This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

Comments by TheRationalizer

Go to: A lawsuit too far?

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 23 by TheRationalizer

Dan Dennett may enjoy overtly religious songs, but Dan Dennett is not 5 years old. Why do you think that Christian religious worship is mandatory in the UK for school children aged up to 11 but then after that it is not?

It does do harm. It was religious songs at school which planted the seeds in my mind which as an adult enabled me to find the whole god/Jesus concept plausible. I was not happy when my little girl came home singing My god is so big. Until then she knew nothing of religion, they aren't getting my baby!

Fri, 17 Aug 2012 17:56:40 UTC | #950964

Go to: A past Muslim . . . now an atheist in Pakistan

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 30 by TheRationalizer

CouncilOfExMuslims.com has many members in similar situations to your own. You might enjoy being able to speak your mind freely.

Tue, 14 Aug 2012 11:25:44 UTC | #950781

Go to: Scientific evidence proves why healers see the 'aura' of people

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 33 by TheRationalizer

Now all we need is scientific evidence for Deepak Chopra :)

Thu, 17 May 2012 12:01:37 UTC | #942012

Go to: Admitting you're an atheist while travelling in the Middle East

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 53 by TheRationalizer

I would respond "I am undecided, so I am learning Arabic so that I can read the Quran before making up my mind" - and then refuse to discuss religion completely.

Wed, 02 May 2012 11:02:27 UTC | #938978

Go to: Sidebar: Pastor’s loss of faith started with loss of hell

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by TheRationalizer

I wish atheists wouldn't use logos and other forms of symbolism. The whole point is that we are all individuals, free to find our own ways, and free to think what we like. When we start "congregating" under symbols we start to look like a cult.

Tue, 01 May 2012 08:58:39 UTC | #938598

Go to: Pell, Dawkins wage battle of belief

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by TheRationalizer

So now Richard Dawkins debates creationists?

Mon, 09 Apr 2012 15:53:42 UTC | #933367

Go to: NASA scientist denounces Quran astronomy miracle claims made in his name

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 11 by TheRationalizer

Do you have a URL?

Sun, 01 Apr 2012 16:40:07 UTC | #931684

Go to: NASA scientist denounces Quran astronomy miracle claims made in his name

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 9 by TheRationalizer

Invention of supernatural knowledge - i.e. acting as if you have a direct communication to Allah and can declare divine truths. That is why when commenting on the Quran the commentators will say "Allah knows best"

Inventing clever technological stuff is fine :)

Fri, 30 Mar 2012 20:14:03 UTC | #931420

Go to: NASA scientist denounces Quran astronomy miracle claims made in his name

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 7 by TheRationalizer

I'd just like to point out that Tom Armstrong told me it was his attendance of a talk by Richard Dawkins which helped to convince him that he should speak out.

Fri, 30 Mar 2012 14:59:44 UTC | #931364

Go to: NASA scientist denounces Quran astronomy miracle claims made in his name

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by TheRationalizer

bubbub, sounds like a good idea. I have written to a number of these websites, and many still have their false claims online - although I think some did take them down too.

I've been thanked by many Muslims for exposing these deceptions. They aren't allowed to "cover truth with untruth", and invention (biddah) is a sin too; so they were happy for me to point out that claims they were propagating were false and wrote to say they were going to stop.

Good result :)

Fri, 30 Mar 2012 14:55:20 UTC | #931363

Go to: BBC Asia Network discussion on Islam and evolution

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 19 by TheRationalizer

Comment 16 by ArabAtheist1 : I'm a medical student in Lebanon, and they teach evolution at the university that I'm at, and sadly islamic students simply reject evolution!

Do you have to keep quiet about it, or is it easy to be an atheist in Lebanon?

A member of staff at a UK university told me his university was having problems with gangs of Muslims threatening other Muslims for not conforming to their views.

Wed, 07 Dec 2011 08:49:19 UTC | #896392

Go to: BBC Asia Network discussion on Islam and evolution

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 15 by TheRationalizer

People can reconcile evolution with their religion if they wish. Their arguments are usually piss poor, but if that is enough to convince them to accept cold hard facts whilst holding onto an unfounded belief that is their choice.

The issue is with those who ignore the facts to cling to a fantasy.

Tue, 06 Dec 2011 14:58:37 UTC | #896172

Go to: BBC Asia Network discussion on Islam and evolution

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 3 by TheRationalizer

54 minutes on iplayer, 45 minutes on the downloadable mp3 :)

Fri, 02 Dec 2011 18:13:03 UTC | #895091

Go to: UPDATED: Muslim medical students boycotting lectures on evolution... because it 'clashes with the Koran'

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 39 by TheRationalizer

Worse still, Harun Yahya's "Collapse of evolution and fact of creation" tour was actually held in numerous colleges and universities throughout the United Kingdom.

A recording of one of these events recorded at Wolverhampton University can be heard in its entirety on my youtube channel

I also have a copy of the powerpoint presentation and accompanying script.

Mon, 28 Nov 2011 11:53:10 UTC | #893823

Go to: Naturally offensive

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 115 by TheRationalizer

Comment 97 by Pitchguest : Any chance you could give me a link?

One Two Three Four Five

Wed, 16 Nov 2011 16:59:21 UTC | #890766

Go to: Naturally offensive

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 114 by TheRationalizer

Comment 94 by tmaxwell83 : Prepare a bottle, it's not difficult.

Except that my baby wouldn't drink from a bottle no matter how much we tried, she would only take milk from a breast.

As for comparing breast feeding to taking a dump, that is the most ridiculous argument I have ever heard against breast feeding. Breast feeding does not smell out the whole room, it does not make a mess on your shoe when you tread in the wrong place, and it does not require a member of staff to clean up afterwards. It is a very discreet act both visually and audibly, you have to watch very closely to get even the smallest glimpse of breast.

I used to feel physically sick when I saw someone breast feeding, especially in an easting establishment, and especially when I myself was drinking milk. Then I had children of my own, my wife breast fed, and I realised it was one of the most beautiful things I had seen. In short, if you don't like it then it is YOU the problem lies with and not the mother, so get over it.

Wed, 16 Nov 2011 16:47:55 UTC | #890762

Go to: Miraculous events: how to argue with them?

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 52 by TheRationalizer

1: Keep a diary of every claim

2: Check out each claim of success thoroughly (was the before/after diagnosis confirmed medically etc)

3: Work out the hit/miss ratio

Wed, 16 Nov 2011 16:42:21 UTC | #890761

Go to: Naturally offensive

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 93 by TheRationalizer

@Pitchguest : The Quran itself tells Muslims that breasts should be covered, you don't need to go as far as resorting to Hadiths.

And on the subject of Hadiths, I could give you at least 4 from different companions which state that Muhammad ordered a woman to breast feed a male who had become an adult so that they would become unlawful for each other and then he could see her breastfeeding her baby.

So please don't conclude that this was all just the work of some dirty old sheikh.

Sat, 12 Nov 2011 08:24:14 UTC | #889614

Go to: Naturally offensive

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 80 by TheRationalizer

Comment 66 by lol mahmood : Let's try another example. If a teacher tells a pupil that they may not pray in school at any time, ever - even in private - for fear of offending atheists; are atheists to blame?

No, because atheists have no doctrine which unites us upon which we can claim to be insulted. On the subject of breastfeeding we can only be offended as individuals.

Comment 72 by Pitchguest : To proceed off-topic: Has it occured to you that it's utter bollocks? Because some old pervert sheikh decreed that women can avoid the 'sin' of meeting alone with another man by breastfeeding him, does not have to mean it's actually something that's written down and agreed on.

You might this interesting, and this, and this, and this, and this.

Unless of course the "old pervert sheikh" you were referring to was Muhammad?

Comment 72 by Pitchguest : In fact, I think I'll go with the former. Besides, this is from the hadith, no? The 'interpretations' that says women have to cover their whole body, wear a niqab and hijab and whatever, when the Qu'ran sanctions nothing of the sort -- the Qu'ran according to Muslims being 'the word of God'.

Wearing the Niqab/Hijab has NOTHING to do with a woman getting her breasts out. The Quran explicitly tells women to cover their chests.

Quran 24:31 - And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and be modest, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent, and to draw their veils over their bosoms, and not to reveal their adornment save to their own husbands or fathers or husbands' fathers, or their sons or their husbands' sons, or their brothers or their brothers' sons or sisters' sons, or their women, or their slaves, or male attendants who lack vigour, or children who know naught of women's nakedness. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment.

But the solution is simple, it is in the preceding verse:

Quran 24;30 - Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and be modest. That is purer for them. Lo! Allah is aware of what they do.

Comment 72 by Pitchguest : Also I tend to hold a considerable wide berth to anything written on Islam-Watch.

Although I think Islam Watch is deliberately misleading....nobody here actually mentioned that site. It seems you may have decided in advance that there is nothing in the religion to base this on and then concluded we must be ignorant enough to have read it on a site such as Islam Watch.

Given the evidence I have presented you with this is clearly not the case. In Islam it is NOT permitted for a woman to breast feed in public, and I very much doubt you will find a single mainstream madthab (school of thought) that permits it.

Fri, 11 Nov 2011 09:45:36 UTC | #889396

Go to: Naturally offensive

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 61 by TheRationalizer

Comment 60 by Pitchguest : Oh for fuck's sake, people. The nurse obviously had a knee-jerk reaction, probably because her supervisor has told her to do so in order to avoid a fuss. Which is obviously a response to religious sensibilities, OR a response to asssumed religious sensibilities. Either way, it was the nurse that was in the wrong.

Correct, the staff were in the wrong. I doubt there would have been such a reaction though if someone had not already complained on religious grounds. After all, how would someone that knows nothing about a religion possibly know that having a breast out in public would be a problem to adherents to that religion?

From my experience "pious" men were far more likely to sit and watch than they are likely to do what they are told to (lower their gaze) so I suspect it was only a minority of religious adherents that complained about breast feeding in the past.

The important question is though, if someone is offended on religious grounds by breast feeding why should anyone give a damn?

Thu, 10 Nov 2011 13:53:15 UTC | #889230

Go to: Maryam Namazie on "The Jinn and Tonic show"

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 10 by TheRationalizer

Comment 5 by bubbub : an ex-Muslim who taught Qur'anic Arabic

That's Hassan. He used to teach classical Arabic at Cat Steven's school in London....sorry "Yusuf Islam" before he apostatised. He contributes some really good videos on the CEMBAdmins channel on youtube. The guy who loves Islamic jurisprudence is Klingschor, he has an interesting channel too here.

Hopefully it will be an interesting show. I can't make it myself so I shall be watching the recording.

Thu, 10 Nov 2011 13:43:36 UTC | #889224

Go to: Naturally offensive

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 41 by TheRationalizer

It was a Birmingham hospital, the chances of meeting atheists, Muslims, and people who erroneously believe they are Christians is fairly equal - I can only assume that the word "other" meant something like "other than the religion I presume you (white mother not wearing a headscarf) adhere to."

Wed, 09 Nov 2011 13:20:55 UTC | #888939

Go to: If the Mother Teresa Cancer miracle were true

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 14 by TheRationalizer

If I am not mistaken the original miracle was "She was enshrouded in light" - despite protests from the camera man that it was simply because he had run out of film and then moved onto a "new kind" of film he hadn't tried before.

It has now morphed within decades to a "beam" of light that went into a cancer ridden woman and cured her over night? Just imagine how much such myths can evolve for a much more popular figure (like Jesus) over a longer time (approaching 100 years.)

Wow, and who said Christian mythology isn't based on evolving myths eh?

Sat, 15 Oct 2011 10:58:52 UTC | #881052

Go to: Pastor faces execution in Tehran for apostasy

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 60 by TheRationalizer

The unstoppable force (Islam) meets the immovable object (Christian faith), resulting in fatherless children.

I expect an atheist would have taken the shahada by now, then buggered off to some other country and recanted.

Thu, 29 Sep 2011 14:32:58 UTC | #876318

Go to: Frustration of a science teacher

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 10 by TheRationalizer

Science is confusing children, or children are confused about religion in light of facts? :)

I'd point out that religious education classes should be about educating children about religion, not convincing them that it is true. Just as your job is to educate them about scientific facts, and not pretending they do not exist.

As long as you never mention religion, and defer questions of a religious matter to the RE teacher you will be on stronger ground. Perhaps you could also point out that religion is never mentioned.

Fri, 23 Sep 2011 08:38:59 UTC | #874248

Go to: Prejudices

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 4 by TheRationalizer

I wonder if he meant the execution method?

I'd certainly prefer a bullet in the head than the gas chamber, lethal injection, or electric chair.

Fri, 23 Sep 2011 08:31:41 UTC | #874243

Go to: How to handle the God issue with my five-year-old son

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by TheRationalizer

Put on the cartoon Hercules!

Tell him "Those are all gods. You don't think Zeus is really throwing lightening do you?" Tell him that people used to think all those gods were real for no reason. Then tell him that different people still believe in lots of different gods for no reason.

Tell him that if you had a reason to believe in any gods you would, so if he hears anything good at school to make sure he tells you about it. Then when he tells you stuff don't tell him why he is wrong, but ask him leading questions which will make him think for himself and realise the claim is crap (teach him how to question everything and to think critically.)

Fri, 23 Sep 2011 08:29:14 UTC | #874241

Go to: 'Miracle babies' pastor to be extradited to Kenya

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 8 by TheRationalizer

Now, if the babies had had NO DNA then I'd have felt a little more inclined to believe his claim of a miracle :)

Thu, 22 Sep 2011 14:45:27 UTC | #873967

Go to: Is it OK for an atheist teacher to wear an Out Campaign pin in class? (USA)

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 19 by TheRationalizer

If nobody is wearing anything then I would abstain. If other people are wearing crosses, you object, and then nobody cares then you should wear one.

Wed, 21 Sep 2011 15:39:17 UTC | #873609

Go to: [UPDATE 9/14] AUDIO ADDED - Richard Dawkins talks about his new graphic science book

TheRationalizer's Avatar Jump to comment 6 by TheRationalizer

I received a notification this morning that my book has been shipped :)

Thu, 15 Sep 2011 15:25:02 UTC | #871167