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Posts Tagged "Religion & the Supernatural"

Anthropology in Practice

Editor’s Selections: Speaking In Tongues, Bi-Gendered Individuals, And The Prisoner’s Dilemma

Highlighted in my ResearchBlogging.org column this week: At Geneaology of Religion, Cris Campbell has a nice summary of dissociative speech patterns—in layman’s terms, that’s to say he breaks down different ways of “speaking in tongues.” The Neuroskeptic discusses a small, self-selected study on “bi-gendered” individuals which highlights the ways social pressures can color our identities. At NeuroDojo, Zen Faulkes [...]

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Anthropology in Practice

Editor’s Selections: Roman health, Anatomical offerings, and Mental illness

Part of my online life includes editorial duties at ResearchBlogging.org, where I serve as the Social Sciences Editor. Each Thursday, I pick notable posts on research in anthropology, philosophy, social science, and research to share on the ResearchBlogging.org News site. To help highlight this writing, I also share my selections here on AiP. This week: [...]

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Anthropology in Practice

Ashes, Yarmulkes and the Hijab: Communitas and Religious Symbols

Ed Note: As today is Ash Wednesday, it seemed an appropriate time to re-post this piece from the AiP archives. Today is Ash Wednesday, the start of the Lenten season for Western Christians—the 40 days (or 46 if you count weekends) leading up to Easter. Last year, I discussed the actions of a local homeless [...]

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Anthropology in Practice

Editor’s Selections: Snakes, Dangerous Honey, And Friendly Rats

Part of my online life includes editorial duties at ResearchBlogging.org, where I serve as the Social Sciences Editor. Each Thursday, I pick notable posts on research in anthropology, philosophy, social science, and research to share on the ResearchBlogging.org News site. To help highlight this writing, I also share my selections here on AiP Great reads this week! [...]

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Cross-Check

Did Edgar Allan Poe Foresee Modern Physics and Cosmology?

Poe presented an ambitious theory of everything—which seems to anticipate certain modern scientific ideas--in Eureka, a book-length work that he write just before he died.

I’ve always been an Edgar Allan Poe fan, so much so that I even watched the horrifying—not in a good way–2012 film The Raven. But when I spotted an essay on Poe by novelist Marilynne Robinson in the February 5 New York Review of Books, I hesitated to read it, thinking, What more can I [...]

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Cross-Check

How an Agnostic Science Writer Celebrates Winter Solstice

Sitting in a circle of stones on Winter Solstice can help us intuit what science also tells us, that life is infinitely improbable.

Winter Solstice, darkest day of the year, is fast approaching. So once again I’m posting an edited version of a column I originally wrote for The New York Times more than a decade ago, when I was still married and living in a Hudson Valley hamlet. –John Horgan My wife recently decided that our family [...]

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Cross-Check

Be wary of the righteous rationalist: We should reject Sam Harris’s claim that science can be a moral guidepost

Say what you will about Sam Harris, the man’s got guts. In The End of Faith (W. W. Norton, 2005) and Letter to a Christian Nation (Knopf, 2006), Harris, a neuroscientist, rejects the notion that science and religion can coexist. We can’t believe in science, Harris says, and still believe in supernatural beings that part [...]

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Cross-Check

If religion is a side effect of sex, does that mean God doesn’t exist?

sculpture The Ecstasy of Saint Theresa by Gianlorenzo Bernini

In a post on Asperger’s syndrome, my fellow blogger Karen Schrock manages to knock both religious believers and nonreligious rationalists in just a few paragraphs. Kudos, Karen! People with Asperger’s, a mild form of autism, tend not to attribute events in their lives to a "higher power or supernatural force," Karen reports. Conversely, the tendency [...]

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Food Matters

Breaking Food Down

Original Image U. Huddersfield.

What is food? The Merriam-Webster Dictionary entry says “Something that nourishes, sustains, or supplies.” How beautiful. That statement captures much of the emotion and feeling surrounding food, yet it’s only part of the full definition. So where does food begin? As with most big questions, it depends who you ask. Let’s start down the reductive [...]

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Guest Blog

Fight at the Museum: Confronting Visitor Biases

The Field Museum in Chicago. (Ancheta Wis/Wikimedia Commons)

Midway through the school year, parents and teachers are starting to plan (and fundraise) for winter and spring field trips. Among the most popular destinations is the science museum. The Association of Science-Technology Centers estimates that 12.1 million children in the United States visited science museums as part of a school group in 2013, accounting [...]

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Observations

Smartphone App Takes Morality Science out of the Lab and into the Real World

Image of the Smartphone Experience-Sampling Signal (SMS linking to smartphone survey). Courtesy of Wilhelm Hofmann.

Just when it seems there’s a mobile app for just about everything, psychologists have shown there’s room for one more: they are using smartphones to help them better understand the dynamics of moral and immoral behavior out in the community. A team of U.S., German and Dutch researchers has used Apple iOS, Google Android and [...]

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Observations

Scientific American–Then and Now

Excerpt from the first issue of Scientific American

Thoughts on the first issue of Scientific American, from 1845, now available online. Nature Publishing Group (which publishes Scientific American) announced today that it has now digitized all of Scientific American’s archive, going back to Volume 1, Issue 1 from 1845. I decided to take a look at the first issue, which was targeted to [...]

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Observations

Evolutionary psycho-logy: Commandeering genetics to explain why Obama really is a Muslim

Okay, here’s one for the annals, something that is going to make it even more difficult for evolutionary psychology to get the respect the field thinks it deserves. A controversial academic from the London School of Economics has recently penned a blog post for Psychology Today called "If Barack Obama Is Christian, Michael Jackson Was [...]

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PsySociety

Atonement, Forgiveness, And Our Most Fundamental Error.

goodintentions

Today is the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur. Although it is often called the “holiest day of the Jewish year,” what is notable about Yom Kippur is not the fact that it is particularly holy, nor is it the fact that many Jews you know might be particularly hungry today. Yom Kippur is notable because [...]

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PsySociety

Fighting Fair: How To Tackle Crucial Conversations On Facebook & Twitter

ArguingPeople

When’s the last time you had an online fight?       Unfortunately, most of us probably won’t have to try particularly hard to recall the last time that this happened.  In a recent survey, 76 percent of almost 2,700 respondents indicated that they have witnessed an argument over social media, 88 percent of respondents [...]

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Streams of Consciousness

Can Atheists Be Happy? And Other Answers from Scientific American MIND

Pretty young woman

The May/June issue of Scientific American Mind makes its online debut today. As usual, it contains an array of delicacies to sate your curiosity about people. Here are three mouth-watering morsels of brain food from its pages. Knowing Ourselves. How we see ourselves—physically, that is–can play a significant role in our lives. Our body image [...]

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