BBC News – Human-like fossil find is breakthrough of the year


The discovery of a fossilised skeleton that has become a "central character in the story of human evolution" has been named the science breakthrough of 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8419487.stm

Evolution Fish to Man. Man’s Debt To The Past. The Fishes Invade The Land. http://luckyme0.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!A18BF3FCC5E126A2!960.entry

Illusion: "A system of symbols which acts to establish powerful, pervasive and long-lasting moods and motivations in men by formulating concepts of a general order of existence and clothing these concepts with such an aura of factuality that the moods and motivations seem uniquely realistic" Clifford Geertz http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clifford_Geertz (‘suspends your disbelief in a religion-like way’)

Ending of 2009 – a fairly chilly feeling, seeming to persist, running, ever so, and very slowly, up ones spine! (‘Knowledge Based Culture’ – only 4 to 5 out of a total of 10 are living their adult lives – totally blinded – by various ‘delirious forms of subservient imagination and passion’?, mostly – varying degrees of Religiosity) Ref, ‘The Infantile (political) Situation’ GB, UK > in the ‘Infantile American Situation’, USA’s Domestic and Foreign Policy. Culture that could be regressing to the ‘New Age of Superstition’ Carl Sagan – &/or ‘New World Order’. The semi-rational or semi-conscious state; the split personalities of our ‘political celebrities’, in the making of disastrous foreign policy decisions. Iraq’s ‘shock and awe’ and its bloody aftermath, with the abuses – imprisonment without trial, torture and secret rendition, so on…; Afghanistan and its ongoing ‘skirmish-warring’ has caused, with the Iraq War 130,000 deaths, mostly of ‘innocents, or in, so called – co-lateral damage’ by ‘mistakes’ of vastly superior forces {how many injured or permanently traumatised?} – the creation of ever more insurgents, terrorists and fundamentalists. (China’s position on the invasion of Iraq/Afghanistan: ‘unfortunate, unnecessary, and very worried about large scale ‘Human Rights’ abuses) America Wake Up ‘Cry Babies’ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KjSjpNe1-Vc&feature=related

BBC Radio 4, ‘Defining The Decade’ ‘Mission Accomplished’. Edward Stourton tries to make sense of a decade in which history has been put on fast forward. There has been a revolution in the way we communicate, widespread alarm about the planet’s very survival and a challenge to the world order. What does it mean for the way we live as we head into 2010? A decade which began with untrammelled American power and ended with America’s reputation damaged and its dominance challenged by the rise of China. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00pfrmm

Jacob Bronowski The Complete Series. ‘The Long Childhood’.
 

Three quarters of the American population literally believe in religious miracles. "At least two thirds of our miseries spring from human stupidity, human malice and those great motivators and justifiers of malice and stupidity, idealism, dogmatism and proselytizing zeal on behalf of religious or political idols." Aldous Huxley. ‘Very deeply ashamed’ – by ‘fellow’ Americans, USA http://www.gallup.com/poll/114544/darwin-birthday-believe-evolution.aspx  "Uganda is likely to pass a law within months that will make homosexuality a capital offence, joining 37 other countries in the continent where American evangelical Christian groups are increasingly spreading bigotry." http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/dec/13/death-penalty-uganda-homosexuals Rwanda, "The issue is not simply how could churches have been accomplices in the most heinous crimes? Much more disturbing, the issue is how the members of churches which had emerged from what was described as a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of communion and the Spirit of life, could they either participate in the genocide or turn their eyes the other way during that genocide." http://luckyme0.spaces.live.com/blog/cns!A18BF3FCC5E126A2!949.entry  Less appalling, but pretty atrocious http://www.gallup.com/poll/121526/Major-Economies-Threat-Climate-Change.aspx And, in the ‘personal unutterable sadness’ for my children, in the crazy-lazy silliness, of what seems (sometimes) a majority of humankind and which comes over one, of creationism or intelligent design, being mentioned or taught about in some School Science Classes, Religious Education Classes (RE) and in the appalling ridiculousness of most ‘School Religious Assemblies’, UK, GB (revoltingly silly law and crassly stupidly compulsory – a knee jerk in 1948?). Without their being one iota of evidence for the existence of an ‘angel’, or even, an iota, in the so called ‘power of prayer’, and so on…(by not instigating, the instigation of change personally, and throughout our Schools and Government UK, GB; a very bad example is made throughout the now globalised world! Neglecting this, nothing will be gained for social cohesion or ‘Human Rights’, only a very scary world of superstition, backwardness, and terror, for all our children, and this has been proved by History – see, the appalling examples in our News Papers / Media Systems on any day! Ref, example, ‘Secular France’ and the child religious sacrifices in Uganda, so on…"We no longer live just in our comfortable local area or town, we  have more responsibility; those that block change are selfish, lazy, and could be thought of as – with all the evidence at hand – ‘criminally irresponsible’.) "Children, I’ll argue, have a human right not to have their minds crippled by exposure to other people’s bad ideas—no matter who these other people are. Parents, correspondingly, have no god-given licence to enculturate their children in whatever ways they personally choose: no right to limit the horizons of their children’s knowledge, to bring them up in an atmosphere of dogma and superstition, or to insist they follow the straight and narrow paths of their own faith. In short, children have a right not to have their minds addled by nonsense. And we as a society have a duty to protect them from it. So we should no more allow parents to teach their children to believe, for example, in the literal truth of the Bible, or that the planets rule their lives, than we should allow parents to knock their children’s teeth out or lock them in a dungeon." ‘What Shall We Tell The Children?’ ‘Amnesty Lecture’ Oxford – Nicholas Humphrey. ‘What shall We Tell The Children?’ http://www.mindmeister.com/13207398 

RE Search – Agreed SyllabusDorset For You – Windows Live

"What I concluded was that this was not a body of believers (in the church), but a body of behavers. Each week people showed up, sat where they should, performed their roles, and the church went on, despite the disparity of belief. Behaviour was observable and predictable; meaning, at least in the sense of Christian belief, was multiple and somehow beyond the point of what held things together." ‘Infrastructural Determinism’ R. Brian Ferguson – writing on, ‘The Nature of Cultural Things’ Marvin Harris. "Freedom must be taught, because conformism and not freedom is natural. Most education is directed to producing conditioned and behaving animals." Forster, p123.

"And nearly two decades after she famously tore up a photo of Pope John Paul II on US television, singer Sinead O’Connor now has strong criticism to make of his successor Pope Benedict XVI. She has called his letter to the Catholics of Ireland about child abuse by clergy there "an insult not only to our intelligence, but to our faith and to our country", and called on fellow Catholics to boycott Mass until there is a full investigation into the Vatican. Tonight, she joins us for a live debate on the programme." http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/newsnight/fromthewebteam/

  

Dear Darwin, (letters episode 3)

Five leading scientists address letters to Charles Darwin, expressing their thoughts on his work and legacy.

"Professor Jerry Coyne – main research scours the heart of Darwin’s great work, On the Origin of Species. Using the humble fruit fly, case study of so much modern biology, Jerry’s team seek to understand the mechanism by which related generations first become ‘reproductively isolated’; in other words, how does a new species emerge? Over the years Jerry has, therefore, been embroiled in plenty of the discussion surrounding Intelligent Design. He tells Darwin about the huge body of evidence that has been discovered in the century since that supports his theory." http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00gdvws 

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has welcomed a US-backed climate deal in Copenhagen as an "essential beginning". http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8422133.stm

A well known exponent of ‘the art of insult’ was Barbara Ward who died in 1981, aged sixty-seven. She did it so well that she earned a Peerage, a Professorship, numerous Honorary Degrees, and a Governorship of the BBC. Popes and Presidents loved her. The President of the United States wrote to her, “Dear Barbara, you’re gracious and generous note brought a wonderful brightness…. you have given me much more than your priceless friendship, you have-brought wisdom and inspiration.” That was Johnson, not Nixon. Barbara and Nixon did not get on too well!

What did Barbara Ward say about everyone to make her so popular? She said, looking about her, “It is though one had strayed into a science fiction narrative and landed on a planet in which only fear, and greed, were institutionalized; a planet inhabited and ruled by anthropoids, with only fossilized and vestigial intelligence and a hideous preoccupation with death." She did not mean us, of course, or our rulers: we live on a different planet called our local area or town! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbara_Ward

BBC Radio 4 ‘From Fact to Fiction’ 7/8 http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/b00pb8xm With matters of climate change under international scrutiny, novelist Liz Jensen brings together three characters with wildly differing views in her comic monologue! 

The Guilt Season

Dark Matter – Professor Carlos Frenk http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carlos_Frenk ,"We only have a glimpse here, but it’s so tantalising that you couldn’t go to bed without telling the whole world about it." http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8420089.stm And http://ow.ly/16aZHR

Religion and Morality 
      First, faith made otherwise decent people commit acts of unspeakable horror, showing how ordinary and everyday feelings of human kindness and revulsion at cruelty, can be, and have been, overruled by religious belief (and dogma, secular enthusiasms, or any other, religio/political – enthusiasms) 
      Secondly, it exposes as utterly hollow the claim that religion sets an absolute and unchanging foundation for morality. 
Some maintain that their Man God had something new to say. Consider therefore this extract from the writings of China-man Mo Ti who lived in the Fourth Century B.C, "The mutual attacks of state on state, the mutual usurpation’s of family on family, the mutual robberies of man on man, the want of kindness on the part of the sovereign and of loyalty on the part of the minister, the want of tenderness and filial duty between father and son, these, and such as these, are the things injurious to the empire. All has arisen from want of mutual love. If but that one virtue could be made universal; the Prince loving one another would have no battlefield; the Chiefs of Families would attempt no usurpation’s; men would commit no robberies; rulers and ministers would be gracious and loyal; fathers and sons would be kind and filial; brothers would be harmonious and easily reconciled. Men in general loving one another; the strong would not make pray of the weak; the many would not plunder the few; the rich would not insult the poor; the noble would not be insolent to the mean, and the deceitful would not impose on the simple." I find this message more inspiring than the unproved promises of immortality and hell fire. The two largest religions, appear to me – to be, ‘carrot and stick religions’. Perhaps all are, I am not a donkey, some of the time – so I don’t respond. http://www.bing.com/reference/semhtml/Mohism And, "The first mention of the principles behind the pinhole camera, a precursor to the camera obscura, belongs to Mo-Ti (470 BC to 390 BC), a Chinese philosopher and the founder of Mohism.http://www.bing.com/reference/semhtml/Camera_obscura?mkt=zh-CN  "The Mohist tradition is unusual in Chinese 
thought because it is concerned with developing principles of logic."
 
Time 2010 to ‘rubbish’ Religious Education (RE) GB, UK, by schools, children, parents and teachers, it has gone – ‘far too far’, and ‘off the rails’, of any form of en mass acceptability, in the – ‘so very much happier’, ‘kind, liberal, and knowledge based culture’ of the 82% of the UK! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yjO4duhMRZk&feature=player_embedded ‘Aggressive Atheism’ – required 2010! 82% – ‘Religion does more harm than good’ http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2006/dec/23/religion.topstories3/print (‘The Theory and Dangers of Religion’, as part of – UK, PHSE – School Assembly & Classes. Religion has done nothing for the ‘psychic unity’, or ‘social cohesion’ of humankind; in law making, it has resulted in the unsuccessful long term habit of barbaric punitive justice systems that are so prevalent around the world; in culture, it has delayed any hard won progress of improvement with the ‘iron chains of mythical belief’, and so on…, millions of premature deaths; ‘eunuchs for heavens sake’; and an unhealthy attitude towards natural human nature, and so on…so forth)

http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20427392.400-pain-or-prayer-two-ways-to-grow-a-religion.html And http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20427395.700-2010-preview-arise-neanderthal-brother.html

One, of a very few ‘great exceptions’!

Management guru Peter Drucker called the Salvation Army the most ‘effective organisation in America’. Peter Day asks if that is true in Britain and finds out how the Army is bringing innovation to salvation. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00pd297

Related Links

  • Salvation Army, The Sandwich People (www2.salvationarmy.org.uk)
  • 40/20 Furniture Project (www.safurniture.org.uk)
  • Cass Business School (www.cass.city.ac.uk)
  • Crisis (www.crisis.org.uk)
  • British Humanist Association – Secular MEPs discuss religion, sexuality and sexual abuse "The BHA has welcomed a discussion in the European Parliament about the issue of religion, sexuality and sexual abuse across Europe. Naomi Phillips, BHA Head of Public Affairs, attended the meeting of the European Parliament Platform for Secularism in Politics (EPPSP) in Brussels yesterday, where the issue of religion and violence against children was discussed in particular. The EPPSP, which is chaired by Sophie in ’t Veld MEP, brings together MEPs from across political parties and other organisations, and focuses on the separation of church and state. Naomi Phillips said, ‘Recent revelations of the scale of sexual abuse of and violence against children by those within religious institutions and those representing religion have shaken countries around the world. Speakers from across Europe at the meeting of the EPPSP all emphasised the urgent need to hold all those responsible to account for the horrific sexual, psychological and violent crimes committed."

About luckyme0

My First family, second marriage, bringing up my 18-year-old twins, boy, and girl. I am a third generation Humanist, who has some old handwritten information and notes; collected over many years. Someone may find the articles interesting, or helpful. They could bring back a little ‘reality’, after being ‘shocked’ and ‘brainwashed’, by some malicious group, or institution (REBT Therapy). People should know better, than to do this, to our very young, and the ‘obviously’ vulnerable! Go to easily accessible, non-superstitious knowledge that is not charlatanism! https://charleslizzy.com/2011/08/06/independent-schools-inspectorate-isi-marketing-spirituality-buzzword-or-maybe-even-for-you-to-shiver-at-the-something/ The blog has given me an incentive to order my thoughts, learn, and read up again, after a few non-thinking years of (very silly) imagination and passion. Why not, get your own key to a ‘door’, customise it to suit you, and it can be, all of your very own! Don’t believe, or be led by someone else’s; inherited, stupid, and a very likely (past, and not of today’s) ‘totally preposterous reality’s’. Only some interest in the ‘really big questions’, keeps life above the level of a farce, and very little else! KEEP THINKING! Some of the posts may need some correcting. Interests: REBT Counselling, Atheism, Secularism, Humanism, Psychology, Reading, Popular Science, School Ethos, Philosophy, History, Family, Parenting, Psychology, Horse Riding, Sailing, Rescue Boat Driver, Skiing (Teppichswinger), TV Documentaries, Motorbike Cross Country Riding, Volunteer Sports Stewarding, Writing, Primitive Man, Pre-history, Social Anthropology, British Humanist Association, BHA, Meaning of Life, The Big Questions, Where am I, What am I, Why am I, Hippie Love, Knowledge, Education, Globalisation. Favorite quote: “The world belongs to those who, at least to some degree, have figured it out.” Carl Sagan, ‘The Demon Haunted World’, ‘Contact’, and other famous books DVD ‘Cosmos’. The warning of another and horrendous, “Age of Superstition”. “Isn’t there something deeply absurd in the presumption that children ought to inherit beliefs from their parents. It can be deeply damaging, even lethally divisive. A ‘them’, with an ‘against us’, mentality” – Professor Richard Dawkins. “The will to believe is stronger than mere reason in the vast majority of people” – Dr J.Brown, Army Psychologist of the 1960′s. Humans will believe in almost anything, in fact, they seek it! Why? “98% of us, trained to be just good consumers, let’s train our children to be the 2% who have their very own creativity and discernment”; quote by a famous surreal artist. “The lack of reason brings forth monsters”. “Global interconnectedness is lethal against mass religion, nationalism, racism, and other destructive memeplexes. Let us connect everybody they hate it in restrictive regimes”; from the ‘meme learning group’, Richard Brodie’s book, ‘Virus Of The Mind’ (Richard Brodie a designer for ‘Microsoft Word’). Following on, J.Bronowski, and ‘The Ascent Of Man’ TV series, and a book http://www.bbcshop.com/science+nature/the-ascent-of-man/invt/9781849901154/ with the last DVD in this series, ‘The Long Childhood’ being especially revealing. ‘Prehistory’ and the ‘Making of the Human Mind’ by Colin Renfrew, with P.Wilson’s, ‘The Domestication of the Human Species’, and Nigel Spivey’s, TV series and book, ‘How Art Made The World’, offers some further explanations. Latest reading: Jared Diamond http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jared_Diamond
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