Mar 292011
 

Got this Reuters article via richarddawkins.net:

Islamic countries set aside their 12-year campaign to have religions protected from "defamation", allowing the U.N. Human Rights Council to approve a plan to promote religious tolerance on Thursday.

Western countries and their Latin American allies, strong opponents of the defamation concept, joined Muslim and African states in backing without vote the new approach that switches focus from protecting beliefs to protecting believers.

By ROBERT EVANS – REUTERS

Rationality, critical thinking, the tools of science, have shown not only no evidence for gods but also no requirement for gods. Religions are a human construct, all flawed, but some more than others. The barbarity of religions, the enslavement of the religious, are sufficient to earn scorn and contempt. There is certainly no case for respect. The religious can be seen as both victim and villain but, in both cases, irreverence is a useful method to allow the enslaved to break free and for the slavers to be toppled. I therefore view any initiatives to “protect” religions or the religious as nothing more than a mechanism to expand the ignorance that religions bring and as an attack on human progress. Religions have not earned special privileges and the sooner such privileges are stripped away the better. Religions, therefore, are to be resisted and fought, even if that means “offending”.

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011

Mar 272011
 

Further to  Atheism – A History of God (Part 1), Evid3nc3 has now posted Atheism: A History of God (Part 2). This video is one in a series that Evid3nc3 is doing that explains, in detail, his journey from being a devout Christian to becoming an atheist.

3.3.3 Atheism: A History of God (Part 2)

On a related topic, I stumbled across tenneral’s YouTube Channel. Tenneral used to be religious (a Roman Catholic convert) but has managed to break himself free from the shackles of religion. He has posted a number of rather delightful, witty and insightful videos which I’ve enjoyed immensely. One video in particular I’m still Appalled! discusses Peter de Rosa’s book “Vicars of Christ” which goes on to describe the various Roman Catholic popes who, for the most part, turn out to be rather odious people.

I’m still Appalled!

Christianity may not be as barbaric as it once was and has changed but, as Tenneral says, it hasn’t changed enough.

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011

Leaving Islam

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Mar 272011
 

A couple of recent articles at richarddawkins.net today with videos.

One video summarises the story of a young person’s journey from Islam to freedom:

alyraly’s “Why I left Islam!”

The other articles has two videos that tell the story of Wafa Sultan and her journey from being born a Muslim to becoming one of Islam’s harshest critics for Islam’s perpetuation of backwards thinking and enslavement of women:

Al-Jazeera TV (Qatar) Interview With Wafa Sultan – 2006

 

Why I Left Islam – Wafa Sultan

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011

Mar 262011
 

Here’s a sad story of a Muslim cleric who is also a scientist. He tried to expound evolution to Muslims but he experienced a backlash from the religious and, coupled with thinly veiled threats, was forced to backtrack on his previous evolution statements:

I’ve already posted that scientists that are religious are in a dubious position, and it is perhaps that rational/irrational compartmentation that blinded him to the possibility of the vehemence inflicted upon him by a large swath of the ignorant.

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011

Mar 262011
 

Science is the search for truth. It is a rational mechanism that uses logic, evidence and other facts to formulate theories to arrive at the truth. Religion is at odds with this rationality and thus those who advocate religion are deluded. And those scientists who claim compatibly of religion with truth in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary must do a pretty good job of compartmentalising the irrationality of religion from their rational thoughts. But, then, humans are not always consistent or rational in what they do which makes the scientific process an absolutely critical method to progress.

Religion is not compatible with truth. Religion is an intellectual prison, a method of control, a method of suppression and repression, which blinds the religious to the truth. It’s about time humanity broke free of its shackles, to experience the truth, to experience the excitement, wonders and mysteries of this planet and the universe.

That is why I believe that organisations such as the Templeton Foundation and BioLogos are fraudulent in what they do.

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011

Mar 242011
 

With all the recent promising embryonic revolutions occurring in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia is one place where I hope that change occurs. It has an oppressive and non-democratic regime with all kinds of barbaric and backward religious dogmas and customs. The “Saudi Women Revolution Statement” is a positive sign though. There’s always hope and this group deserves support:

1113

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011

Mar 152011
 

Today I downloaded and installed the non-beta version of IE9 (version 9.0.8112.16421) and checked out Microsoft’s “Color Management” site at http://ie.microsoft.com/testdrive/Graphics/ColorProfiles/Default.html. At first everything looked well with indications that this version of IE9 on my system had full ICC v2 and ICC v4 colour profile support. But then I compared the colours with Firefox 3.6.15 (which has had full colour management switched on). IE9’s colours were way too saturated compared to Firefox. I then checked the images on my website and immediately noticed that IE9 was, in fact, displaying colours with too much saturation.

And I think I know what is happening. IE9 was taking tagged images and converting to sRGB which are then displayed in the monitor’s colour profile space i.e. IE9 assumes that you have an sRGB monitor; I use a wide gamut monitor so the colours are “stretched” into saturation areas where they don’t belong. In other words, IE9’s colour management is not real colour management.

But what really gets my goat is this Microsoft statement at the “Color Management” site referenced above:

Does your browser display the colors in these images correctly? Internet Explorer 9 supports embedded ICC version 2 and version 4 color profiles in images, converting the colors in images to display correctly on your monitor.

The key thing from that statement is “converting the colors in images to display correctly on your monitor”. This is a complete lie! The images are not displayed correctly on my monitor but the kludge may work fine with non wide-gamut sRGB monitors. So those who have invested in colour systems are the ones who get screwed and lied to by Microsoft. Why Microsoft, why?

Further resources on monitor calibration and colour profiling can be found at http://www.metalvortex.com/chart/

Article by Kulvinder Singh Matharu – 2011