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Comments by labman

Go to: Moral Clarity and Richard Dawkins

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 17 by labman does this prove there is a god?? -Actually I gave up reading: load of rubbish.

Tue, 22 May 2012 13:42:00 UTC | #942821

Go to: Human Societies Starting to Resemble Ant Colonies

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 11 by labman

But, ants don t have Religion.

Sun, 06 May 2012 14:28:36 UTC | #940164

Go to: The God issue: New science of religion

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by labman

Although I have no plans to read any of these NS articles (should I?), I have to ask: is there something seriously wrong with the New Scientist?

Tue, 20 Mar 2012 14:06:23 UTC | #928941

Go to: Melvyn Bragg attacks Richard Dawkins' 'atheist fundamentalism'

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 52 by labman

I am surprised and disappointed in Melvyn Bragg, especially as he claims to be "not religious". He should feature the Origins of Religion in some of his programmes as he appears to be lacking much information. However I believe him to be basically an arts man.
De Botton should not be classified with Richard.

Wed, 14 Mar 2012 15:53:28 UTC | #926984

Go to: Christopher Hitchens obituaries

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by labman

I hope he knew how much we cared.

Fri, 16 Dec 2011 10:05:11 UTC | #899600

Go to: No to Religious Indoctrination

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 11 by labman

Living near Chelmsford I wish I had known about this beforehand.

Mon, 28 Nov 2011 15:11:28 UTC | #893879

Go to: Women & Islam: The rise and rise of the convert

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 42 by labman

I am horrified to read this; and we have met with this before. Why? why? It raises more questions. How much does the "fashion statement" come into it? In some cases low self esteem must come into it, but that must result in a further lowering in practice. Given that these women have had a reasonable education why would they allow it then to be dumbed down ,viz science? Apart from the situation of having a Muslim partner what is wrong with our society that makes them choose this path? Surely there are other avenues to fulfillment - is it then a lack of imagination? In the 60s, with the hippies etc. we saw the rise of Western Bhuddism, is this a similarity? Why not Politics? Yoga? .....Birdwatching? Are we,here, in fact, doing enough to promote our beliefs? to promote secularism and science at grass roots level. I know Richard et al are leading the way, but should we "evangelise" more?

Sun, 06 Nov 2011 16:48:02 UTC | #887913

Go to: Mixed messages about music in Islam

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 11 by labman

Re DavidMcC @9.-

I do like some of the Sufi, qawwali, music of the late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan. Surely the Middle East has a long musical tradition?

Nowadays it appears that any one muslim can decide what is, or is not, allowed in Islam.

Wed, 21 Sep 2011 14:23:00 UTC | #873574

Go to: Leading bishop hits out at Dawkins for reducing ‘faith into ignorance’

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 26 by labman

It may be time to take the gloves off with the "faithful". Most of us recognise the inherent mythology of the Abrahamic religions. The ideas of Earl Doherty,and the DVD "The God that Wasn t There" have brought the myths to light more recently, however the writings of Acharya S (pen name of D.M. Murdoch), especially in her book "Suns of God" are extremely convincing. A highly detailed and well researched treatise on the origins of Christianity, arising from the extensions of earlier religious myths based on the worship of the Sun gods for at least thirty thousand years. The contiuum travels back through the gods of the Hebrews, Romans, Greeks, Babylonians, Egyptians (particularly Horus and Ra), Persians (Mithras), to the gods of India (Vishnu and Krishna) and Bhudda. The parallels are extremely convincing - from virgin births, annual religious dates from the solar equinoxes, to crucifixions. The outcome is a feeling that the modern church is a house of cards. I think we should publicise these ideas more.

-Jesus Christ: the last of the Sun gods.

Sat, 03 Sep 2011 14:51:26 UTC | #866912

Go to: 'Black Death' bacteria likely extinct, study finds

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 16 by labman

@ 14 esuther- There have been posts here on the recent article on RD dismissing the Black Rat as the animal vector. Although the 14th century plague killed off up to 50% of the population a proportion were resistant and recovered. Additionally some escaped it all together. Those of us whose pedigrees go back to those areas are all descendants from the survivors(!). Whether we are now immune or resistant is an entirely different matter.

Plague, as a disease, is still endemic in parts of the world - e.g California and SW USA. As previously stated my own preference as to the cause is a haemorrhagic virus but unlike the religionists I am open to current scientific knowledge!

Wed, 31 Aug 2011 13:34:44 UTC | #865873

Go to: Black Death study lets rats off the hook

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 30 by labman

@ Jonathan Dore.- Your dating would of course make all the difference. I do believe that the Plague outbreak of the 17th century was indeed due to Y. pestis.

Mon, 29 Aug 2011 20:10:29 UTC | #865284

Go to: Black Death study lets rats off the hook

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 27 by labman

@ Saganic Rites. I understand your arguement. I read that Iceland also suffered from the disease yet the black rat was not present there. I am trying to look at the bigger picture to question how much the flea was the only vector, or to what extent direct human - human was involved given the speed and distances the disease had travelled from its origin. I understand that fleas could have carried it within cloth from London, but at the same time I do believe that there was a steady spread, northwards, throughout Britain along the main travellers routes. In one year , November 1348 - November 1349 the whole of England and Ireland had been infected.

I am particulaly interested in what the actual disease the Black Death was as bubonic plague has become increasingly more unlikely. I should like to have visited your plague museum.

Mon, 29 Aug 2011 09:13:32 UTC | #865123

Go to: Black Death study lets rats off the hook

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 22 by labman

@- Saganic Rites. I personally have not heard of the cloth theory for the spreading, however we can consider certain facts that seem fairly certain. Firstly, there was not just the one wave of the Black Death (1348-49) but several after that. It appears to have arisen in the Far East, spreading into Asia Minor, where it was transfered to Europe via the trade routes, mainly the Mediterranean countries.England had reports and stories from travellers/sailors about the severity of the disease. And it was getting closer. The first outbreaks in England occured around the south coast ports and spread inland but particulaly towards London, following the main routes. Gradually it spread North but inconsistently affecting the main towns. Questions could be: Could fleas have carried the "bug" through the varying temperature zones from the Far East? How viable were the fleas on rats or humans throughout this journey? Human transfer was very quick,much more like a viral infection. Certainly the population was at a low ebb because of the failure of crops due to extreme bad weather in Britain - but this was not consistent throughout the countries from the Middle East. Your cloth theory is fine for local areas e.g Derbyshire but I think the spread rate was greater and did follow main travellers' routes. - It remains an intriguing and fascinating mystery!

Sun, 28 Aug 2011 22:32:51 UTC | #865014

Go to: Black Death study lets rats off the hook

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by labman

The controversy over the actual cause or causes of the Black Death is nothing new. This can be seen in the brief Appendix of Benedict Gummer's 2009 book " The Scourging Angel". The arguements include the facts that the black rat was insufficient in numbers and would not have travelled fast enough to match the spread. This is also true when comparing to more recent known outbreaks. Other causal suggestions have included anthrax, or a combination of diseases. My own favourite is a form of haemorrhagic fever (viral), akin to Ebola or similar. Needless to say if that were the case humans would be still at an equal risk if it should return! It is also of interest to note that populations regarded the Black Death as a punlshment from God for various "sins". To appease Him all sorts of self punishments and self scourging were endured, increasing in severity - but God wasn' t listening!

Sun, 28 Aug 2011 13:04:35 UTC | #864892

Go to: As atheists know, you can be good without God

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 14 by labman

Just by reading the comments to Jerry''s article on USA Today shows how necessary I believe it is to keep re enforcing the message on the origins of morality. The "old chestnut" arguements from the religionists keep appearing, and with them the indoctrinated younger generation need to hear the message too. This needs to be an ongoing thing just like plugging the description of Evolution. Unfortunately I think we have to start again with each generation.

Mon, 01 Aug 2011 14:24:46 UTC | #856596

Go to: A Current Scientific Thought Repository

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 49 by labman

I have often thought it would be useful to have a list of newly discovered examples of observable evolution in action ,as there appears to have been many recently. It would then be easier to counter the common claim that "you cannot see it happening". Having read these reports I usually forget them!

Tue, 12 Jul 2011 13:28:41 UTC | #848935

Go to: Guilty of the sin of anger

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 88 by labman

I agree with ZenDruid (Comment 30). -Richard, we all know of your (normally) extreme patience under dire conditions. I don t see that you should apologise. Just maybe your reaction would have made him stop and think. We can only hope so.

Mon, 02 May 2011 13:25:30 UTC | #622006

Go to: Richard Dawkins is the best argument for the existence of God

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 126 by labman

What happened to "the proof"? I was so looking forward to hearing it. Russell Brand :- grotesque.

Tue, 12 Apr 2011 13:31:49 UTC | #614488

Go to: Should creationism ever be taught in schools?

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 23 by labman


Mon, 28 Mar 2011 13:18:38 UTC | #608292

Go to: The end of the world - act now!

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 5 by labman

I thought Sarah Palin was planning on being Raptured, so why is she considering whether to run for President?

Sun, 20 Mar 2011 18:00:25 UTC | #605055

Go to: BBC2 - Questioning religious history, at last?

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 23 by labman

I really think that (non historical) Jesus is a conglomeration of myths arising from earlier Roman and Middle Eastern deity. A very interesting account on the historical veracity of Jesus can be found on This expands along the lines of Ignorant Amos' comment. I must try to look into the evidence for Muhammed. Anyone got any good leads?

Sat, 19 Mar 2011 15:12:31 UTC | #604717

Go to: FOURTH UPDATE: RD on Revelation TV

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 360 by labman

After all that we still don t have any evidence of the religionists' gods.

Mon, 14 Mar 2011 15:33:13 UTC | #602557

Go to: [Update 7-Mar - BBC] London imam's death threats for supporting evolution

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 45 by labman

"Muslims really have to move on as adults and intellectuals" ....!! - I don t think they will make it. The police must get involved in this case.

Mon, 07 Mar 2011 15:35:59 UTC | #599700

Go to: The Big Questions - Sunday

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by labman

I think "The Big Question" is an awful and biased programme! If I am feeling strong I do tie myself to the mast and try to watch it, but it always leaves me exasperated; and I dislike Nikki Campbell. Still, I will aim to watch it this week! Good Luck!

Thu, 24 Feb 2011 14:28:51 UTC | #595413

Go to: Religion must be in key school exam, insist faith leaders

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 38 by labman

The purpose of the introduction of the British Baccalaureate is to offset the continued fall in education standards in this country - the recognised dumbing down of our school exam standards.To add to the curriculum any form of religious studies would completely go against the objects of this exercise. We should be trying to boost the core subjects and not wasting precious learning time with irrelevants. As Rationalists we need to distance ourselves from any superstitious, supernatural topics for the purpose of this examination. This way we can start to reduce any importance the religionists are proposing in order to create a non religious outlook in society through tomorrows citizens. I am with Paula Kirby on this.

Sun, 23 Jan 2011 13:50:39 UTC | #582914

Go to: Long overdue: reasoning with family

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 76 by labman

Czar.Bernstein - Too much wordy crap.............Show us your EVIDENCE.

Mon, 06 Dec 2010 15:30:54 UTC | #559266

Go to: Billboard: "You Know It's a Myth"

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 40 by labman

"There is no such thing as bad publicity" -surely in this case this is true. For it IS a myth. If it helps the agnostic to feel that he or she she is not isloated in the land religion the message is a success. There is a need to keep up a continuous drip feed of atheist messages based on Reason.

Fri, 26 Nov 2010 15:36:31 UTC | #553609

Go to: Creating common grounds for (productive) discussion with the entrenched and indoctrinated.

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 19 by labman

I find all comments, or none, are feasible. All may help, but we are probably a superstitious Species - not having mentally evolved beyond the hold of superstition. Atheists are willing to overcome this by learning(?) - most of us have escaped from an earlier religious influence. Can we see evidence of superstition in the apes? Looking for a "protector" is extremely common in ape society. If humans can add a further evolved step of imagination to this do we get....prewired religion?

Mon, 08 Nov 2010 15:36:17 UTC | #544170

Go to: Christianity v. Mithraism: A valid comparison?

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 15 by labman

After two thousand years the precise origins of Christianity are obviously shrouded in a confusion of religious influences prevelant in an area meeting east (Persia,India) with west(Rome).It does not take long to adapt tales of heroes and villains - cf. Arthurian legends,Robin Hood,from much more recent times. Albeit from a Jewish standpoint there is a very convincing account on "The Myth of the Historical Veracity of Jesus" to be found on the website: Mithras is mentioned, but the emphasis is on a later, biblical, time. There is also another giving "The case against Historical Christ". How can the simple New Testament stories be accepted given that the variety of roots of the origin are so diverse, and easily researched?

Tue, 17 Aug 2010 15:45:41 UTC | #501446

Go to: Updated: Richard Dawkins is on BBC Radio 4's 'Broadcasting House' programme this Sunday, 10th January, approx 9.30 am GMT, the slot called 'Newspaper Review'

labman's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by labman

equalizerking -
We only want rationalists on this site. You are quite obviously psychotic.

Sat, 09 Jan 2010 10:05:00 UTC | #430402