Some: ‘Old’ & ‘New’ (writings) @ Daddy’s Space ‘The Gutter Or The Stars’.

I don’t think any ‘aliens’ would take up the offer, but I could be wrong!

utm_source=browser&utm_medium=aplication_chrome&utm_campaign=chrome Also the ‘great’ alien explorer of the universe/cosmos

Alien Baptism! “Pope Francis would welcome Martians to the church”. Note, ‘The problem of evil is that it refuses to stay in its box marked evil. It keeps on coming out to play ‘Mr Nice Guy’, or at least, ‘Mr Average’ ‘The Gulag Archipelago’ Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. Superb TV –…/the-search-for-life-the-drake…BBC iPlayer – The Search for Life: The Drake Equation – Signed
Film about the equation used to estimate the number of extra-terrestrial civilisations.
  • E (energy)=M (matter) xC (speed of light) squared i.e, Cx2 – The two (above) equations, probably, the most important cosmological ones, I can think of. ‘The Republic Of Plato’ Chapter X1X p,184, 1941 Edition ( Philodoxical – ‘Mankind’ or ‘Humankind’)“But what of those who contemplate the realities themselves as they are for ever in the same unchanging state? (regarded as static in Plato’s time) Shall we not say that they have, not mere belief, but knowledge”? “That too follows”. “And, further, that their affections goes out to the objects of knowledge, whereas the others set their affections on the objects of belief; for it was they, you remember, who had a passion for the spectacle of beautiful colours and sounds, but would not hear of beauty being a real thing”.“I remember”.“So we may fairly call them lovers of belief rather than that of wisdom – not philosophical, in fact, but ‘philodoxical’ (now, philological?). Will they be seriously annoyed by that description”? “Not if they will listen to my advice. No one ought to take offence at the truth”.The Four Stages Of Cognition. Highest to the lowest. ‘The Structuralised Levels of Consciousness’, or, ‘The Structuralized Levels of Consciousness’. Ref, ‘The Proper Structuralised View of the World’, or, ‘The Proper Structuralized View of the World’ Erich Fromm. And, ‘The Structural World View’ Dawkins.

    Ofsted, SACRE, NASACRE – Education For ‘Extremism’ In The UK – A National Disgrace, “Dispatches goes undercover to question the role of faith communities in our schools. The programme hears from those at the heart of the ‘Trojan Horse’ controversy in Birmingham, and films undercover in a primary school where clapping and whistling are described as ‘satanic’ practices. But this is an issue that isn’t just about Islam; elsewhere Dispatches uncovers a network of illegal schools where more than 1000 boys are being taught suspicion of the outside world, and the only subject is religion” And,

    Getting, on the ‘route’ to a ‘Progressive Family Philosophy’; the way for your children, as they grow up, from the ‘State Indoctrinated Religion’: especially, in our Nursery Education, to that of Humanism (atheism & secularism) The “Playground” For Faith and Belief. Religion UK. ‘The War for Children’s Minds’ Stephen Law – “Pupils are not being protected from extremist views at a Birmingham school named in the Trojan Horse inquiry, according to leaked Ofsted reports. Golden Hillock School in Sparkhill was described as inadequate by inspectors. Another leaked report claims the governing body at Saltley School “paid private investigators to interrogate the emails of senior staff”. Ofsted began inspections after claims that hard-line Muslims were trying to take over Birmingham schools. The inquiry has sparked a government row in Cabinet between ministers about how extremism in schools is handled” ‘We are (all) in the UK Cultural Christians’ Richard Dawkins – My opinion, ‘So long, as it is not done, with (captured/compulsory) ‘great authority’, as in, our ‘State Religion’ in UK Schools/Churches/Homes. Lots of time, when ‘grown up’ to realize, all is, ‘mostly bunkum and deceit’, the (psycho) shock shouldn’t be too bad, for anyone; it is when not realised, by some people, and authorities, that it can cause so much trouble, or taken in, ‘a light hearted manner’: tepid enthusiasm, maybe, is the answer’. “Richard Dawkins: Telling kids about Christmas could damage them, claims Richard Dawkins (Daily Mail)”. Lots, of his ‘stuff’ is taken out of context, for sensation, mostly, his books, if you read them, are (scientifically) quite brilliant! What is really damaging, and is potentially so very dangerous, are this lot, of our own ‘home grown extremists’ – too many have died already! And, “I wonder what we shall learn about the curriculum. Was evolutionary biology taught? Were any dancing or singing classes allowed? Were classes sexually segregated, with girls at the back, not allowed to ask questions? How were non-Muslim teachers, parents and pupils treated? Were there cultural exchange visits to Mecca and did these exclude non-Muslim pupils? Were religious education classes on Christianity contrived specially for external visitors. We have now become accustomed, unfortunately, to the painful discovery that children were abused in the state system – in some schools, hospitals, children’s homes. When these things are exposed, we all agree how disgraceful it was that the authorities turned a blind eye. The danger from Islamist extremism is comparable. It too is an abuse of children, and yet we still dare not face it” And, And, My own @ How appalling, and terrible, even, terrifying at times, it must be, to bring up a secular, and humanist family; with Britain’s (UK) (past, ‘heritage and tradition’, this in itself, pretty appalling; hopefully, now, is the beginning, of the ending of [fundamentalist] Religious School Ethoses, Faith Schools and Church Schools, in ‘The Playground For Faith And Belief UK / GB’). I know so personally, from my children, being threatened, with, ‘if they both, the twins, did not believe in ‘God’ (Christian) that ‘they could not be a ‘member’ of, their present School Class: the one Class that they were so devoted to’; heartbreaking, at that young time, they are older now, and so am I. Unfortunately the UK / GB is still growing up (slowly), as they have had a very big shock. “A culture of fear and intimidation has taken grip” in Birmingham schools caught up in the Trojan Horse claims, says Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw. Head teachers have been “marginalised or forced out of their jobs”, said Sir Michael, as he delivered his findings on claims of hard-line Muslim takeovers. The Ofsted chief said there was evidence of an “organised campaign to target certain schools”  They are at it again, in your/children’s ‘playground’ SACRE! ‘The’ Philosophy, if you like Appalling, ‘brainwashing’ of our children, ‘The school taught Accelerated Christian Education (ACE), a curriculum imported from the USA, which is taught in about 50 independent schools across the UK’ – 50 schools are signed up to this ‘rubbish’ in Britain Creationism (Creation Myths, taught as a real fact) in ‘Science Lessons’ to be made illegal in Britain UK  Humanism / Atheism, to be included all schools, as an alternative to religion, for, to include, ‘non-believers as equals’, by Law – about time! And, “The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) is holding a “replenishment” summit in Brussels on 25 June, where it will ask world leaders to provide funds for another four years. It has become one of the most influential international education organisations – channelling billions of dollars from more than 20 donor countries to support education systems in 59 developing countries. Julia Gillard, former Prime Minister of Australia and now chairwoman of the GPE, will be pressing the message that it is enlightened self-interest to invest in education. Her “hard-headed argument” will be that anyone who is serious about wanting to promote economic growth and to tackle extremism should start by building classrooms and training teachers”

    “In the modern world of drones (mechanical killing, with a less than 2% success rate, the 98% are civilians, women, and children) nuclear warheads, and the huge growing apparatus of destruction, peace is a necessity for humanity. The people of the world rightly want peace, but the United States and its allies will simply not allow it” And, “It is a more general uprising by large groupings of disaffected communities throughout north-western Iraq and a product of years of social exclusion, poor governance and corruption by the Iraqi government.

    Iraqi volunteers wearing their new uniforms on 16 June 2014 in the central Shiite Muslim Shrine city of KarbalaISIS militants have consistently out-performed more established military forces in IraqOn the military front, the key giveaway is the relatively strong performance of Isis militants against more established military forces. Officials I have spoken to in the Kurdish Peshmerga forces have indicated that the level of training is high and that their own forces have at times struggled to hold key positions around the city of Kirkuk. “For the most part we’ve been able to hold our positions, but it hasn’t been easy. They [Isis] are well armed and well trained,” one Kurdish security official told me on Tuesday. And, Or, our countries UK GB ‘clubtocracy’ – This must make you really ‘sick’, to your heart; children, living in an area scared out of their minds (and without this toy), playing with this doll (the plastic face peels down to reveal a frightening, middle-ages type ‘demon’), and for you/me, to even, possibly, think again, when an/the ‘Election’ comes around, most people, wont though. So, we/you have paid for the War in Iraq and Afghanistan, and in ‘Other Theatres’, some with their lives; trusted our Governments, and not ‘thrown’ them out, even after Snowdon’s and all the Wiki-leaks revelations. Sat-back, and not caused any real trouble. Seen most of our ‘countries wealth’ go to bailing out the ‘gambling bankers’ – this beats the lot – the ‘Osama Doll’ ‘On this episode of Breaking the Set, Abby Martin remarks on the CIA’s ridiculous plan to work with toy-maker Hasbro to create a Bin Laden action figure with a removable demon face”…/breakin…/167468-bin-laden-democracy-cia/
    “There is a new class of planet out there that astronomers are calling the “mega-Earth”. It is an object with a hard surface like our own world but much, much bigger. The necessity for the new designation follows the discovery of a planet which has a mass some 17 times that of Earth. Known as Kepler-10c, it orbits a star about 560 light-years away. Scientists described its properties at an American Astronomical Society meeting in Boston”

    “Some 23 million light years away, a nearby spiral galaxy is spinning like a pinwheel in space, putting on a fireworks display of truly galactic proportions. The galaxy NGC 4258 (also known as Messier 106 or M 106) is much like our galaxy, with the addition of two extra spiral arms that glow in X-ray, optical and radio light. These features, rather than aligning with the galactic plane, intersect with it, giving it an anomalous shape”

  • Objects States of Mind
    The Good!
    Intelligible World Forms Knowledge*
    Mathematical objects Thinking
    Visible Things Belief
    World Of Appearances Imagining
    *”The Being of Platonic philosophy – except that Plato seems to have made the enormous, the grotesque mistake of separating Being from becoming, and identifying it with the mathematical abstraction of the Idea” (‘poor fellow’)” Huxley. (Becoming human is a process, not some event.) And, Tolstoy – “As soon as man reaches the highest degree of development (in Tolstoy’s case it was just 32 years of age), he sees that all is bunkum and deceit; and that the truth, which he values above all, is terrible: that when you look at it well and clearly you awake with horror”.

    Who, and whom, we all should be ‘boycotting’ – Lets all, ‘boycott’, to bring in ‘Inclusive Capitalism’ – ‘We do have the power, we just have to use it’ – “In this episode of the Keiser Report, Max Keiser and Stacy Herbert discuss all systems fail due to too big to jail as the governor of the Bank of England claims jailing banksters won’t stop them from committing crimes in the future. Max also tells John Kerry to get his swift boat out. In the second half, Max interviews investment activist, Ronnie Moas, about the six companies in the S&P500 that he is blacklisting”. Also, If you/we haven’t the time; just a quick read will do. Spread it around!  RT – and its ‘short-cut’: the very best news service, with some really amazing, and young reporters that are outside the ‘club-tocracy’ and the ghastly current ‘klept-tocracy’, of the UK, Euro-land, USA, and so on… At last, and some fun news. Left to hang; Y fronts required, or ‘fair game’, for the ‘purity-leaguers’? And, ” The policy of the emperors and the senate, as far as it concerned religion, was happily seconded by the ‘reflections of the enlightened’, and by the habits of the superstitious part of their subjects. The various modes of worship which prevailed in the Roman world were all considered by the people as equally true; by the philosopher as equally false; and by the magistrate as equally useful. And thus toleration produced not only mutual indulgence, but even religious concord”. Edward Gibbon, ‘The Decline And Fall Of The Roman Empire’.

    “A new theory suggests that our male ancestors evolved beefy facial features as a defence against fist fights. The bones most commonly broken in human punch-ups also gained the most strength in early “hominin” evolution. They are also the bones that show most divergence between males and females. The paper, in the journal Biological Reviews, argues that the reinforcements evolved amid fighting over females and resources, suggesting that violence drove key evolutionary changes” And, “Diet has been suggested as one of the reasons for the Neanderthals’ extinction, some 30-40,000 years ago. As meat-eaters, the explanation goes, they were out-competed by the more adaptable Homo sapiens”

    “A scientist who predicted the Higgs boson – and another who helped to find it – have been knighted in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list. Prof Tom Kibble of Imperial College London was one of six researchers whose work in the 1960s led to the eventual discovery of the Higgs. The elusive particle was finally detected in 2012 at Cern by two giant experiments – Atlas and CMS. CMS was designed by Prof Tejinder Jim Virdee, also of Imperial”

    ‘Huge amounts of water found under the Earth’s mantle’

    ‘In The Garden – A Moth On A Wild Patch. My Reply To A (younger) Lady – A Date Declined’. “Oh no; completely, utterly, heartbroken. And, I’m an ‘old-hippie’, as well; willing to run off, into a “patch” of wildness. I must get some much better credentials, but I’m, probably, barking (mad – it’s the ‘blooming’ time of year, is it not?) up the wrong tree. For a most ‘attractive lady’ (that will do me know good), maybe, ‘bright lady’ (could help). You have no sympathy, for pathetic, boring, old gits; like all the ‘young ones’ (that could help: a lot!). A new poem by Dylan Thomas, has just been found; the master of bawdy-ness, emotion, and love. Amelia and Christopher, think poetry boring, aren’t they doing any ‘good stuff’ at School, at least something to stir their blood – how very silly schools are (today). The Greeks, were really great, at my Prep School, with all those suitors being murdered, so on…, suppose, it’s not really, quite, PC today. Might, end up with them challenging the status quo; like we (all) did, in the 1960’s. Or, Plato (4th Century BC?); ‘corrupting’ the youth of Athens, no mean feat, in those times, and in Athens. Mediocrity, and conformity; the ‘enemies of all mankind’. The Government, wants our schools to follow, all the awful ghastliness of the schools in China, and some of the dreadful Asian schools – the last ‘bloody’ thing we want, but the kids won’t revolt – mine are ‘completely stuck’; so very saddening. Try And And, My comment – All our kids, turning to the ‘right’, ‘towing the line’ and Status-quo, of ‘government propaganda’, true, or false; to survive (demo’s, are out) – how pathetic, for our generation, to behold; but so very much easy/easier for parents, and for now: how long will this/it last? Conservative youth, Y Generation, and, Kirsty Walk BBC News Night

    The Summer Solstice at Stonehenge GB, UK – Any one else going? Off your asses, all you ‘young parents’? We are leaving at 2.30 am, Sunrise at 4.50 am, perfect weather, for (us) heathens/sun worshippers, and Pagans. Taking cameras, and a bunch of teenagers; how exciting! Notes – Latest science – 9,000 yrs ago (they) started building on the Stonehenge site, then BC 2,300-1,900 as a principal (healing) attraction for the people of Europe and possibly much further afield; blue stones, the small ones, could be chipped (with permission from the ‘guards’, one possible young thief, was found with several arrow marks on his skeleton, and buried with 3 blue stone amulets, around 2,000BC) to make (healing) amulets. Why? “In every primitive (anthropological anomie/anomy – anomic, bricoleurs or Bricolage and pre-logical) tribe we find the medicine man in the centre of society and it is easy to show that the medicine man (sometimes: a leader, politician, doctor, celebrity, or royal, or as; the ‘archer’s’ body and came from the Alps, uncovered at Stonehenge, he recovered from a nasty tooth abscess, was close to death, thus; could show ‘others’ the way to healing; he was buried with the ‘full honours’, with some beautiful grave goods, maybe, people with deformities, could hold the same power over others – ‘one who knows what is best for all others’) is either, a neurotic or a psychotic or at least that his art is based on the same mechanisms as a neurosis or a psychosis. Human groups are actuated by their group ideals, and these are always based on the infantile situation. The infancy situation is modified or inverted by the process of maturation, again modified by the necessary adjustment to reality, yet it is there and supplies those unseen libidinal ties without which no human groups could exist. The medicine men are the leaders in this infantile game and the lightning conductors of common anxiety. They fight the demons so that others can hunt the pray and in general fight reality.” Dr Geza Roheim, ‘The Origin and Function of Culture’. And, the progress/history of humankind – 1) Episodic Stage – Primate cognition 2) Mimetic Stage – 4 million to 400,000 years (peaking with Homo erectus) 3) Mythic Stage – first use of complex language – 500,000 years to the present (peaking with Homo sapiens) 4) Material Symbolic Stage. Leslie White recognised this as defining the ‘importance in human culture’ (icons of religious faith, amongst the many other symbols) 5) Theoretic Stage. Donald calls this ‘institutionalised paradigmatic thought’ (writing – ‘massive external memory storage’). A better and more detailed explanation can be found in Colin Renfrew’s fascinating book ‘Prehistory’. Writing this to try and clarify it in my own mind, as it must be (and in my great ignorance), the ground breaking formation of a basis (and) origin for (all our own) leaning! – stunning! ‘Lucy’ our ancestor – at more than 3 million yrs, ago. And, “Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the Sun. The object that gives the Earth its light and heat is a massive ball of gas and plasma 93 million miles away. Thanks to the nuclear fusion reactions taking place at its core, the Sun has been shining for four and a half billion years. Its structure, and the processes that keep it burning, have fascinated astronomers for centuries” With, Carolin Crawford-Gresham Professor of Astronomy and Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge. Yvonne Elsworth-Poynting Professor of Physics at the University of Birmingham. Louise Harra-Professor of Solar Physics at UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory. Producer: Thomas Morris.

    Charles Williams's photo.
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Wake Up! ‘Reptilian Brain Theory’; ‘Reptilian Society’; ‘Reptilian Government’; ‘Reptilian Religion’; ‘Reptilian Groups’; ‘Reptilian Culture’?

‘The Reptilian’s Pacts’ (Humans Species). ‘Wake Up!’ And, The ‘great’ Carl Sagan (‘The Demon Haunted World’); his ashes were sprinkled into Space! And, Dr Timothy Leary a hero of my generation. “Seven grams of Leary’s ashes were arranged by his friend at Celestis to be buried in space aboard a rocket carrying the remains of 24 others including Gene Roddenberry (creator of Star Trek), Gerard O’Neill (space physicist), and Krafft Ehricke (rocket scientist). A Pegasus rocket containing their remains was launched on April 21, 1997, and remained in orbit for six years until it burned up in the atmosphere”. ‘Will you be a chosen one’? And, Superb TV (Carl Sagan SETI)

‘Living In A Dream Bubble’.  “The oldest known survivor of the Nazi Holocaust, Alice Herz-Sommer, has died in London at the age of 110. Born into a Jewish family in Prague in 1903, Ms Herz-Sommer spent two years in a Nazi concentration camp in Terezin”.

Looking forward to the ‘School Lecture’, given by, Prof Richard Overy, tonight, who has written many books on the WWII Holocaust. Were the Germans ‘involved’, driven by ‘ideology’, and were they; ‘only, just, ordinary people’; like you, and I? How did they keep on killing, and at ‘close quarters’, not, over just a few days, but week, after week, year, on year (for some); keeping up daily, this horrendous moment-on! The/his angle on this all, and the motivation for killing; from the Historians, and the Psychologists, point of view! I hope that he includes the Anthropologists; in all this ‘hard work’; and to the many, who do, and very much prefer, to live behind the ‘veils of illusion’; about our very own species genealogy that did come off the ‘human evolutionary line’, from the Reptiles, more than a few hundreds of millions of years, ago!

Brilliant, I can’t get this documentary out of my mind! Over, half of our family, wiped out, or damaged; like many other family’s. Disaster, for years after it, when they (the people) were all promised so much! A very ‘dodgy’ world, we live in, we had better make the most of today, as tomorrow, could (easily be, suddenly) a complete disaster! The little problems in our lives, pale to insignificance, (again, for me) after watching this prog! Notes (whilst, I have some time): ‘Miligram Test’; Don Mclean ‘Reptillian Brain Theory’; ‘Veil of Illusion’, Amartya Sen ‘The Violence of Illusion’; ‘Mirror Neurons’ & ‘The Emerging Mind’ Vilayanur Ramachandran. ‘The Long Childhood’, in the ‘Ascent of Man’ BBC series, Jacob Bronowski; Margaret Singer ‘The Six Conditions for Thought Reform’; ‘Reality Check’ & ‘Update & Blogroll’, luckyme0, www.charleslizzy.com And, ‘The Global Gullibility Index’. “The peninsula of Crimea in southern Ukraine is at the centre of what is being seen as the biggest crisis between Russia and the West since the Cold War. Troops loyal to Russia have taken control of the region and the pro-Russian parliament has voted to join the Russian Federation, to be confirmed in a referendum” For some ‘greater’ information at RT TV

Bored (leaders), with the ‘failure’ of the Euro (15 yr old promises broken, of prosperity and wealth, for ordinary people, and full employment); bored with the failure of USA’s foreign policy, and the ‘rip-off’ banking crisis and lack of ‘face’; failure of the world-wide (government’s) ‘youth un-employment policy’, leading to ‘far right’, or left-wing gangs, ‘Hitler Youth’s’, or the, ‘equivalents’; Bored, with corruption, and non-payment of tax, by the ‘multi-nationals’, and the hoarding of wealth in ‘Sovereign Funds’ by a few; bored by inequality and the picking on the vulnerable, as an excuse, for ‘Austerity’s Policy’s’.
‘War Never Changes And Young Gentlemen Forget’ – ”In that cavalry mess I heard queer conversations. Those officers belonged to the old families of England, the old caste of aristocracy, but the foul outrage of the war, the courage against all ideals of civilization had made them think; some of them for the first time, about the structure of social life and of the human family. They hated Germany, as the direct cause of war, but they looked deeper than that and saw how the leaders of all great nations in Europe had maintained the philosophy of force, and had built up hatreds and fears, and alliances, over the heads of the people’s whom they inflamed with passion or duped lies. “The politicians are the guilty ones”, said one cavalry officer. “I am all for revolution after the bloody massacre. I would hang all politicians, diplomats, and so-called statesmen with strict impartiality”. “I’m for the people”, said another. “The poor bloody people who are kept in ignorance and then driven into the shambles, when their rulers desire to grab some new part of the earth’s surface or to get their armies going because they are bored with peace”. “What price Christianity?” Asked another, inevitably. “What have the Churches done to stop war or preach the Gospel of Christ? The Bishop of London, the Archbishop of Canterbury, all those conventional, patriotic, cannon-blessing, banner baptising humbugs. God! They make me tired”! The Same Words – Strong words to hear in a cavalry mess! Strange turmoil in the souls of men! They were the same words I heard from the ‘London Boys’ in Ypres (slang -“Wipers” 1914-18 World War 1) spoken just as crudely! But, many young gentlemen, who spoke those words have already forgotten them, or would deny them”. ‘Realities of War’ Philip Gibbs, Volume 1, P.244. WW1 WAS STARTED FOR A LOT LESS THAN THIS!, Marching towards a Third World War?

‘The battles of this century are less likely to be the product of extreme political ideology – like those of the 20th century – but they could easily be fought around the questions of cultural or religious difference.’ Tony Blair, 25 January 2014 – “The US Strategic Command, the agency responsible for country’s nuclear arsenal, will hold large-scale war games this week that will include 10 B-52 Stratofortresses and up to six B-2 Spirit bombers, along with other military and government agencies. The Boeing B-52 Stratofortress is a long-range, subsonic, jet-powered strategic bomber built to carry nuclear weapons”. Just what we don’t want, or need (at this time). This lot, playing silly-buggers, with us, and others, in NATO; including the Germans. The Eastern Ukrainians don’t like the Germans, with fire-power, at all, and with some very good reasons. Most Germans, don’t want this either, nor do most people, with very good reasons too. Stupidly, we are ‘upping the anti’, because our leaders are ‘bored’ (failures). Failure at home UK, with the EU (German, dominated) policy – UKIP likely to win the coming elections, too.

Am I a ‘safe citizen’? I maybe not, but I know a few? Hitler (Nazis) banned this book, you can see why! Something, I have been reading – Getting, fed up and tired out, with all the ‘power politics’? The News, in general? Life, even? ‘Go back to the Garden’, at least, in your mind, and with a very good book, of any sort. ‘ On the first days of these new wanderings, the first greedy tumult of new-won freedom, Goldmund had to learn all over again to live the homeless, timeless life of the roads. The homeless live the lives of valiant children, obeying none, their only lord the changing sky, with no aim before them, and no roof over them, owning nothing, ready for any hazard – their beggarly and stalwart lives. The are Adam’s sons, who was turned forth, and brothers of the innocent beasts. From the hand of God, from hour to hour, they take whatever He may send them, sun, rain, mist, snow, heat or cold, famine or bellyful, and never notice how time goes, or consider the future, or man’s history. For them there is no striving to be great; they have no knowledge of that strange idol called well-being to which the owners cling so fervently. A vagrant may be savage or gentle, skilled in his life or slow to cope with it, valiant or cowardly, he is a child. He lives for ever in the Garden before the coming of wars and cities, his steps guided on for ever by a few simple needs and longings. Cunning or slow of mind; feeling in the depth of his heart how brittle and fugitive is all life, how meagely and fearfully living things carry their spark of warmth through the icy universe; or else a poor gluttonous simpleton going in the wake of his gnawing belly – either of these is the deep implacable enemy and deadly rival of safe citizens. They dread him as they dread to be reminded of the running away of all that is, the eternal withering out of warmth and joy into chill inescapable death, which lives in the air and eats up all men’. ‘Narziss and Goldmund’, Hermann Hesse (1877-1962).

“Finding a virus still capable of infecting its host after such a long time is still pretty astounding – but just how long other viruses could remain viable in permafrost is anyone’s guess. It will depend a lot on the actual virus. I doubt they are all as robust as this one. “He added (Prof Claverie): “We freeze viruses in the laboratory to preserve them for the future. If they have a lipid envelope – like flu or HIV, for example – then they are a bit more fragile, but the viruses with an external protein shell – like foot and mouth and common cold viruses – survive better”

Have you been to, or even, thinking, of sending your children, to a Prep School; Public School; Separating; Divorcing; Living on your own, so on?.., maybe, think hard about it. Have some ‘back up’ hydrocortisone, or get tested; later in life, up to 60 years later; when you really might not feel so good!
“We are social creatures. Cortisol has also been linked to various types of separation. One widely studied form of separation is maternal separation. Following maternal separation, there is a significant increase in cortisol among both the mother and the infant. These changes are due to dysfunctions in the Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis during a critical period in childhood. One study found that cortisol levels significantly decreased in peer-reared Rhesus monkeys in comparison to mother-reared monkeys at the age of two years. This difference was significant at the mark of two years, and remained significant when tested again at three and a half years.[14] This study marks the importance of maternal care, showing that despite being raised by a large support group, Rhesus monkeys experience high increases in cortisol when raised without their mother.
These effects of maternal separation on cortisol also continue much later in life. One study which examined mid-aged men and women and found that separation lasting 1 or more years during childhood is associated with decreased levels of cortisol secretion, possibly symbolizing a diminished activity of the HPA axis.[15] Another study examined adults who were put in to foster care during World War II. Those separated from both of their parents had higher levels of cortisol in comparison to those who were not separated. These effects were seen more than 60 years after the childhood separation had occurred. This study also found that the length of separation did not affect hormonal responses. .[16]
These studies mark the importance of maternal care and its effect on cortisol levels not only during childhood separations, but also cortisol levels later in life. More research is needed in this area to be sure of the definite cause of different HPA axis functioning later in life. Also, future research is needed to be sure there is indeed a critical period for maternal separation and its resulting decrease in cortisol. .[15]
Aside from maternal separation, studies have found that increases in cortisol levels are also associated with romantic partner separations. These increases in cortisol were more commonly found when the partner who was left for a period of 4 to 6 days has a high attachment anxiety. This could be due to increased stress when their partner was away. But, further evidence is needed to identify the relationship between romantic separation and cortisol”. And,

‘Silly-Billies’, of the, ‘European Politico Class’, Vote UKIP

“The evidence for an “ocean” of water under the surface of Saturn’s moon Enceladus appears to be overwhelming. The little world has excited scientists ever since jets of icy material were seen squirting into space from a striped region at its south pole. Now, exquisite measurements using Nasa’s Cassini probe as it flew over the moon have allowed researchers to detect the water’s gravitational signal”

“Members of a group are more likely to lie after they inhale the “love hormone” oxytocin, a study has found. This hormone is known to be released during close bonding between groups, and mothers also release it during childbirth and breastfeeding. The results suggest that individuals in closely bonded groups are more likely to lie when it benefits the group than when it only benefits the individual”

Getting on with it, whatever that may be?

Philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer spoke of the subject in 19th century: “And as the capacity for believing is strongest in childhood, special care is taken to make sure of this tender age. This has much more to do with the doctrines of belief taking root than threats and reports of miracles. If, in early childhood, certain fundamental views and doctrines are paraded with unusual solemnity, and an air of the greatest earnestness never before visible in anything else; if, at the same time, the possibility of a doubt about them be completely passed over, or touched upon only to indicate that doubt is the first step to eternal perdition, the resulting impression will be so deep that, as a rule, that is, in almost every case, doubt about them will be almost as impossible as doubt about one’s own existence.”—Arthur Schopenhauer, On Religion: A Dialogue. Several authors have been critical of religious indoctrination of children, such as Nicolas Humphrey,[4] Daniel Dennett[5] and Richard Dawkins.[6] Christopher Hitchens and Dawkins use the term child abuse to describe the harm that some religious upbringings inflict on children.[7][8] Dawkins has written a children’s book that seeks to convince them of what he deems to be the fallacy of various religious teachings[9] and states that he is angered by the labels – “Muslim child”, or, “Catholic child”. He asks how a young child can be considered intellectually mature enough to have such independent views on the cosmos and humanity’s place within it. By contrast, Dawkins points out, no reasonable person would speak of a “Marxist child”, or a “Tory child.”[7] He suggests there is little controversy over such labeling because of the, “weirdly privileged status of religion”. On several occasions Dawkins has also made the controversial claim that sexually abusing a child is “arguably less” damaging than “the long term psychological damage inflicted by bringing up a child Catholic in the first place”[7]  “The former national head of counter terrorism is to lead an inquiry into 25 Birmingham schools over allegations of a hard-line Islamist takeover plot. But the appointment of Peter Clarke, an ex-deputy assistant commissioner of the Met, was described as “desperately unfortunate” by the chief constable of West Midlands Police, Chris Sims. The Department for Education (DfE) has appointed Mr Clarke to review evidence. Birmingham City Council said it had more than 200 reports over its inquiry”

Easter Truth’s. Married life; what (very important) things men have to think about, such as: the latest discovery of a ‘look alike world’ billions of miles away; midnight ramblings with a wife or partner; the ‘late night conversations’ or ‘the early morning ones’, when (all) the kids are asleep, so on… “It is not surprising that husbands and wives seem so little part of one another. It is surprising that there is so much love as there is. For there is no food for it. What does it live upon – what nourishes it? Husbands and wives never seem to have anything to say to one another. What do they talk about? Not about any great religious, social (sexual), political questions or feelings. They talk about who shall come to dinner, who is to live in this lodge and who in that, about the improvement of the place, or when they shall go to London… But any real communion between husband and wife – any descending into the depths of their being, and drawing out thence what they find and comparing it – do we ever dream of such a thing? Yes, we may dream of it during the season of ‘passion’, but we shall not find it afterwards. We even expect it to go off, and lay our account that it will. If the husband has, by chance (or study), gone into the depths of his being, and found there anything unorthodox, he, oftenest, conceals it carefully from his wife (the rest of the world, in my own private opinion as well), – he is afraid of ‘unsettling’ her opinions”. Florence Nightingale (1820-1910) book called, ‘Cassandra’; not published at that time, as was advised, by her male friends. What have you found out, guys, but you can’t tell your wife (partner)? And, working on – “Why is thought, being a secretion in the brain, more wonderful than gravity and the property of matter? It is our arrogance…our admiration of ourselves” Charles Darwin (1809-1882).

Oh Dear! Corporate spies, means-testing depression, & self-UNemployed [E105]AFP Photo / APN

Afshin Rattansi goes underground in the booming sector of corporate surveillance. Journalist and comedian Mark Thomas discusses his personal experience of being spied on by one of the largest corporations in Britain, and the ‘domestic extremist’ …

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Davos, Switzerland. World Economic Forum. Oxfam: 85 richest people as wealthy as poorest half of the world. “The world’s wealthiest people aren’t known for travelling by bus, but if they fancied a change of scene then the richest 85 people on the globe – who between them control as much wealth as the poorest half of the global population put together – could squeeze onto a single double-decker”. Where are our young (fighters for, freedom and rights)? “They’re too busy trying to get by, argues Caroline Mortimer, a recent graduate, “We’re aware of the problems of an ageing population. But we can’t think about pensions and buying houses because we’ve got to get an actual job and pay the rent”. She argues that the notion of “respecting your elders” may also have blunted the desire to take on the baby boomer’s. And there’s still an attitude that young people are “ungrateful”, she believes. “Older people are worried about their own children but not other people’s kids” And, “Political Spin” – “Put forth a, ‘closed system of logic and an authoritarian structure that permits no feedback’, and refuses to be modified except by leadership approval or executive order. The group has a top-down, pyramid structure.  The leaders must have verbal ways of never losing.” Ref, Stanley Milgram And,

“Genes that cause disease in people today were picked up through interbreeding with Neanderthals, a major study in Nature journal suggests. They passed on genes involved in type 2 diabetes, Crohn’s disease and – curiously – smoking addiction. Genome studies reveal that our species (Homo sapiens) mated with Neanderthals after leaving Africa”

“Scientists have shed light on what ancient Europeans looked like. Genetic tests reveal that a hunter-gatherer who lived 7,000 years ago had the unusual combination of dark skin and hair and blue eyes. It has surprised scientists, who thought that the early inhabitants of Europe were fair. The research, led by the Institute of Evolutionary Biology in Barcelona, Spain, is published in the journal Nature”

“Why is thought, being a secretion in the brain, more wonderful than gravity and the property of matter? It is our arrogance…our admiration of ourselves” Charles Darwin (1809-1882).

My, ‘Acromegaly’: 6 in 100,000 (being diagnosed, more frequently, now, see if you can spot it). Just had the operation and a bit ‘shook-en up’, to say the least! I had the most wonderful neurosurgeon, who I cannot thank enough, and some splendid nursing care. At least it is all over, for now, except for lots of resting (brain-rest: at least 20 years, on the neurosurgeon’s instructions!) having fun; enjoying our children growing up! All the petty worries are so insignificant, now, having got the t-shirt for brain surgery; love to you all, and thanks for the kind support to Lizzy, at this very difficult time. Photos soon, my face is changing already – I can nearly smile again! Vision is coming back (wider), so on. Wiki – Prognosis upon treatment (you have to take the plunge, for the operation, if you are well enough, 35 yrs, at least, undiagnosed). Upon successful treatment, symptoms and complications generally improve substantially or disappear, including headaches, visual disturbances, excess sweating and diabetes. Soft tissue swellings generally decrease and acromegaly-associated facial features gradually return towards normal although this may take some time. Life expectancy after the successful treatment of early (we were a bit late) acromegaly is equal to that of the normal population. Photos, soon, could make lots of money and be famous, like ‘Jaws’, in the ‘James Bond’ films! “Pituitary disorders are considered rare. It is estimated that there are between 50,000 and 70,000 pituitary patients in the United Kingdom, which equates to 0.08% – 0.11% of the population. The most common problem with the pituitary gland occurs when a benign tumour (used to describe a ‘growth’) also called an adenoma, develops. Pituitary tumours are not ‘brain tumours’. The term benign is used by doctors to describe a swelling which is not cancerous. Some pituitary tumours can exist for years without causing symptoms and some will never produce symptoms. Most pituitary tumours occur in people with no family history of pituitary problems and the condition is not usually passed on from generation to generation. Only very occasionally are tumours inherited – for example, in a condition known as multiple endocrine neoplasia (MEN1). By far the most common type of tumour (about half of all cases) is the ‘non-functioning’ tumour. This is a tumour which doesn’t produce any hormones itself. It can cause headaches and visual problems or it can press on the pituitary gland, causing it to stop producing the required amount of one or more of the pituitary hormones. This effect can also happen by the treatment you are given for a tumour, such as surgery or radiotherapy. Alternatively, your pituitary tumour may begin to generate too much of one or more hormones. Most common pituitary disorders – Acromegaly!” And, been thinking. Abraham (marfans and acromegaly, disease); John (cushings disease) in the song, so sad ! NHS UK’s computerisation and relaying of all our medical information, my (initial) thoughts, to those who are against it – ‘My only concern is becoming very ill, and the health service not knowing about my condition of acromegaly, post operation, and having a Addison’s crisis, where I need extra hydrocortisone to avoid death. Many other people could be, with an instant diagnosis and in an emergency situation; could be given the wrong drugs, or treatments, if country wide info is not available. Also, from the research point of view, so much more, faster progress could be made?! And, opening up data, has been found to be, better for public knowledge than secretive data, so far! Stigmatisation seems to loose its power, in a non-secretive environment, and in the financial world re the crash! A global view of, safety in numbers (info, available to all, with the internet); power against corruption, could be taken as this,   “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’). The outcome of all this, I feel, will be in our human history, which is still in a very juvenile (socially backward, as against the advancement of science) state, I feel, in most of the world’.


‘The ‘Something’, in human life; a ‘cold chill’ that runs down my/your spine, or a warm feeling of well being, and, sometimes, maybe, a ‘(cosmic) connectedness’.Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) – marketing – spirituality, buzzword, or maybe (even: for you to shiver at!) ‘The Something’! All ‘scientists/realists feel’, but science doesn’t. Science, is a Latin word for knowledge.…/independent-schools…/

The Something “The Rev Klaas Hendrikse can offer his congregation little hop

Get your heads round it, kids! A picture graph, done by my Dad, when I was just a teenager. ‘Quaternary Period’, in fact, we are due for a new ‘ice age’, this can happen in a few years, when the ‘tipping point’ is reached! Humans, are probably, an evolutionary mistake (random mutation), but we don’t like to think about it. Smart organisms survive, 99% fail, or have failed; how smart are we? Look at this, and getting worse “Global Gullibility ‘For, Dawkins, “Religious gullibility is not only an illustration of, but may be a precursor to, a more global form of gullibility. As he said, if you can believe, “Something as daft as the transubstantiation [then] you can believe anything”, and (witness the story of Doubting Thomas) these people are trained to see that as a virtue” (p. 141). “In other words, training children to accept nonsensical religious notions may predispose them to accept all kinds of other nonsense with a similar blind trust”  “Nothing is so fatal to religion as indifference, which is, at least, half infidelity” Edmund Burke (1728-1797).


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BBC – ‘Big Science Season’. Getting Up To (Light) Speed. With (Blogroll – Daddy’s Space, ‘The Gutter Or The Stars’) Extras.

The Final Frontier? A Horizon Guide to the Universe is part of the BBC Four Big Science Season. Discover the other programmes in the season below…
Order and Disorder: A two-part series presented by Professor Jim Al-Khalili which tells the story of how humanity mastered the two most important concepts of the modern age – energy and information.
Seven Ages of Starlight: A “stunning journey” through the life and times of stars.
Tails You Win: The Science of Chance: Professor David Spiegelhalter tries to pin down what chance is, revealing how it works in the real world.
Voyager: To the Final Frontier: A look at NASA’s Voyager programme as the two spacecraft leave the Solar System.
“The British Isles are home to just one percent of the world’s population and yet our small collection of rocks poking out of the north Atlantic has thrown up world beaters in virtually every field of human endeavour… Brian Cox”

Scientists in push to find antigravity:

Prof Peter Higgs has received his Nobel prize for physics at a ceremony in Stockholm.

Edinburgh University emeritus professor shared this year’s physics prize with Francois Englert for work on the theory of the Higgs boson. In the 1960s, they were among the physicists who proposed a mechanism to explain why the most basic building blocks of the Universe have mass.  Winners in other Nobel categories will also receive their awards at the event. These include this year’s laureates in chemistry, economics, medicine and literature.King Carl Gustav presented Prof Higgs with his Nobel medal by Sweden’s King Carl Gustav at the Stockholm Concert Hall just before 1600 GMT “Astronomers have estimated how many of the 100 billion stars in our galaxy hosts a potentially habitable planet. Using data from Nasa’s Kepler space telescope, they argue that one in five stars like the Sun hosts an Earth-sized world located in the “habitable zone”. This zone is the region around a star where temperatures allow for water – a key ingredient for life – to stay liquid at the surface. The researchers have published details in the journal PNAS” “What this means is, when you look up at the thousands of stars in the night sky, the nearest Sun-like star with an Earth-size planet in its habitable zone is probably only 12 light years away and can be seen with the naked eye,” said co-author Erik Petigura, from the University of California, Berkeley”.

“A landmark report says scientists are 95% certain that humans are the “dominant cause” of global warming since the 1950s. The report by the UN’s climate panel details the physical evidence behind climate change”  “Five Mysteries of the Brain”

“There is a surprising amount of water bound up in the soil of Mars, according to an analysis done onboard the US space agency’s (Nasa) Curiosity rover. When it heated a small pinch of dirt scooped up from the ground, the most abundant vapour detected was H2O. Curiosity researcher Laurie Leshin and colleagues tell Science Magazine that Mars’ dusty red covering holds about 2% by weight of water” 


“Nobel Prize-winning scientist Prof Peter Higgs has revealed he did not know he had won the award until a woman congratulated him in the street. Prof Higgs, who does not own a mobile phone, said a former neighbour had pulled up in her car as he was returning from lunch in Edinburgh. He added: “She congratulated me on the news and I said ‘oh, what news?”. The woman had been alerted by her daughter in London that Prof Higgs had won the award, he revealed. He added: “I heard more about it obviously when I got home and started reading the messages.” The 84-year-old emeritus professor at the University of Edinburgh was recognised by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences for his work on the theory of the particle which shares his name, the Higgs boson. He shares this year’s physics prize with Francois Englert of Belgium, and joins the ranks of past Nobel winners including Marie Curie and Albert Einstein.” 

Appalling Shock Figures – “Young adults in England have scored among the lowest results in the industrialised world in international literacy and numeracy tests. A major study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) shows how England’s 16 to 24-year-olds are falling behind their Asian and European counterparts. England is 22nd for literacy and 21st for numeracy out of 24 countries. The OECD’s Andreas Schleicher warned of a shrinking pool of skilled workers. Unlike other developed countries, the study also showed that young people in England are no better at these tests than older people, in the 55 to 65 age range. When this is weighted with other factors, such as the socio-economic background of people taking the test, it shows that England is the only country in the survey where results are going backwards – with the older cohort better than the younger”

“Professor Brian Cox takes a look through nearly 50 years of BBC archive at the story of man’s relationship with the Moon. From the BBC’s space fanatic James Burke testing out the latest NASA equipment to 1960s interviews about the bacon-flavoured crystals that astronauts can survive on in space, to the iconic images of man’s first steps on the Moon and the dramatic story of Apollo 13, Horizon and the BBC have covered it all. But since President Kennedy’s goal of landing a man on the Moon before the end of the 1960s was reached, no one has succeeded in reigniting the public’s enthusiasm for space travel and lunar voyages. Why? On his journey through the ages, Professor Cox explores the role that international competition played in getting man to the Moon and asks if, with America no longer the world’s only superpower, we are at the dawn of a bright new space age”

The USA’s Debt Crisis – A Senator’s Comments, “Secularism is about 20 to 30 years behind Europe’s, and that is why we have so much trouble with the Far Right Wing (minority – Tea Party-ists) for their ideology/beliefs they are prepared to hold (up – in the pioneer spirit) the USA’s Budget and Obama’s Health Bills, possibly damaging the World’s Economies.”

Then, As Now: And, “The Ordeal Of Desire” And, $35 billion world-wide sex – slave industry, worse than then “The idea that there were several different human species walking the Earth two million years ago has been dealt a blow. Instead, scientists say early human fossils found in Africa and Eurasia may have been part of the same species. Writing in the journal Science, the team says that Homo habilisHomo rudolfensis and Homo erectus are all part of a single evolving lineage that led to modern humans”

Russell Brand (NewStatesman) ‘Up The ‘Revolution’ Jeremy Paxman BBC TV And, And, “Only the influence of exemplary individuals whom they accept as their leaders will induce them to perform the labour and suffer the voluntary privations on which the continued existence of culture depends […]. However, there is a risk so far as [the leaders] are concerned that, in order to retain their influence, they will yield to the mass more than the mass yields to them, which is why it seems necessary for them to have access to instruments of power making them independent of the mass. In short, two very common properties of human beings are to blame for the fact that only through a measure of coercion can cultural institutions be upheld: humans are not, of their own volition, keen on work, and arguments are powerless against their passions” Freud.    My dreams of the Parliamentarians, taken away from the Parliament in London, away from the delusions of grandeur, and disconnect, they seem to inherit from there location; be relocated in an office block in Basingstoke, or Milton Keynes; will never happen, social science has not been developed this far! So, we will  have to develop this in our dreams. Politics, and our social systems, should be no more, or no more less, than in the design, maintenance, or the upkeep, of our drains. See,

“A new image has captured the birth and death of stars in one of our closest galactic neighbours – the Large Magellanic Cloud. It also shows the remnants a supernova explosion caused by the death of a massive star that has run out of fuel. Located about 163,000 light-years away, the LMC is visible with the naked eye from the Southern Hemisphere. The detailed image was taken by the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile” party of (crooked – Lib Dems broken promises and more…,) coalition, UK Government (that nobody wanted) ups its appalling nastiness, the ‘Nasty Party of Conservatives’ (right wingers). Ed Wilson, of the accountants PwC, said: “The Chancellor announced that someone in their 40’s won’t get their state pension until they are aged 68; the linkage to life expectancy is likely to mean someone starting work now will have to wait to age 72, and a child born today is unlikely to receive their state pension until they reach 77” (not, even OK, for desk jockeys) –

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From Tehran to Turkey and Texas, the battle for tolerance is upon us.

“Not so long ago, the world used to be easy to divide up. For much of the 20th century, it was a contest between left and right, between command economies and free-market ones. All of eastern Europe, Russia, China and swathes of Latin America were toiling under the yoke of Marxism; western Europe was in a social-democratic middle or socialist muddle, with America and post-Thatcher Britain representing the power of market capitalism. We know how that worked out. What we didn’t know was what would replace it when India, China and Russia — let alone South America — embraced, in varying degrees, the market and its tangible success in making people’s lives more materially comfortable than at any point in human history” 

“There has been enough of politicians and academics betraying their ideals and there has been enough talk on the subject. Young people need our revolutionary friendship, our support and our allegiance in finding a means of imagining a more optimistic future and combining to create it”  Combining to create it – “The social web and mobile technologies have accelerated the rate at which relationships develop, information is shared and influence takes hold. People now use social technology to help shape the world’s events and culture” Corruption & Politics – “A new survey for the BBC World Service has found widespread perceptions of economic unfairness – The poll found that more than 50% of respondents in 17 out of 22 countries believe economic benefits and burdens are not fairly distributed in their own nation” And, “Culture change strategists all agree about the urgent need to promote “global consciousness,” or “cosmic consciousness.” This generally refers to a broad worldview with a high level of awareness of the interrelatedness and sacredness of all living things. It is thought that such a universality of mind leads not only to intellectual illumination, but also to heightened moral sensibilities, compassion, and greater community responsibility”.

“The British Isles are home to just one percent of the world’s population and yet our small collection of rocks poking out of the north Atlantic has thrown up world beaters in virtually every field of human endeavour… Brian Cox”

Peers celebrate humanist contribution to British society – “Last week we watched as Parliamentarians in the House of Lords debated the contribution of humanists to British society. The debate was called by Lord Harrison, who is a member of the All Party Parliamentary Humanist Group (APPHG) and the British Humanist Association, and contributors included prominent humanists Baroness Whitaker, Lord Soley, Baroness Meacher, Lord Maxton, Viscount Craigavon, Baroness Massey and APPHG Chair Lord Warner. The debate gave Peers a chance to challenge the oft-repeated myths that only the religious contribute positively to society, as well as to celebrate our campaigning on public policy and ethical issues. They discussed the contributions of humanists and atheists over the decades to defending our democratic freedoms, by campaigning for free speech, secularism, women’s rights, LGBT rights, and an end to all religious privileges; humanists’ willingness (despite the misinformed image of ‘militant atheists’) to cooperate with religious groups on issues of common concern, such as on education issues; the work of humanist celebrants accredited by the BHA, who conduct ceremonies attended by over 250,000 people each year; and the work of humanists who provide pastoral support to the non-religious in institutions such as hospitals, prisons and universities. Lord Harrison commented on the fact that the number of non-religious people in the UK is on the increase (as shown by the 2011 Census and various other surveys), and that many of them have a humanist worldview. This means that Humanism is the default philosophical position for millions of people in the UK today. Lord Ahmad, responding on behalf of the government, mentioned the humanist contribution to charity volunteering, as well as the contribution of individual humanists to various secular charities which are supported by the religious and non-religious alike. The Bishop of Birmingham talked about the value of humanist funerals, the Church of England’s support of the move towards the legal recognition of humanist marriages, and celebrated the contribution of atheists and humanists to the common good”. Our write up of the debate can be found here, the transcript can be found here and the video can be viewed here (starting at 14:12:54).

Free – Bradley Manning: “The US soldier convicted of handing a trove of secret government documents to anti-secrecy website Wikileaks has been sentenced to 35 years in prison. Pte First Class Bradley Manning, 25, was convicted in July of 20 charges against him, including espionage. In a statement read by his lawyer after the sentencing, Pte Manning said he had acted “out of love for our country”. His supporters have called on President Barack Obama to pardon the soldier or commute his sentence to time served”

Zero Tolerance – hopefully: “Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem has said he rejects “utterly and completely” that Syrian government forces used chemical weapons. He was speaking in Damascus after the US said there was “undeniable” proof of a chemical attack”

“The Voyager-1 spacecraft has become the first manmade object to leave the Solar System. Scientists say the probe’s instruments indicate it has moved beyond the bubble of hot gas from our Sun and is now moving in the space between the stars. Launched in 1977, Voyager was sent initially to study the outer planets, but then just kept on going. Today, the veteran Nasa mission is almost 19 billion km (12 billion miles) from home”

Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2013

“From views of the Moon and our neighbours in the solar system, to colourful depictions of the gases and galaxies which swirl in deep space. Take a look at the best images – and see the overall winner – of this year’s Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition”

“The four-day siege involving suspected Islamist militants at Nairobi’s Westgate shopping centre is over, Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta says. Five attackers were shot dead by troops and 11 suspects were in custody, he said in a TV address to the nation. Kenya has “shamed and defeated our attackers” but the “losses are immense”, he said, confirming that 61 civilians and six soldiers had died”

Great to be a Pagan! “Historian Michael Wood returns to his first great love, the Anglo-Saxon world, to reveal the origins of our literary heritage. Focusing on Beowulf and drawing on other Anglo-Saxon classics, he traces the birth of English poetry back to the Dark Ages. Travelling across the British Isles from East Anglia to Scotland and with the help of Nobel prize-winning poet Seamus Heaney, actor Julian Glover, local historians and enthusiasts, he brings the story and language of this iconic poem to life”.  

British Humanist Association
Recent comments by a High Court Judge threaten freedom of speech – please help us protect the right to question and criticise religion and religious beliefs.Dear Member,Recently you would have received a pack from us explaining how vital it is we have the means to fight challenges to freedom of speech. If you are offended by charges of blasphemy sneaking in by the back door please do support our work today.‘Our message is simple: end religious privilege, not free speech. We must not allow religious censorship to sneak in by the back door.’ – Pavan Dhaliwal, BHA Head of Public AffairsDonate today to give us the means to challenge blasphemy by the back door.
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Consolidating The Arab Spring – A New (Youth) Revolution For Freedom – Turkey – Brazil – Egypt

“So why are the young not taking to the streets (properly; with great purpose, environmental…; should be : fighting for their economic place in the world, and  fighting against the unfair and corrupt democracies of the World)? A Neutered Generation –  They’re too busy trying to get by, argues Caroline Mortimer, a recent graduate, “We’re aware of the problems of an ageing population. But we can’t think about pensions and buying houses because we’ve got to get an actual job and pay the rent.” She argues that the notion of “respecting your elders” may also have blunted the desire to take on the baby boomers. And there’s still an attitude that young people are “ungrateful”, she believes. “Older people are worried about their own children but not other people’s kids” Time to kick arse, “We are currently in the longest depression – with the economy failing to recover to its previous peak level of output” – since before the 1920s And, “Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith (Conservative Party UK – nick-name, ‘the nasty party’) has insisted he knows what it is like to “live on the breadline”. The comment comes after 250,000 people signed a petition urging Mr Duncan Smith to try living on £53 a week” An Exception – Is this the, ‘New Training Ground For Youth in Turkey’ – Arab Spring? “One of Turkey’s big trade union groups is staging a two-day strike to support continuing anti-government protests in a number of cities. The left-wing Kesk trade union confederation, representing some 240,000 workers, accused the government of committing “state terror”. Protests and clashes with police continued into the night on Monday. A second death in the protests has been confirmed by the governor’s office in the southern city of Antakya. Abdullah Comert, 22, a member of the youth wing of the opposition Republican People’s Party, was “seriously wounded… after gunfire from an unidentified person,” the governor’s office said, adding that he died later in hospital” And, Brazil, “More than a million people are reported to have taken part in protests in about 100 cities across Brazil, the latest in a wave of anti-government rallies. Violence erupted in many places and an 18-year-old man died when a car drove through a barricade in Sao Paulo state. Protests began more than a week ago over high transport fares but are also highlighting corruption and the cost of next year’s football World Cup”

“The average middle-income family in Britain is likely to be nearly £1,800 a year worse-off by 2015, according to the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS). Families with two children will see a fall of £34 in their weekly incomes, after adjusting for inflation. A childless couple is likely to lose £1,248 a year, or £24 a week. The IFS also said that over the next three years, less well-off families will be hit harder than those with higher incomes. The cuts in spending power are because incomes are failing to keep pace with inflation, and because of changes to the benefits system” And, “A global super-rich elite had at least $21 trillion (£13tn) hidden in secret tax
havens by the end of 2010, according to a major study” And, “For £621 billion you could provide education, clean water and basic healthcare for millions of people around the world. That’s why the analysis we just released (which appeared in today’s Financial Times) is so shocking: never-before-seen data exposing plans by world leaders to spend $1 trillion (£621 billion) on nuclear weapons over the next 10 years” And, “Global Gullibility ‘For Dawkins, “Religious gullibility is not only an illustration of, but may be a precursor to, a more global form of gullibility. As he said, if you can believe, “Something as daft as the transubstantiation [then] you can believe anything”, and (witness the story of Doubting Thomas) these people are trained to see that as a virtue” (p. 141). “In other words, training children to accept nonsensical religious notions may predispose them to accept all kinds of other nonsense with a similar blind trust”  “Nothing is so fatal to religion as indifference, which is, at least, half infidelity” Edmund Burke (1728-1797). Ref: “Austerity is the new contagion, spreading across Europe. Today it enveloped Italy, with the government there telling the people to expect “heavy sacrifices”. pictures: State Opening of Parliament, London, GB, UK. Who owns Britain? This is a critique of both the landowning artistocracy and the Land Registry. Cahill argues that our present system of landownership is of material detriment to the vast majority of homeowners in the UK, while many of the wealthiest landowners in the country pay no rates and actually receive money in the form of grants and subsidies. (USA & Europe – not you, for this largemoney matter) “In 2012 Prince Charles earned more than £18 million from the Duchy of Cornwall, but how much do we know about this secretive estate? A Channel 4 Dispatches investigation reveals the scale of its hugely profitable property empire and looks at the amount of tax Prince Charles is paying. As the heir to the throne, Prince Charles inherited the Duchy of Cornwall: a vast array of farming, residential and commercial land and properties, as well as a multi-million-pound financial investment portfolio. Each year the duchy helps fund Prince Charles’ princely lifestyle. While the duchy’s public image is one of rolling countryside estates, organic farms and classical architecture and environment, some of its investments tell a rather different story. Reporter Antony Barnett takes a royal tour of some surprising properties that the duchy might prefer you not to know about. With the tax arrangements of wealthy individuals and major corporations making headline news, these Dispatches findings come as Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee prepares to launch its own inquiry into why, unlike other commercial businesses, the duchy does not pay corporation tax or capital gains tax” And,

The ‘old’ (USA’s), ‘Reds Under The Bed’, scenario – “US intelligence fugitive Edward Snowden has flown out of Hong Kong, the Chinese territory’s government has confirmed. The South China Morning Post quoted “credible sources” as saying he was due to arrive in Moscow on Sunday evening. It said Moscow would not be his final destination. Snowden, an intelligence analyst, fled to Hong Kong in May after revealing details of extensive internet and phone surveillance by the US National Security Agency (NSA)” (“The internet is a tool which contributes to the “progress of humankind as a whole” and should be available to all. In the final document [PDF] presented to the Human Rights Council this week, he concluded that the removal of an individual’s internet access should only take place in “few, exceptional and limited circumstances prescribed by human rights law” “Global interconnectedness is lethal against mass religion, nationalism, racism and other destructive memeplexes. Let us connect everybody: they hate it in restrictive regimes” from, Richard Brodie’s, designer of Microsoft Word, ‘learning group’)

Better News, “Dear Charles,

I’ve just come back from the G8 summit in Northern Ireland, and I’ve got some good news. Your campaigning has made real progress towards ending hunger for millions of children.

As part of the IF campaign, your actions made sure that hunger and the issues around it – like malnutrition, tax and land grabs – were on the agenda at the G8. This in itself is a big achievement. While there is still work to be done, we have seen important progress towards a future where every child has enough of the food they need.

On malnutrition: In the run-up to the G8, $4.1 billion was pledged towards ending malnutrition, one of the biggest killers of children worldwide. If delivered in full, this money could save the lives of 1.7 million children and protect a further 20 million from stunting.

On land: For the first time ever, land grabs were on the G8 agenda. World leaders agreed to set up pilot partnerships with developing countries to make buying, selling and owning land fairer.

On tax: All UK tax havens will now have to share information about the companies using them. This will directly benefit poor countries, by making it easier for them to collect the money they are owed – money that can be invested in preventing hunger and malnutrition. G8 leaders also agreed a tax deal that, while leaving some unfinished business, is a step in the right direction for tackling hunger.

Read my blog about being in Northern Ireland for the G8

Thank you for helping to make this happen. Since January you’ve rallied, emailed, lobbied, tweeted and shouted out loud until David Cameron and G8 leaders had to listen. For the 3 million children who die every year of malnutrition, this could be the turning point. We now need to ensure these promises are kept. We’ll keep you updated.

Thank you,

Hayley Cull
UNICEF UK Campaigns Team

‘New Humanist’, news letter – ‘Chief Rabbi claims ‘atheism has failed’ – “Last week Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks wrote in The Spectator that ‘future intellectual historians will look back with wonder at the strange phenomenon of seemingly intelligent secularists in the 21st century believing that if they could show that the first chapters of Genesis are not literally true, that the universe is more than 6,000 years old and there might be other explanations for rainbows than as a sign of God’s covenant after the flood, the whole of humanity’s religious beliefs would come tumbling down like a house of cards and we would be left with a serene world of rational non-believers getting on famously with one another.’ He argues that he has not ‘yet found a secular ethic capable of sustaining in the long run a society of strong communities and families on the one hand, altruism, virtue, self-restraint, honour, obligation and trust on the other.’ In comparison, last week we posted the video of Steven Pinker delivering out Voltaire Lecture on his book ‘The Better Angels of Our Nature: A History of Violence and Humanity.’ The lecture focussed on the effect of the civilising process, the advancements of the ideas of the enlightenment, and how Humanism, rational thought and secular philosophies have driven down the level of violence on every measurable scale. From the reduction of the frequency and scale of wars, to universal human rights including women’s rights, LGBT rights, children’s rights, the end of slavery, and even the animal rights movement, it has been secular philosophies and shared human values that are continuing to drive this civilising process. While Chief Rabbi Sacks says he has ‘not yet found a secular ethic capable of sustaining in the long run a society of strong communities and families’ he has either not looked hard enough or is ignoring 25% of the population that has said they have ‘no religion’ and yet manage to live peacefully and happily among their friends, neighbours, colleagues and loved ones” The Personal Answer – ‘There is also, however, a more personal answer, “Science tells us what we can know, but what we can know is little, and if we forget how much we cannot know, we become insensitive to many things of very great importance. Theology, on the other hand, induces a dogmatic belief that we have knowledge, where in fact we have ignorance (conjecture) and by doing so generates a kind of impertinent insolence towards the universe. Uncertainty, in the presence of vivid hopes and fears is painful but must be endured if we wish to live without the support of comforting fairy tales”.

Devout Nation’s – “UK PM David Cameron said he hoped to find “common ground” but Russia, which has already said it opposes US plans to arm rebels, said on Monday it would not allow a no-fly zone over Syria” (tribal/power madness, chemical weapons & 100,000 dead). Security in Northern Ireland is tight, as ever for the G8, which has been a magnet for protests in the past. A four-mile (6.5km) long, 3m-high metal fence surrounds the golf resort where the summit takes place. Some 8,000 police officers are being deployed for the summit” And, “The Turkish government has said it could use the army to end nearly three weeks of unrest by protesters in Istanbul and other cities. The government would use “all its powers” and the armed forces if necessary, Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc said on state-run television. It is the first time the Islamist-rooted ruling party has raised the prospect of deploying the armed forces. The issue is sensitive as the army is seen as a bastion of secularism”

“Egypt’s state prosecutor has issued an arrest warrant for the leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, Mohamed Badie, and at least nine other senior figures. Mr Badie is accused of inciting the violence in Cairo on Monday in which more than 50 people were killed. Many Brotherhood members are already in detention and warrants are said to have been been issued for hundreds more”

“A mouse-sized fossil from China has provided remarkable new insights into the origin of primates. At 55 million years old, it represents the earliest known member of this broad group of animals that includes humans. Scientists have called the diminutive creature Archicebus, which roughly translates as “ancient monkey”. They tell Nature magazine that its skeleton helps explain the branching that occurred at the very base of the primate evolutionary tree. The team puts Archicebus on the line leading to tarsiers, a collection of small arboreal animals now found exclusively in south-east Asia”

“This summer, the black hole at the centre of the Milky Way is getting ready to feast. A gas cloud three times the size of our planet has strayed within the gravitational reach of our nearest supermassive black hole. And across the globe, telescopes are being trained on the heart of our Milky Way galaxy, some 27,000 light years from Earth, in the expectation of observing this unique cosmic spectacle. For cosmic detectives across the Earth, it is a unique opportunity. For the first time in the history of science, they hope to observe in action the awesome spectacle of a feeding supermassive black hole”

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Earth Day

Earth Day. Does anyone (really) care, now?
Too busy, this guy got it about right, about us, including me, I am, so very sorry to say:  200+ years ago!
“Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers:
Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
The sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
The winds that will be howling at all hours,
And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
It moves us not; Great God! I’d rather be
A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn,
So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea,
Or hear old Triton blow his wreathed horn.”
William Wordsworth (1770-1850)

Best for us in the UK, HMRC, not to know, otherwise, we (the ‘general public’) will not want to pay our taxes, say, like in Italy or Greece. “The revelation of how little tax Google, Starbucks and Amazon have been paying on their global operations has triggered political indignation around the world and thrown fresh light on the aggressive techniques multi-national companies can use to slash their tax bills. More than lost tax is at stake.In this programme, Michael Robinson reports on the additional advantages aggressive tax avoidance can provide to multinationals. With sophisticated systems, shifting their profits to low-tax countries, these multinationals have a competitive edge over nationally-based companies whose tax bills are usually far harder to avoid. The result: more profit for the multinational and squeezed margins for the national competitor. And there’s more. With an effective tax-avoiding infrastructure in place, aggressive multinationals are better placed to compete for new markets or to buy up competitors in higher-tax countries – further extending their global reach. For governments around the world, many already facing slowdown and recession, such tax-avoidance powered competition is a disturbing danger. Because as a tax-avoiding company extends its operations, so a country’s revenues from corporate tax come under threat. While politicians around the world look for ways to cut back corporate tax avoidance, and with Prime Minister David Cameron promising the issue will be on the agenda when the G8 group of world leaders meet in Northern Ireland in June, this programme assesses their chances of reversing this global trend” The Dutch Tax Conduit (EU) (USA’s Interstate Tax – model for EU/UK tax policy, all States (26) have to agree, including UK for it to work. Prognosis, not all States will agree!

“Global Gullibility ‘For Dawkins, “Religious gullibility is not only an illustration of, but may be a precursor to, a more global form of gullibility. As he said, if you can believe, “Something as daft as the transubstantiation [then] you can believe anything”, and (witness the story of Doubting Thomas) these people are trained to see that as a virtue” (p. 141). In other words, training children to accept nonsensical religious notions may predispose them to accept all kinds of other nonsense with a similar blind trust.’ “Nothing is so fatal to religion as indifference, which is, at least, half infidelity” Edmund Burke (1728-1797).

“A global super-rich elite had at least $21 trillion (£13tn) hidden in secret tax
havens by the end of 2010, according to a major study” Oil Rich Arabs, and ‘others’ (below), ‘Muslims believed that gold and silver must circulate, and this circulation, called rawaj, was a social and religious duty. Hoarding gold and silver was forbidden by the Qur’an’: “Those who store up gold and silver and do not spend them in the way of God, tell them of a painful chastisement!” The cosmographer al-Qawini, writing only a decade or so after the minting of the first florin, says: “Gold is the noblest of the blessings of Almighty God upon his servants, for it is the foundation of the affairs of this world and brings order to the affairs of mankind…. With silver and gold coins, everything can be bought and sold. They must circulate, unlike other forms of wealth, for it is not desirable for anyone to accumulate silver and gold…. Anyone who stores them up destroys the wisdom created by God, just as if one imprisoned the qadi of a town and prevented him from carrying out his duties toward the people.” Wreck the Western Economies! Bullion sales hit record in rush to safety: And, ‘Peak Oil’! Oh Dear! “While HMRC is accused of sweetheart deals with Vodafone and Goldman Sachs – potentially short-changing the taxpayer by billions – HMRC is turning its attention to…cricket clubs”

“According to figures from Eurostat, the jobless rate ticked up to 12.2pc in April from 12.1pc in March, with the statistics office estimating that 19.4m people in the eurozone were unemployed in April. The highest increases were registered in Greece, Cyprus, Spain and Portugal. Separately on Friday, data showed that Italy’s jobless rate reached a 36-year high in April of 11.9pc. Those figures came as protestors from the so-called “Blockupy” anti-capitalism movement surrounded the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, where they are protesting against ECB debt policy, food price speculation and poor labour practices in the clothing industry. Fears that Europe is facing a ‘lost generation’ were underlined by the youth unemployment rate standing at 24.4pc in the eurozone during April. Almost two-thirds of youngsters are unemployed in Greece while more than half are jobless in Spain” And, UKIP – Nigel Farage, “A lot of uncomfortable, and no doubt, some very fat (living off the fat of the land) Euro bottoms”

“For £621 billion you could provide education, clean water and basic healthcare for millions of people around the world. That’s why the analysis we just released (which appeared in today’s Financial Times) is so shocking: never-before-seen data exposing plans by world leaders to spend $1 trillion (£621 billion) on nuclear weapons over the next 10 years”

‘World Leaders Dilemma’ – “The CIA-directed drone strikes are increasingly unpopular. In response, US President Barack Obama has brought targeted killings out of the shadows – but just a bit. On US soil, no American can be killed without due process, whether with “a drone, or a shotgun”, Mr Obama said on Thursday. For Americans living abroad “to wage war against America”, however, the situation is different. In his national security speech in Washington DC, Mr Obama said that an American overseas who was “actively plotting to kill US citizens”, as well as anyone else who posed a threat to US citizens, could be eliminated with a drone.

Predator drone on a runway Mr Obama says that drones, such as the Predator, are effective at fighting terrorists

The drone strikes are part of a legitimate campaign against terrorists – the killings are “legal” and “just”, he said” And, ‘A Threat, Really, Who says’? “The second-in-command of the Pakistani Taliban has been killed in a suspected US drone strike, a senior Taliban source told the BBC. The Pakistani Taliban (the threat?) leadership has not officially confirmed the death of Waliur Rehman so far. Earlier, Pakistani security officials said a local Taliban commander was among casualties in the raid. Missiles hit a house close to the town of Miranshah, in north-west Pakistan, early on Wednesday. The strike is the first for almost six weeks. It comes a week after President Barack Obama issued new guidelines for tighter scrutiny of the US drone programme and stricter targeting rules”

99% of species that have ever lived have become extinct, likely are humans; not that it bothers me, particularly, on a very personal level. It’s not science fiction, religious doctrine or a late-night conversation in the pub. There is no plausible moral case not to take it seriously. “Dr Bostrom says there is a real gap between the speed of technological advance and our understanding of its implications. We’re at the level of infants in moral responsibility, but with the technological capability of adults,” he says.

Big Debate – 7.5 million years ago, early human ‘savannah or aquatica’ evolution from forests: which one, or a bit of both? “Humans were living and thriving on open grassland in Africa as early as 2 million years ago, making stone tools and using them to butcher zebra and other animals. That’s according to powerful evidence from artefacts found at Kanjera South, an archaeological site in south-west Kenya. “There is no clear evidence of any hominin being associated with or foraging in open grassland prior to this 2-million-year-old site,” says Thomas Plummer of Queens College at the City University of New York. All of the other earlier hominins that have been found in the geological record – such as Ardipithecus ramidus and Australopithecus afarensis – known as Ardi and Lucy, respectively – lived either in dense forest or in a mosaic of woodland, shrub and grasses, says Plummer. The Kanjera South site now offers a glimpse into the lives of our ancestors as they were starting to adapt to life on the plains. “The site occurs in a grassland setting, dominated by grass-eating animals, and is thus the first clear evidence that grasslands were indeed part of the diversity of environments inhabited by early human tool-makers,” says team member Richard Potts of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington DC” And, “Abrupt climate change in Africa helped trigger technological and cultural advances in early modern humans, according to new research. Archaeologists had long noted that the complexity displayed by human groups moved in fits and starts. But there has been a debate about the causes of this stop-start pattern. Analysis of marine sediments suggest a close link between changes in human behaviour and changes in the southern African climate. The research by a British, Swiss and Spanish team is published in the journal Nature Communications”

“Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere have broken through a symbolic mark. Daily measurements of CO2 at a US government agency lab on Hawaii have topped 400 parts per million for the first time. The station, which sits on the Mauna Loa volcano, feeds its numbers into a continuous record of the concentration of the gas stretching back to 1958. The last time CO2 was regularly above 400ppm was three to five million years ago – before modern humans existed. Scientists say the climate back then was also considerably warmer than it is today” Ref, Climate Tipping Point (delayed Ice Age) Ref,^0%20Book/The%20Prehistoric%20Mind.%20How%20did%20Prehistoric%20Man%20Think.%20The%20Primitive%20Mind^2docx

The World’s People – poor – Same in: Europe, UK – USA, Russia, so on.., “Tax avoidance, secret mining deals and financial transfers are depriving Africa of the benefits of its resources boom, ex-UN chief Kofi Annan has said. Firms that shift profits to lower tax jurisdictions cost Africa $38bn (£25bn) a year, says a report produced by a panel he heads. “Africa loses twice as much money through these loopholes as it gets from donors,” Mr Annan told the BBC. It was like taking food off the tables of the poor, he said. The Africa Progress Report is released every May – produced by a panel of 10 prominent figures, including former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo and Graca Machel, the wife of South African ex-President Nelson Mandela” Too Late, “Finance ministers from the G7 group of industrialised nations are meeting, with global banking reforms and tax evasion on the agenda”

So near: ‘freedom from tyranny’: We need you to email your MP right now to support legal recognition for humanist marriages in England and Wales. On Monday and Tuesday next week, MPs will be debating the Marriage Bill currently before Parliament. Its main purpose is to extend marriage to same-sex couples but also being debated will be an amendment to give legal recognition to humanist marriages in England and Wales.
Humanist marriages have had legal recognition in Scotland since 2005 and this has led to a great increase in public knowledge of Humanism and non-religious approaches to life in Scotland in that time, as well as giving non-religious couples the option of a wedding ceremony that allows them full expression of their own personal beliefs and values, conducted by a celebrant who they know shares them. Last year, almost 3000 couples had a humanist marriage in Scotland – overtaking the number of Roman Catholic marriages and on course to overtake the Church of Scotland by 2014. Every year, the number of weddings conducted by our celebrants in England and Wales exceeds the number of many sorts of marriage that are legal (e.g. Quaker, Unitarian, or Jewish marriages) and we believe that legal recognition for humanist weddings is fair, rational and timely.
We urgently need your help today. Although the government has said it is not against humanist marriages in principle, it is resisting the change. However, the vote will be a free one, which means MPs will make up their own minds on whether to support legal recognition for humanist marriages or not. We need MPs from all parties to support this move, and we need you to contact your MP today.

God in England is doing quite well: “The Church of England has criticised the conduct of Barclays in its annual report, after a year dogged by scandal and resignations at the bank. The church, which holds a small stake in Barclays, said the bank had “repeatedly let down society with its conduct” during 2012. It said it was now looking for a “fundamental turnaround in culture” at Barclays, which declined to comment. The Church of England has more than £5bn invested in the stock market Poor People “The gap between rich and poor widened more in the three years to 2010 than in the previous 12 years, the OECD group of industrialised nations has said. It says the richest 10% of society in the 33 OECD countries received 9.5 times that of the poorest in terms of income, up from nine times in 2007. Those with the biggest gaps included the US, Turkey, Mexico and Chile” Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby You have to wear a funny hat for £5 billion pounds!

“I accept Your Majesty as the sole source of ecclesiastical, spiritual and temporal power.” The oath of loyalty sworn by Church of England bishops1 The privileged church. 2 The case for disestablishment.  3 Who’s for and who’s against.  4 An alternative way: the American way.  5 The road to privilege – a short history of the Church of England.

Value of investment portfolio £5.2bn (2011)
Hedge fund investments 10% of total assets(2011)
Private equity 12% return on investments (2011)
Property, loans, short-term deposits £1.8bn
Return on endownment 9.7% (2012)
Annual investment income £177.8m
Central land holdings: 112,000 acres
Local land holdings: 129,000 acres (Financial Times estimate)  Nominal members (UK) 24M (Population 60.6m) Average weekly church attendance (UK) 1.1m
Average Sunday church attendance (UK) 944,000 (Average Catholic Church attendance 869,221)
Members worldwide 70M Church attenders worldwide 25M

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