santa Maria

WATCH: Does Prayer Work? | Cara Santa Maria | Posted 05.10.2012 | Science

An overwhelming 83 percent of Americans say that God answers prayers--which raises the question, does prayer work? Is it something that we can even be...

Science, Religion Incompatible? Scientist, Skeptic Join Debate

Posted 03.09.2012 | Science

Do you believe in God? Or do you put your faith in science? Some argue that it has to be one or the other--that either you accept scientific dogma...

Santorum, Cardinal Dolan And The Tinfoil Hat: Who Gets Into The Public Square?

G. Elijah Dann | Posted 05.05.2012 | Religion
G. Elijah Dann

Santorum and Dolan are at least right on one point. No one should be saying that religious people can't participate in the public square. The reality is, however, the public square has a cacophony of voices.

Cara Santa Maria

WATCH: Why People Believe Strange Things | Cara Santa Maria | Posted 11.30.2011 | Education

2011-11-30-Screenshot20111130at5.48.25PM.jpgHave you ever wondered why otherwise intelligent people believe things that don't seem to be grounded in reality or reason?

WATCH: Colbert Evangelizes 'Believing Brain' Author

Posted 09.11.2011 | Religion

Is science just a system of beliefs like any religion? ...

Of Testosterone and Pheromones

Michael Shermer | Posted 05.25.2011 | Entertainment
Michael Shermer

Client 9 is unabashedly sympathetic to Eliot Spitzer. Spitzer makes no excuses for either his overweening ambition as the left's lawman against Corporate Corruption or for his biblical-like fall from grace.

Deepak Chopra Debates Existence Of Higher Power With Skeptics On ABC's Nightline (VIDEO)

Posted 03.13.2012 | Healthy Living

Egos clashed on ABC's Nightline when modern-day guru Deepak Chopra entered a week-long debate against arch athiest Dr. Michael Shermer. The debate was...

Which Is Real, the Moon or God?

Deepak Chopra | Posted 05.25.2011 | Religion
Deepak Chopra

Consciousness, or God, also permeates creation once it appeared. We know this because we partake of consciousness, creativity, and intelligence. Where could we get those qualities if God, the source of consciousness, were gone?

The 'Future of God' Debate

Dr. Jean Houston | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Dr. Jean Houston

The Infinite self directs the development of the finite self, and the finite self offers joy and knowledge to the Infinite self. This is the Paradox of partnership resolved. One must overcome the illusion of separation.

Does God have a Future?

Deepak Chopra | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home
Deepak Chopra

Upcoming Caltech Lecture Does God have a Future? A Great Debate Filmed by ABC's Nightline * Event Date: Sunday, March 14, 2010 at 2:00 pm * ...

Atheists For Haiti

Michael Shermer | Posted 05.25.2011 | Home
Michael Shermer

On Friday, January 15, I received in email from Richard Dawkins explaining that his Executive Director Elizabeth Cornwell has organized a campaign to ...

Is Science Just a New Religion?

Cara Santa Maria | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Cara Santa Maria

Once intelligent design squeezes its way into the pages following evolution in our biology books, we might as well add astrology to our astrophysics lectures and toss some alchemy into the chemistry lab.

The Great Debate

Deepak Chopra | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Deepak Chopra

Dear Friends, On March 14th, Michael Shermer and I will be debating the topic, "Does the Mind Exist Apart from the Brain?" The event will take place ...

Woo Woo Is a Step Ahead of (Bad) Science

Deepak Chopra | Posted 11.17.2011 | Healthy Living
Deepak Chopra

For those who aren't familiar with the term, "woo woo" is a derogatory reference to almost any form of unconventional thinking, aimed by professional skeptics.

Does God Have a Future? The Great Debate

Michael Shermer | Posted 05.25.2011 | Books
Michael Shermer

Deepak Chopra & Jean Houston v. Michael Shermer & Sam Harris Sunday, March 14, 2:00pm, Beckman Auditorium, Caltech A Debate Filmed by ABC's Nightlin...