Quotes

August 8 2015

Some believers accuse skeptics of having nothing left but a dull, cold scientific world. I am left with only art, music, literature, theater, the magnificence of nature, mathematics, the human spirit, sex, the cosmos, friendship, history, science, imagination, dreams, oceans, mountains, love and the wonder of birth. That’ll do me.

Some believers accuse skeptics of having nothing left but a dull, cold scientific world. I am left with only art, music, literature, theater, the magnificence of nature, mathematics, the human spirit, sex, the cosmos, friendship, history, science, imagination, dreams, oceans, mountains, love and the wonder of birth. That'll do me.
Lynne Kelly
August 8 2015

One of the great tragedies of mankind is that morality has been hijacked by religion. So now people assume that religion and morality have a necessary connection. But the basis of morality is really very simple and doesn’t require religion at all. It’s this: ‘Don’t do unto anybody else what you wouldn’t like to be done to you.’ It seems to me that that’s all there is to it.

One of the great tragedies of mankind is that morality has been hijacked by religion. So now people assume that religion and morality have a necessary connection. But the basis of morality is really very simple and doesn't require religion at all. It's this: 'Don't do unto anybody else what you wouldn't like to be done to you.' It seems to me that that's all there is to it.
Arthur C. Clarke
August 8 2015

Anyone in the 21st century who rants about the earth being 6000 years old and unthinkingly accepts the scientific authority of an ancient book cobbled together by tribes of sheepherders really needs to be shuffled off to a rubber room.

Anyone in the 21st century who rants about the earth being 6000 years old and unthinkingly accepts the scientific authority of an ancient book cobbled together by tribes of sheepherders really needs to be shuffled off to a rubber room.
P.Z. Myers
August 8 2015

The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still purely primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this.

The word God is for me nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness, the Bible a collection of honorable, but still purely primitive, legends which are nevertheless pretty childish. No interpretation no matter how subtle can (for me) change this.
Albert Einstein
August 8 2015

There has to be an uncaused starting point to the universe, or it’s an exercise in infinite regression (which it may be; it’s as good a proposition as saying it had a beginning). But let’s just assume that there was something that popped into existence without a causal agent behind it. Now the question is, what was that first something? I think it’s perfectly fine to suggest it was a singularity, that first tiny pinpoint of incipient mass and energy. We gain nothing from saying the first cause was a ‘god’, which is an undefined and inconsistent being of significant complexity with human-like qualities of intelligence, who then by mechanism unknown initiates the singularity. It’s an unnecessary complication, especially when one of your reasons for bringing it into the equation is that you can’t comprehend how matter and energy came into being, so you’re going to invoke magic and push the problem back onto a superman.

There has to be an uncaused starting point to the universe, or it's an exercise in infinite regression (which it may be; it's as good a proposition as saying it had a beginning). But let's just assume that there was something that popped into existence without a causal agent behind it. Now the question is, what was that first something? I think it's perfectly fine to suggest it was a singularity, that first tiny pinpoint of incipient mass and energy. We gain nothing from saying the first cause was a 'god', which is an undefined and inconsistent being of significant complexity with human-like qualities of intelligence, who then by mechanism unknown initiates the singularity. It's an unnecessary complication, especially when one of your reasons for bringing it into the equation is that you can't comprehend how matter and energy came into being, so you're going to invoke magic and push the problem back onto a superman.
P.Z. Myers
August 8 2015

Long experience has taught me this about the status of mankind with regard to matters requiring thought: the less people know and understand about them, the more positively they attempt to argue concerning them, while on the other hand to know and understand a multitude of things renders men cautious in passing judgment upon anything new.

Long experience has taught me this about the status of mankind with regard to matters requiring thought: the less people know and understand about them, the more positively they attempt to argue concerning them, while on the other hand to know and understand a multitude of things renders men cautious in passing judgment upon anything new.
Galileo