Monthly Archives: January 2022

Religion and Transhumanism 

I have stated my opposition to religion many times on this blog. (My essay in Salon, “Religion’s Smart-People Problem,” generated much hate mail.) However, let me add that religion—while I believe it to be generally as harmful and untrue—is not the only cause of the world’s problems. Any fervently held ideology—social, political, moral, economic—that is immune to rational critique and the scientific method is inherently dangerous. Those who believe they possess the truth invariably want to force their beliefs on others. Continue reading Religion and Transhumanism 

5,000,000 views! Thank You

Hip, Hip, Hurrah! (1888) a painting portraying an artists’ party in 19th century Denmark

My blog passed 5,000,000 page views today, which translates to about 4,000,000 visitors. (A visitor reads on average 1.2 pages.) That’s 8 years’ worth of blogging and over 1,000 posts.  Now Google probably gets at least 5 million clicks per millisecond but, heck, I’m just an old philosopher trying to organize and share my thoughts.

Anyway, I want to thank my many readers for spending some of their precious time reading my musings. Also, a special shout-out to those who take the time to comment. I often learn a lot from others’ ideas.

Finally, I would especially like to thank my patrons who offset the cost of hosting the site. In fact, my costs for hosting, spam filter, etc are now covered. Yeah!  That strangers contribute to the site just fills me with ineffable joy and gratitude. Thank you so much.


Russell on the Fear of Thinking

Men fear thought as they fear nothing else on earth – more than ruin, more even than death. Thought is subversive and revolutionary, destructive and terrible; thought is merciless to privilege, established institutions, and comfortable habits; thought is anarchic and lawless, indifferent to authority, careless of the well-tried wisdom of the ages. Thought looks into the pit of hell and is not afraid. ~ Bertrand Russell (“Why Men Fight: A Method of Abolishing the International Duel,” pp. 178-179) Continue reading Russell on the Fear of Thinking

Do We Know Anything For Sure?

Rene Descartes

There are many reasons we might want to philosophize—to become better people, gain self-knowledge, understand the history of thought, etc. But I was drawn to philosophy because I wanted to know, as far as is possible, what was true. This sentiment echoes the first sentence of the first book we read in my very first college philosophy class, way back in 1973. Continue reading Do We Know Anything For Sure?