Re: the weak argument of atheism

  1. The default position that you must start from is that nothing exists. From there you add things to existence based on what you can verify the existence of. Once you have verified all you can, it is then natural to speculate as to what else may also exist to fit the patterns/trends you have observed. This is a very simplistic scientific method and even religion used to understand this.
  2. Religion was, after all, early science -- before we had the means to explain things like weather, stars, birth, and death, the best we could do is assume that it was the work of magical entities called gods, Alfar, Sidhe, faeries, Kami, daemons, spirits, et cetera. We have improved since then and we will continue to improve, no matter how much lags behind.
  3. It is extremely easy to make a claim that cannot be disproven. That is called unfalsifiability, and it weakens the validity of an argument or theory considerably. What needs to be done is to present a falsifiable theory and fail to falsify it. The Theory of Evolution is very falsifiable, but hasn't been falsified. That is why scientists discredit Creationism, not because of a vendetta.
  4. Agnosticism is not a middle-ground between theism and atheism. It is part of a separate spectrum. Everyone is either a gnostic theist, an agnostic theist, a gnostic atheist, or an agnostic atheist. For example, most Christians are agnostic theists: they do not claim to know their deity exists, they instead claim that they believe it exists. Likewise, most atheists are agnostic atheists.

'Upstreamism': Your zip code affects your health as much as genetics

Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."

Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
  • Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
  • Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
Keep reading Show less

Meet the Bajau sea nomads — they can reportedly hold their breath for 13 minutes

The Bajau people's nomadic lifestyle has given them remarkable adaptions, enabling them to stay underwater for unbelievable periods of time. Their lifestyle, however, is quickly disappearing.

Wikimedia Commons
Culture & Religion
  • The Bajau people travel in small flotillas throughout the Phillipines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, hunting fish underwater for food.
  • Over the years, practicing this lifestyle has given the Bajau unique adaptations to swimming underwater. Many find it straightforward to dive up to 13 minutes 200 feet below the surface of the ocean.
  • Unfortunately, many disparate factors are erasing the traditional Bajau way of life.
Keep reading Show less

Life is hard: Jordan Peterson and the nature of suffering

The Canadian professor's old-school message is why many started listening to him.

Jordan Peterson addresses students at The Cambridge Union on November 02, 2018 in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire. (Photo by Chris Williamson/Getty Images)
Personal Growth
  • The simplicity of Peterson's message on suffering echoes Buddha and Rabbi Hillel.
  • By bearing your suffering, you learn how to become a better person.
  • Our suffering is often the result of our own actions, so learn to pinpoint the reasons behind it.
Keep reading Show less

Scientists create a "lifelike" material that has metabolism and can self-reproduce

An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.

Shogo Hamada/Cornell University
Surprising Science
  • Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
  • The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
  • The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
Keep reading Show less