Michael Shermer’s Case for Scientific Naturalism 

Shermer’s piece, in which he is looking back on his years as a Scientific American columnist, feels like an elegy. The reality today is that, however people may universally seek freedom, China is dedicated to using the high tech born of science to stamp it out and enlisting many other natures to do

Source: Michael Shermer’s Case for Scientific Naturalism | Uncommon Descent

A definition of consciousness: “The intentional power of the mind” 

Neurosurgeon Michael Egnor offers this definition by way of explaining that there is one sense in which consciousness IS an illusion: We are not aware of our consciousness; only of its objects. I believe that the most satisfactory definition of consciousness is the intentional power of the mind 

Source: A definition of consciousness: “The intentional power of the mind” | Uncommon Descent

The Legacy of Darwinism

2.1 The Legacy of Darwinism

At a time when theories of evolution are under renewed controversy, discussion is hampered by the remoteness of the phenomenon of evolution, and the use of indirect inference to speculate about deep time. In the face of much criticism from religious Creationists, now accompanied by the Intelligent Design movement, adherents of Darwinism forever defend a flawed theory that has been challenged from its first appearance. The objections of the first reviewers of Darwin’s book, indeed even of T. H. Huxley, the original champion of the theory, were never quite answered in the tide of paradigm change that swept modern culture. The perennial issue is natural selection as the mechanism of evolution. The assumption that evolution occurs, and must occur, at random is the crux of the dispute, one unreasonably confused by the claims of religion versus science.i Continue reading The Legacy of Darwinism

Voyages of the Damned 

Last Sunday, I heard about a trip to the border to stand with the Central American refugees asking for asylum. As I walked across town to the Accompaniment Training for the Sanctuary Caravan, I told myself I was just curious. I wanted to support the project in some way but felt that, at 74, I was too old to fight the good fight this time. For one thing, my injured shoulder would make getting arrested really painful. And I would need a comfortable bed. I didn’t want to be an energy-drain on the group. 

Source: Voyages of the Damned | Portside