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Atheists, Agnostics, Skeptics, Freethinkers, Secular Humanists and the Non-Religious

This group is named for the discussion group on (founded by Peter Kroll) which shows that critical thinkers can (and do) act compassionately, without the need for magical sanction.

The idea for this room is to highlight the genius of the unwieldy name: a place to share and discuss content about issues of atheism/agnosticism/secular humanism from a truly skeptical and non-religious point of view.

It's difficult to label lack of belief (much like "not collecting stamps" doesn't work as a hobby). Names like "brights" are kind of lame, and neither "skeptic" nor "atheist" is comprehensive enough. Maybe AASFSHNR will catch on?
Karl reMarks: Obama Outlines His Vision for a Likeable, Watered-Down Version of Islam -
Karl reMarks: Obama Outlines His Vision for a Likeable, Watered-Down Version of Islam
"Following his recent statements about the US being 'at war with those perverting Islam', American president Barack Obama has now expounded his vision for ‘a likeable, watered-down version of Islam’ that is sure to get the approval of a large number of non-Muslims. In an exclusive interview with our blog through which Obama wanted to reach out to a wide audience of ‘not too Islamic folks’, the president outlined his ideas for a ‘cooler, lighter Islam’, in a bid to galvanise support against the Islamic State." - Eivind from Bookmarklet
"While admitting that he is not an expert in Islamic theology, Obama explained that a lot could be learned from the experience of liberal Christians and Jews which illustrates that a more metaphorical interpretation of religious texts can help reconcile the differences between religious dogma and modern sensibilities. For example if the Bible says homosexuality is a sin, the... more... - Eivind
Jayarava's Raves: The Very Idea of Buddhist History -
Jayarava's Raves: The Very Idea of Buddhist History
"Readers may know that there is a split in Buddhist studies. On one side are religious traditionalists and mainly British scholars (particularly Richard Gombrich and Wynne at Oxford) who see the early Buddhist texts as a more or less accurate account of Buddhist history. On the other side are religious sceptics (yours truly) and mainly American scholars (particularly Greg Schopen and Don Lopez) who don't think there is anything authentically historical in the suttas." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"We know this: there is a body of literature we associate with early Buddhism and the early phase of sectarian Buddhism. This literature is preserved, in a language we now call Pali, in major collections of manuscripts in Sri Lanka, Burma and Thailand, with minor collections in Laos, Vietnam and perhaps other places. Substantial parts of several other recensions are preserved in... more... - Maitani
Vaccines Work. Here Are the Facts. — The Nib — Medium -
Vaccines Work. Here Are the Facts. — The Nib — Medium
Vaccines Work. Here Are the Facts. — The Nib — Medium
Vaccines Work. Here Are the Facts. — The Nib — Medium
The varieties of denialism | Scientia Salon -
The varieties of denialism | Scientia Salon
"I have just come back from a stimulating conference at Clark University about “Manufacturing Denial,” which brought together scholars from wildly divergent disciplines — from genocide studies to political science to philosophy — to explore the idea that “denialism” may be a sufficiently coherent phenomenon underlying the willful disregard of factual evidence by ideologically motivated groups or individuals. [...] the Oxford defines a denialist as “a person who refuses to admit the truth of a concept or proposition that is supported by the majority of scientific or historical evidence,” which represents a whole different level of cognitive bias or rationalization. Think of it as bias on steroids." - Eivind from Bookmarklet
"The first two things that became clear during our discussions of denialism are particularly disturbing to me as a scientist and philosopher. First, as a scientist: it’s just not about the facts, indeed — as Brendan showed data in hand during his presentation — insisting on facts may have counterproductive effects, leading the denialist to double down on his belief. [...] As a... more... - Eivind
"Another important issue to understand is that denialists exploit the inherently tentative nature of scientific or historical findings to seek refuge for their doctrines. Even though there is an overwhelming consensus about climate change within the relevant community of experts (i.e., climate scientists, not meteorologists, medical doctors, or a random assemblage of people with PhD’s),... more... - Eivind
God doesn't kill people, people with gods kill people
Karl reMarks: Fascinating Observations of Life in the West by an Iraqi Anthropologist -
Karl reMarks: Fascinating Observations of Life in the West by an Iraqi Anthropologist
Karl reMarks: Fascinating Observations of Life in the West by an Iraqi Anthropologist
Show all
"Religion in the Western world appears to be primarily pre-Monotheistic, dominated by nature-worship and pagan idols. Healers, druids, shamans and soothsayers are quite common in the Western world and many of them can make a living without having to take a second job in waitering or admin. Western people are generally inclined towards nudity, except for the 'English' who have a developed sense of bodily shame." - Eivind from Bookmarklet
"Although it's not medical science by our modern definitions, Western people have quite a sophisticated system of healing that involves a mixture of primitive healing techniques and herbs with more modern forms of medicine. Western people seem to make a distinction between 'chemicals' and 'non-chemical' elements which are seen as more natural. This naive distinction although not... more... - Eivind
"Much like body piercings, tattoos are also important symbols of social status and tribal affiliation in Western culture. They can often be used as a form of religious expression, and are the primary mode of the social expression of individual identity in the Western world. People who don't have tattoos are assumed not have any identity." - Eivind
:) - Eivind from Bookmarklet
rinse and repeat... - Ken Morley
Do You Believe in Atheists? Distrust Is Central to Anti-Atheist Prejudice -
"Recent polls indicate that atheists are among the least liked people in areas with religious majorities (i.e., in most of the world). The sociofunctional approach to prejudice, combined with a cultural evolutionary theory of religion’s effects on cooperation, suggest that anti-atheist prejudice is particularly motivated by distrust. Consistent with this theoretical framework, a broad sample of American adults revealed that distrust characterized anti-atheist prejudice but not anti-gay prejudice (Study 1). In subsequent studies, distrust of atheists generalized even to participants from more liberal, secular populations. A description of a criminally untrustworthy individual was seen as comparably representative of atheists and rapists but not representative of Christians, Muslims, Jewish people, feminists, or homosexuals (Studies 2–4). In addition, results were consistent with the hypothesis that the relationship between belief in God and atheist distrust was fully mediated by the... more... - Eivind
Study 4 is interesting considering that many atheists are practicing secular humanism. Don't worry, love. I still trust you. ;) - Jenny H. from Android
That's good to hear, boo. And hopefully people will stop thinking we need supernatural surveillance to behave once natural surveillance reaches full coverage. :-P :/ :( - Eivind
It's the Theist's I worry about. As far as natural surveillance goes what if it's all been done before. Pascal's wagerist for me :) - Eric Logan
I'd be interested in comparing trust perceptions of atheists against trust perceptions of evangelicals. In my experience the antipathy expressed towards atheists is pretty much limited to those who express their disbelief aggressively in modes more commonly associated with evangelical communities. ETA: Unless the inclusion of feminists and homosexuals in this study was intended to net the same data? Both sub groups have historically had highly militant and confrontational wings. Hmm. - Soup in a TARDIS
The study focused on two sources of antipathy, Soup; distrust and disgust. "Atheist" in all studies was defined as "no belief in any god." It's interesting that you immediately thought of "atheist" as opposed to evangelical, though. If the majority of people in the study had done so, I suspect the "disgust" metric would have been more dominant. - Eivind from Android
That seems to be in keeping with other studies I've seen, and what I've witnessed personally (low grade antipathy, outright suspicion, friends shunning someone, people asking whether atheists should have mandatory background checks, etc.) - Jennifer Dittrich
Whaaa? Mandatory background checks for atheists? Why?! - Soup in a TARDIS
Their argument was that atheists are inherently shifty (which given prison statistics on religious preference, or lack thereof, isn't really supported well.) I just sort of stared at them until they petered out. Honestly, the shunning was harder to deal with because it involved people I'd considered friends up until that point. - Jennifer Dittrich
I think like a lot of prejudices, this sort of attitude lurks under the surface unless it's directly invoked. Many of the people I've heard say these things I would not have predicted before they decided to just wave that in public, and it made me wonder how that influenced their jobs and other interactions afterwards. - Jennifer Dittrich
That's very....strange. I can see getting annoyed with someone who needs to constantly tell you about their atheist beliefs at every opportunity (including instances that aren't actual opportunities but they're wedging the topic in anyhow), but questioning their ethics or morals? Because they don't believe in a god? How are those two things even related? We form our beliefs, norms,... more... - Soup in a TARDIS
Here's my personal experience: I honestly feel I've never experienced anything significant at all in terms of anti-atheist prejudice directed against me. (It helps that I live in an area where other atheists are not uncommon.) I've met plenty of racists, plenty of bigots, plenty of homophobes, plenty of anti-Semites. Sure, we do have some ways to go as a society in terms of how we treat... more... - Stephen Mack
I have met plenty of prejudice on a personal level (mostly from incomprehension or bafflement, never in the form of malice) traveling the world, Stephen, but nothing on a societal level in Norway, as the article predicts under the "Generalizability" headline: "Although we only collected data in North America, our theoretical framework and the present data allow us to make detailed... more... - Eivind
The world and belief systems in general are strange indeed. This today. ICYMI India’s water minister says atheists cause floods. - Eric Logan from FFHound!
When I was in high school I heard my dad say that atheists have no source of morals. A lot of people think that way, and those people scare me. If they're morals are based on what God thinks, can't they just repent after doing something wrong? (My dad's not like that anymore.) - Heather
Many of my best friends are gay, atheist, agnostic, and/or humanist. I must be doing this Christianity thing wrong. :^) - Friar Will
Yes, the /Bible believin'/ Christians are very disappointed in you :-P - Eivind from Android
up - Amir
By denouncing ISIS as ‘not Muslims’, moderate Muslims risk making things worse | Left Foot Forward -
By denouncing ISIS as ‘not Muslims’, moderate Muslims risk making things worse | Left Foot Forward
"Just as non-Muslims who try to tackle Islamism through defining moderate interpretations of Islam as the sole ‘true Islam’ actually undermine liberal Muslim attempts to develop a pluralist understanding of religion, so moderate Muslims’ use of takfir – the process of denouncing rival Muslims as apostates or non-Muslims – reinforces the ideological underpinnings of the very movements they are seeking to tackle. Takfirism is the root and enabler of all modern jihadism; takfirist doctrine enables any ‘true’ Muslim to label those with a rival interpretation of Islam as no longer Muslim. This, combined with traditional Islamic jurisprudence that mandates death for apostates, is taken by jihadists as an open license to denounce and then kill their enemies. When moderate Muslim groups use takfirism to tackle extremism, this dangerous and intrinsically intolerant doctrine is therefore not challenged but is instead reaffirmed. Illustrating this, one British fighter in Syria, explaining why he... more... - Eivind from Bookmarklet
A Mauritanian Abolitionist’s Crusade Against Slavery -
A Mauritanian Abolitionist’s Crusade Against Slavery
"In 1981, Mauritania became the last country in the world to abolish slavery, while making no provision for punishing slave owners. In 2007, under international pressure, it passed a law that allowed slaveholders to be prosecuted. Yet slavery persists there, even as the government and religious leaders deny it. Although definitive numbers are difficult to find, the Global Slavery Index estimates that at least a hundred and forty thousand people are enslaved in Mauritania, out of a population of 3.8 million. Bruce Hall, a professor of African history at Duke University, said that people endure slavelike conditions in other countries in the region, but that the problem in Mauritania is unusually severe: “Some proximate form of slavery has continued to be a foundation of the social structure and the division of labor within households, so there are many more people who are willing to support it as an institution.” While Abeid was travelling, a well-known imam had given a televised... more... - Eivind from Bookmarklet
"In the course of centuries, Berbers and Arabs came to inhabit the region, and they took black African slaves. Over time, the bloodlines of the masters and the slaves intermixed and they came to share a language and cultural practices; as the masters imposed their traditions, the slaves lost their own. These days in Mauritania, people speak of the mingled Arab-Berbers as Beydanes and... more... - Eivind
"Mauritanian slaves are not restrained by chains; slavery is in large measure an economic and a psychological institution. Slaves are denied secular education, and religion permeates the culture. Because Islam is perceived as endorsing slave ownership, questioning slavery is tantamount to questioning Islam. When slaves are told that servitude in this life brings reward in the next one,... more... - Eivind
Graham Priest on Buddhism and logic by Massimo Pigliucci -
Graham Priest on Buddhism and logic by Massimo Pigliucci
"Graham Priest is a colleague of mine at City University of New York’s Graduate Center, a world renowned expert in logic, a Buddhist connoisseur, and an all-around nice guy [1]. So I always pay attention to what he says or writes. Recently he published a piece in Aeon magazine [2] entitled “Beyond true and false: Buddhist philosophy is full of contradictions. Now modern logic is learning why that might be a good thing.” I approached it with trepidation, for a variety of reasons. To begin with, I am weary of attempts at reading things into Buddhism or other Asian traditions of thought that are clearly not there (the most egregious example being the “documentary” What The Bleep Do We Know?, and the most frustrating one the infamous The Tao of Physics, by Fritjof Capra). But I quickly reassured myself because I knew Graham would do better than that." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"I took part on Saturday in a panel discussion at the World Humanist Congress in Oxford on ‘Is there something about Islam?’ which debated whether ‘there is anything distinctive about Islam’ that leads to violence, bigotry and the suppression of freedom. Other panellists were Alom Shaha, Maajid Nawaz and Maryam Namazie. This is a transcript of my introductory comments." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"Every year I give a lecture to a group of theology students – would-be Anglican priests, as it happens – on ‘Why I am an atheist’. Part of the talk is about values. And every year I get the same response: that without God, one can simply pick and choose about which values one accepts and which one doesn’t." - Maitani
"My response is to say: ‘Yes, that’s true. But it is true also of believers.’ I point out to my students that in the Bible, Leviticus sanctifies slavery. It tells us that adulterers ‘shall be put to death’. According to Exodus, ‘thou shalt not suffer a witch to live’. And so on. Few modern day Christians would accept norms. Others they would. In other words, they pick and choose." - Maitani
A very good piece. - Eivind
And it is on such an important issue. I want to ask everyone of my acquaintances who are self-appointed critics of Islam and Quran to read it. Islamophobia is strong in Germany. - Maitani
What Would Krishna Do? Or Shiva? Or Vishnu? - -
"This is the ninth in a series of interviews about religion that I am conducting for The Stone. The interviewee for this installment is Jonardon Ganeri, currently a visiting professor of philosophy at New York University Abu Dhabi and the author of “The Lost Age of Reason: Philosophy in Early Modern India 1450–1700.”" - Maitani from Bookmarklet
I’m raising my kids atheist in a God-obsessed culture: How I learned to parent godless children
April Russo
I guess their "magic water" forgot how to cure this shit. :D
The Barefoot Bum: Does epistemology matter? -
The Barefoot Bum: Does epistemology matter?
"A number of articles recently assert that the epistemology of religion doesn't matter; what matters are the practices. (The latest of course, being Religion, Heuristics, and Intergenerational Risk Management, with my response.) And it is asserted that epistemology doesn't matter in a deep way: even if we know that the underlying structure of a set of practices is false, even in the "worst" sense of falsity, that doesn't matter. I find this position deeply problematic." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
Faces of Vaccine Denialism
Faces of Vaccine Denialism.jpg
İnkarcılığa rahatsız gerçeği ile ilgili önlemek için bir yol olarak gerçeği inkar seçmektir. - Eivind
I'm not an anti-vaxer, but my moderate distrust of flu shots is influenced by the fact that of the couple of people I know who regularly get them, one developed Guillain-Barré syndrome within a week of receiving the shot. The CDC says the correlation is negligible, but my personal study indicates it's closer to 50%. :) - Ken Morley
I think you just highlighted an important problem. Lots of "personal studies," often based on news items and dodgy sites, end up with numbers like that, or worse :) - Eivind from Android
Or maybe the CDC is lying to us. ;) - Ken Morley
Sure. More like Center for Mind Control, amirite? :) - Eivind from Android
You can definitely get Guillain-Barré from the flu shot, but it's like 1:1 million (EDIT: sorry, 1:100,000) , so I haven't seen any cases yet. - Victor Ganata
It took him about a year to mostly get back to normal. He never did regain his fine motor control completely. - Ken Morley
correlation does not imply causation. the flu shot isn't that likely to have caused it, no matter how awful his suffering. - Big Joe Silence
There was a statistically-significant increase in risk though, but that was the 1976 swine flu vaccine. We don't really know the mechanism. But, yeah, Guillain-Barré can certainly happen even if you aren't vaccinated. - Victor Ganata
I mean, you can get Guillain-Barré after getting the flu—it's probably the exact same mechanism—but who really knows? - Victor Ganata
It's possible my sample size was not large enough to be statistically significant (n=2). Your results may vary. :) - Ken Morley
I've gotten a flu shot twice, so I'm 100% sure it has no side effects. :) I also got the HPV vaccine with no side effects, so it's also 100% safe. - Heather
I'm pretty sure my n is somewhere between 1,000 to 10,000 by now, but it's definitely not powered enough to see Guillain-Barré. I'm just taking the CDC at its word. - Victor Ganata
at the risk of being classified as your friendly vaccine denialist... I suggest you read CDC and then search for official Finnish news on Pandemrix effect, ie. gooogle for _pandemrix finland site:yle.fi_ - A. T.
first GSK simply denied effect goes above (their) statistic expectations, then they denied scale of effect, then they denied that most vulnerable between 4 and 19... then they denied those who "reported too late"... and then they used Finnish state as last-line "insurance" for damage over their 30 million EUR fund (in 2011 official number had been 92, but official confirmation of link had been in 2012 only). - A. T.
Of course the Dalai Lama's a Marxist | Ed Halliwell | Comment is free | (via -
Of course the Dalai Lama's a Marxist | Ed Halliwell | Comment is free | (via
"Perhaps because Buddhism came to the west on a wave of post-war hippy soul-searching, and was then co-opted as friendly religion of choice by new ageism and the self-help movement, its radical economic and social messages have been lost under an avalanche of laughing fat-man statues, healing crystals and copies of The Secret." - Eivind from Bookmarklet
You can't be a Marxist if you don't believe class struggle is the key. That's the whole point. - Todd Hoff
When you're the 14th iteration of the Lama di tutti Lami, you can be anything you damn well please :) - Eivind
If you thought that then you wouldn't be worthy. - Todd Hoff
True. But they probably won't even let me try to pick up the right items when this iteration's done anyway. - Eivind
btw: Marxism - Political Ideology - Marxism is a worldview and method of societal analysis that focuses on class relations and societal conflict, that uses a materialist interpretation of historical development, and a dialectical view of social transformation. - A. T.
"As university students today well know, power-point obsessed lecturers have internalized the idea, drawn from evolutionary biology, that the primary mode of perception for primates is vision. As university students today also well know, this modern pedagogical axiom can suck the life right out of a room. Back in ancient times, or in the 1980s when I first attended university, only the dullest of lecturers required anything so fancy as plastic slides on an overhead projector. Everything was oral, chalkboards were sufficient, and it was wonderful. Or at least I thought it was, the occasional droning aside. My how things have changed. Today it would be unthinkable to deliver a lecture without the aid or crutch of power-point. If the slides are especially busy, students need pay no mind to the babbling person, or reader, who advances them." - Maitani
"Those who study traditional cultures in general and hunter-gatherers in particular are no doubt aware of these issues, but awareness and understanding are two different things. I’ve been groping toward some understanding, inspired in this task initially by Jack Goody’s Domestication of the Savage Mind (1977). While Goody’s classic opened my eyes to these issues, my ears were not opened... more... - Maitani
Walter J. Ong, Orality and Literacy - Maitani
Note to David Brat: Free Markets Are Not Calvinist | Religion Dispatches -
"The confusion may go back even farther than Max Weber’s “Protestant ethic” thesis, all the way to the 16th century, when the Protestant reformer John Calvin waxed poetic in his Institutes of the Christian Religion about the importance of “freedom” in a Christian’s life. A Christian is no longer a slave to the law—neither the Torah nor the laws of the Roman Church. The Christian is free from condemnation, free to obey God joyfully, and free to make individual choices about earthly matters—even including usury (lending money at interest). So thus far it may seem that Calvin put his stamp of approval on the market free-for-all that’s so popular with bankers, business owners, financiers, and Brat voters." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"But this is nothing like John Calvin’s own thinking. Despite his love of freedom, Calvin also had what we might call “Talibanesque” tendencies, since he believed in the sovereignty of God and the total depravity of humankind; humans are so sinful that even believers get it wrong most of the time and thus need strict rules to save them from themselves and others. In particular, Calvin worried about how the rich and powerful would use their privileged positions to exploit the poor and vulnerable." - Maitani
You shouldn't read Calvin's texts literally. If you just read between the lines and interpret the stuff that is meant to be interpreted rather than just taken at face value and disregard the stuff that absolutely doesn't fit this ideology, you'll find that Calvin was, indeed, a right-wing, free-market wingnut libertarian. - Eivind
I haven't read Calvin yet, but I have no doubt about that, Eivind. I wonder who else we could monopolize as free market libertarians with this approach. :-) - Maitani
Nelson "Laissez-faire" Mandela would be a respectable addition :) - Eivind from Android
April Russo
Sunday creationists
April Russo
Man Sees the Apocalypse in Miracle Whip Commercial -
""The Third Eagle of the Apocalypse" is a batshit crazy man who considers himself a prophet ordained by Jeebus. The guy is obviously off his rocker, but sometimes his videos are amusing in the same way monkeys throwing shit makes kids giggle at the zoo. This time, however, the "Co-Prophet of the End Times" has outdone himself. (As a side note, I've always wondered if his nickname comes from those bumper stickers that say "Jesus is my co-pilot.") What could possibly have our protagonist up in arms this time? A Miracle Whip commercial that obviously is an allegory for Satan, the anti-Christ, and the fall of the church. Because Jeebus. All you have to do is count the number of deviled eggs the woman makes, divide by two, subtract a dozen, turn it into a fraction and then turn that into the Devil's phone number. Don't forget, the woman's name almost spells Satan if you rearrange the letters and drop a few plus she "looks like a transvestite" witch. Oh, yeah. It just keeps getting better the longer you watch." - April Russo from Bookmarklet
Pure comedic gold! - April Russo
"There are two aspects to what we call the death of God. The first is the decline of religious belief. The second is the growth of a new kind of faith – faith in the capacity of humans to act without guidance from beyond. What I want to suggest is that the decline of religious belief has been overplayed. But faith in human capacities has been undervalued. We have been so obsessed by idea of the decline of religious belief that we have almost ignored the significance of faith in human capacities – and the decline of that faith in the post-Enlightenment world." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
Slenderman & Christian Credulity | Genealogy of Religion -
Slenderman & Christian Credulity | Genealogy of Religion
"When the Chicago Tribune claimed that “our culture” was to blame for these girls’ inability to distinguish between “fantasy and reality,” it got things only partially right. The Tribune should have said: “our Christian culture.” It is a culture in which the majority of people believe that God, Satan, angels, and demons actually exist. America is a spirit-filled place, where invisible agents run rampant, making it difficult even for adults to distinguish between fantasy and reality. How, in this fantastic milieu, can we hold these 12 year old girls to a different standard (or call them “deluded” and “mentally ill”) for believing in Slenderman?" - Eivind from Bookmarklet
Why Superstition Works: The Science of Superstition in Sports and Life -
Why Superstition Works: The Science of Superstition in Sports and Life
"In the South Pacific there is a place so remote that few people have ever heard of it, let alone seen it: the Trobriand Islands. The Trobriands are located off the east coast of Papua New Guinea, and no white man had set foot there until the late 1700s. During World War I, however, the islands were visited by a man who would one day become a legend in the field of anthropology, Bronislaw Malinowski. Malinowski was a stork of a man—thin, pale, and balding—often seen wearing a pith helmet and socks up to his knees. He had terrible eyesight, was a hypochondriac, an insomniac, and on top of it all had a strong fear of the tropics—in particular, an abhorrence of the heat and the sultriness; to cope, he gave himself injections of arsenic." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"Malinowski was, nonetheless, a keen observer of humankind. And as he watched the Trobriand Islanders go about their lives, he noticed something odd. When the islanders went fishing their behavior changed, depending on where they fished. When they fished close to shore—where the waters were calm, the fishing was consistent, and the risk of disaster was low—superstitious behavior among them was nearly nonexistent." - Maitani
I wonder if everyone avoided shaking Moises Alou's hand on game days. ;-p - rönin
BBC News - Invented tradition and the religion of the ancients -
BBC News - Invented tradition and the religion of the ancients
"There in the fading evening light six priests standing on plinths on the riverbank were surrounded by thousands of people sitting on ancient stone steps that led down to the water. The priests - some with long hair tied back - were dressed in white robes from head to toe. They started by blowing into some conch shells, creating a low timeless sound and then came the bells and the incense swirling through the air. As the rhythmic chanting lulled the spectators into a state of spiritual relaxation, attendants produced lamps, each one with a thousand candles. On the Ganges itself some candles in small bowls were launched on the calm, wide waters - they floated into distance, diminishing specks of light." - Maitani from Bookmarklet
"And then to my side there appeared a convoy of wooden boats - a long procession meandering up the Ganges. All eyes turned to them and on board there were children dressed as gods, their smiling, proud faces frames in swirls of gold and red braid." - Maitani
"..."Ah yes," he replied. "The invention of tradition. Happens everywhere."" - Maitani
Ken Morley
How the Internet Is Taking Away America’s Religion | MIT Technology Review -
How the Internet Is Taking Away America’s Religion | MIT Technology Review
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