Non-overlapping magisteria (NOMA)

It is easily demonstrated that non-overlapping magisteria (NOMA) is an invalid construct; science is the process used to gain an understanding of the world and, as religions claim superstitious phenomena interact with the world, then that phenomena is subject to scientific analysis. The religious deny this, of course, and cling to NOMA. Those particularly fond of NOMA are the so-called accomodationists who want to claim the beauty of science alongside the irrational and the nonsense of religion. Their cognitive dissonance, or delusion, can be highly ingrained. I, therefore, try and link to resources that highlight the nonsense that is NOMA.

Jerry Coyne’s recent article is quite apt:

Also, just for the delight in seeing him perform again, here is a short clip of Christopher Hitchens talking about the incompatibility of religion with reason.

The enemy of your enemy

Razib Khan’s thoughts on the Islamic states in the Middle East and their fundamental failings in modernity and morality. He also expresses the dangers of partnering with various states and groups.

I am not a fan of allying with an enemy of your enemy. We can be better than that.

Victor Stenger – January 29, 1935 – August 27, 2014

Sad news of the death of Victor Stenger.

He was a big influence on me, particularly with respect to clarifying that science is a methodology of explaining observations, an explanation of reality through analysis of evidence, and that this encompasses all phenomena whatever their classification, be they so-called “supernatural” phenomena or other. In order words, the concept of “non overlapping magistaria” is a pile of crock.

Stenger’s book “God: The Failed Hypothesis” is one of those books that everyone should. A real classic.

Gapminder- a brilliant world statistics resource

I recently came across Hans Rosling’s Gapminder. This site has some of the best statistics, videos and other resources that provide realistic representations of global population growth, life expectancy, health, wealth, etc. In the last couple of days it has certainly displaced quite a few myths that I was harbouring. Gapminder has also reinforced my optimism for our future. Certainly challenges remain, but we are an adaptable and intelligent species.

This is a good Gapminder video to get you started!

Gapminder is at

Brunei, this is just silly!

Are they serious? According to the Brunei Times, the Brunei legal system states that it is “an offence to propagate religions other than Islam to a Muslim or atheist”. And this bit:

Additionally, it is a crime to expose the child to any ceremony, act of worship or religious activity of any religion beside Islam, or to participate in any activity held for the benefit of other religions.

Go read the rest at the Brunei Times!