Archive for the ‘Growth of Knowledge’ Category

Forgiveness and Compassion

Forgiveness and Compassion“Holding onto anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.” – Not Buddha

Despite my imperative to discover forgiveness and compassion by any means possible, I was reluctant to use this quote — simply because it is so abused by spiritual novitiates and pseudoscientists. It is most frequently attributed to Gautama Buddha, but I suspected the ascription might be incorrect, so I did a little digging. And I’m glad I did. Read On…

Cynics Are Missing the Bitcoin Boat

Cynics Are Missing the Bitcoin BoatThe first Bitcoin crash happened in 2011. In this dramatic, optimistic surge, the cryptocurrency quickly rose to about $28 — and just as quickly fell to about $3. The gloomy naysayers, defeatists, and misanthropes came out of the woodwork — boldly asserting that cryptocurrencies were finished. And yet, through it all, Bitcoin has been remarkably resilient; for every “collapse,” it has rebounded vigorously — making new highs. Likewise, with each new surge, the pessimists have become ever more angry and critical. This despondent, dogmatic hatred is disappointing, because in reality, the cynics are missing the Bitcoin boat. Read On…

The Dangers of Militant Atheism

The Danger of Militant AtheismI am a loyal fan of Richard Dawkins. As a Darwinian evolutionary biologist, his ideas are foremost among contemporary scholars in the discipline. In his 1976 masterpiece The Selfish Gene, he coined the word meme — which he used to represent the evolutionary spread of ideas and knowledge. Since then, the concept of the meme has gained universal adoption as a construct in human language and thought. Dawkins’ contributions to the growth of knowledge are immeasurable.

Dawkins also describes himself as an atheist, and can often be found debating and discussing in the company of other superb theological critics like Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, Dan Dennett, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali (a quick YouTube search show how viral Dawkins’s work has become). Yet as much as I admire Dr. Dawkins (and I have for over two decades), I am somewhat put off by his approach to the criticism of toxic religious ideas. To me, he squarely embodies the dangers of militant atheism. Read On…

The Disease of Dogmatism

The Disease of DogmatismRarely have I struggled the way I do when I am confronted by the disease of dogmatism. It is, I believe, the greatest impediment to the growth of human knowledge — and to the betterment of mankind. It is a conundrum that has become less complicated over the centuries, but the continued slow rate of its exodus from our collective ethos troubles me deeply. Read On…

Why Is the Government Impeding Same-sex Marriage?

government impeding same-sex marriageIn 1967, the United States Supreme Court unanimously struck down a Virginia law that had been in place for 43 years, prohibiting people from different races from marrying one another. At stake was the freedom of an interracial couple who had each been sentenced to one year in prison for breaking the Virginia statute — categorized as “mixing of the races,” or miscegenation. Fast forward almost five decades, and we find ourselves battling yet another form of prejudicial ignorance, and forcing ourselves to ask the question: why is the government impeding same-sex marriage? Read On…

Approaching Certainty

Approaching CertaintyIf I had to point to the single most problematic weakness in human beings, it would be the dogmatism and arrogant certitude that leads us to entrench. Individually and collectively, we become so confident in our beliefs that we will sacrifice everything in order to defend “being right.” Families disintegrate. Wars take millions of lives. Still we persist: we arrogantly proclaim that dissent is poisonous and must be punished. And yet, even the most perspicacious human being would have to consider himself fortunate even to be approaching certainty. Read On…

Humanity Needs Easy Mathematical Communication

Humanity Needs Easy Mathematical CommunicationI watched a documentary about Stephen Hawking recently, and one of the most striking things about this amazing man is the fact that for decades, he has only been able to communicate at four words per minute. As I watched his story, I began to think about the history of written communication. And just as quickly, I began to think about how difficult it must be for someone like Stephen Hawking to impart formulas in a computational context. It occurred to me how much humanity needs easy mathematical communication. Read On…

The Information Age and the End of the United States of America

The Information Age and the End of the United States of AmericaYou are losing your rights.

You probably don’t believe it… you’ve heard it all before. And yet everything has turned out okay, hasn’t it? And this time it will be the same… as long as “okay” means a failing currency, hyperinflation, a systematic destruction of the middle class, and the end of the United States’ role as the world’s preeminent financial power — and, indeed, its role as a sovereign nation. And yet, like it or not, we are facing the end of the United States of America.

Read On…