Heaven

SkepSun #90 (05_11_2014)

On Freethought Radio, Dan Barker and Annie Laurie Gaylor discuss the Supreme Court’s lamentable expansion of government prayer in the Greece, NY vs. Galloway case that was handed down this past week, FFRF’s Out-Of-The-Closet billboards in northeast Ohio and they talk with atheist Leighann Lord, whose been called “one of New York’s 10 hottest comics.” Then: do near death experiences (NDEs) provide compelling evidence for some kind of life after death, or are there more plausible, naturalistic explanations? After Freethought Radio I’ll play an Intelligence Squared debate that took place last week in New York City. These are a series of Oxford-style formal debates held around the world, often with high-profile participants. Four people, two on each side of a resolution. Seven-minute opening statements, a round-table discussion, then two-minute closing statements. The resolution of this debate is, simply, “Death Is Not Final,” and it’s affirmed by Eben Alexander, a neurosurgeon who had a NDE and now claims to have proof of the existence of Heaven, and Raymond Moody a psychiatrist who has written books about NDEs. Arguing against the resolution are two regulars of Skeptical Sunday, physicist Sean Carroll of CalTech and neurologist Steven Novella of Yale. The audience, polled before and after the debate on the resolution, gave the victory to Carroll & Novella, but decide for yourself which side makes a more convincing argument.

Here is a link to the entire debate.

Or is it?

Or is it?

Advertisements

SkepSun #44 (06_23_2013)

On Freethought Radio we hear the latest on the FFRF’s Florida school freethought literature distribution lawsuit.  Then, Annie Laurie and Dan discuss a bill signed into law in Texas this week by Governor Rick Perry, dubbed the “Merry Christmas bill” that encourages public schools in Texas to promote religious holidays. Afterwards they talk to Arizona State Representative Juan Mendez, who opened a session of the Arizona House of Representatives recently with a freethought invocation instead of a prayer, not to everybody’s liking. Next, from the Johann Hari podcast, we’ll hear British journalist Johann Hari’s review of Lisa Miller’s book, Heaven: Our Enduring Fascination with the Afterlife. Johann suggests that its high time we learn, as did the Mesopotamian hero Gilgamesh, to imagine “living for today” as John Lennon put it. Finally, a debate on Skeptical Sunday: are religion and science compatible?  In one corner, arguing in the affirmative is theologian John Haught of Georgetown University. In the other corner, arguing in the negative is Jerry Coyne, evolutionary biologist at the University of Chicago. You be the judge of who wins the belt. Your Comments are welcomed!

Heaven