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← Beyond Belief 3: Candles in the Dark

Beyond Belief 3: Candles in the Dark - Comments

JFHalsey's Avatar Comment 1 by JFHalsey

Holy crap, when did Carl Sagan write "The Demon-Haunted World"? Seems rather prophetic, to me, if you'll excuse the religious metaphor.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 09:26:00 UTC | #253609

mdowe's Avatar Comment 2 by mdowe

Re: 1. Comment #267189 by JFHalsey

I was thinking the same thing ....

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 09:38:00 UTC | #253621

GBile's Avatar Comment 3 by GBile

In my copy of Sagans 'The demon-haunted world' it says: Copyright 1996.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 09:43:00 UTC | #253626

overwhelmedas1wouldB's Avatar Comment 4 by overwhelmedas1wouldB

You two must be joking. It was published in '96 and is a classic that everyone should read.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 09:46:00 UTC | #253628

Matt H.'s Avatar Comment 5 by Matt H.

I thought 'The Demon Haunted World' was Sagan's most well known book. It's not widely avaliable in the UK, except in libraries, but I heard it's still a big seller over in the US.

As for this conference, any word on the talks from Sir Harry Kroto, Lawrence Krauss and Michael Shermer? I've seen Sam Harris', but I was looking forward to watching theirs too.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 09:54:00 UTC | #253640

kryptoknightmare's Avatar Comment 6 by kryptoknightmare

I re-read The Demon-Haunted World over the summer, and I was astonished at how prophetic that section was. Sagan's "candle" was, of course, science itself- or perhaps more specifically, skeptical thinking through science education. Lets hope that the pendulum starts swinging towards that happy goal...

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 10:06:00 UTC | #253657

Jeff (HandyGeek) Handy's Avatar Comment 7 by Jeff (HandyGeek) Handy

Another must read by Sagan: Pale Blue Dot. It's been many years, but I recall having as much of a spiritual experience reading it as I ever had as a X'tian. In fact, I'll have to break that out for another read if I can find it.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 10:08:00 UTC | #253661

skip's Avatar Comment 8 by skip

The Science Network player does not work well at all, I may not make it through these videos this year, at least not like last year...

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 10:20:00 UTC | #253671

mbobo's Avatar Comment 9 by mbobo

We miss you Dr. Sagan...

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 10:37:00 UTC | #253686

apaeter's Avatar Comment 10 by apaeter

Is there any chance to get this videos mirrored somewhere or posted on GoogleVideo? The bandwidth on the sciencenetwork doesn't seem to be up to it. Some talks don't load all the way, etc... very frustrating. :) can someone help?

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 10:45:00 UTC | #253690

mintcheerios's Avatar Comment 11 by mintcheerios

The site isn't loading for me. It must be getting hammered.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 11:56:00 UTC | #253755

kev_s's Avatar Comment 12 by kev_s

I bought Demon Haunted World as a christening present for my god son. He's still not quite old enough to appreciate it but I hope will one day.
(It was not a very religious service and I had my fingers crossed behind my back the whole time.)

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:15:00 UTC | #253765

JemyM's Avatar Comment 13 by JemyM

omg omg omg omg
*jumping up and down like a teenage girl*

I didn't even know that BB3 had been... Now I know what to do the rest of the week.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:28:00 UTC | #253776

qomak's Avatar Comment 14 by qomak

Very nice videos.

As always, I really enjoy listening to Ramachandran.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:36:00 UTC | #253784

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 15 by NewEnglandBob

I watched the first two videos and then they were 'temporarily' pulled 'due to high traffic'

Talk about inflation...The first two years' DVDs are $40 each and the third year is $70.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:45:00 UTC | #253791

geru's Avatar Comment 17 by geru

Not enough bandwidth? C'mon, youtube 'em! Gimme gimme gimme! :)

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:56:00 UTC | #253805

Scandinavian07's Avatar Comment 16 by Scandinavian07

Made the Sam Harris speech into a mp3 for my jog.

Nothing puts up a good sweat like God bashing and wearing a magenta colored tracksuite from the 80's.

Anyways, uploaded it to rapidshare (not the best one, but ok) if anyone else wants it. Will do the same with Ramachandran if any1 is interested.


Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:56:00 UTC | #253804

KRKBAB's Avatar Comment 18 by KRKBAB

I can't believe how many people are unfamiliar with C. Sagan! Maybe he is/was more of an American phenomenon?
I think he's by far the most quotable of all of the populizers of science.
"Science isn't perfect, but it's the best we have."
"Who needs the supernatural, the natural is super enough!"-
dumbed down, oversimplified pure brilliant remarks
If people with limited intelligence like myself get all fired up when they read C.Sagan, then he was truely a GODSEND. (yes, pun intended)

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 12:58:00 UTC | #253807

rod-the-farmer's Avatar Comment 19 by rod-the-farmer

Perhaps Josh et al could provide advance notice to the owners of such sites that RD will be posting a link to it. This may allow them to ramp up whatever the limitation might be, OR, to post a copy on YouTube. We are all in this together.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 13:03:00 UTC | #253810

Simonw's Avatar Comment 21 by Simonw

I've just finished Demon Haunted World. I think my partner "tidied it up" (aka moved from bedside table to bookcase) when I was last reading it.

Have to say Sagan lacks a little in the critical thinking skills, but he writes well, and clearly has his head mostly screwed on.

The most important take home is I think that civilisations have had long periods of no progress, interspersed with comparatively short periods of enlightened thinking, and we shouldn't rely on the current relatively sane period (in the west) to continue, we have to make it continue by dint of effort. Otherwise they'll go back to spending all their money on Cathedrals, and the clergy, and we'll be in Ben Elton's Blind Faith.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 13:20:00 UTC | #253826

Yadsmood's Avatar Comment 20 by Yadsmood

Does Richard Dawkins intend to participate in the next Beyond Belief conference, if there is one? I hope he does. His insight and clarity of thinking could greatly contribute to the discussion -- even if it's centred around moral philosophy, as opposed to religion.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 13:20:00 UTC | #253825

NewEnglandBob's Avatar Comment 22 by NewEnglandBob

Comment #267389 by KRKBAB:

Unfortunately, Even though Sagan was enormously popular for "Cosmos" and other videos, they no longer get any air time in the US and therefore hardly anyone under 30 knows who he is.

"Pale Blue Dot" was a terrific book with wonderful pictures that few people know.

I remember when people walked around saying "billions and billions" sounding just like Sagan in pronunciation.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 13:24:00 UTC | #253828

Uhtred's Avatar Comment 23 by Uhtred

"Sagan lacks a little in critical thinking skills...??

You're joking, right Simonw?

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 13:30:00 UTC | #253835

LB's Avatar Comment 24 by LB

thanks for the mp3 Scandinavian07

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 14:01:00 UTC | #253860

RationalistHomeTchr's Avatar Comment 25 by RationalistHomeTchr

Carl Sagan was one of my heroes when I was in high school and college... There have been at least three times when Christian friends have asked me to read a book that will supposedly convince me to join their religion (and I've complied, by the way--I've read some *badly* argued books this way!); in each case, I've loaned them my copy of The Demon-Haunted World for them to read in exchange. Even those these were friends who said they really wanted to know where I'm coming from, and even though they agreed to read my book while I read theirs -- not on actually read more than a few pages!

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 14:58:00 UTC | #253925

Dhamma's Avatar Comment 26 by Dhamma


It's pretty likely they only read a few pages of your book as well :)

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 15:15:00 UTC | #253946

Scandinavian07's Avatar Comment 27 by Scandinavian07

Here's the Ramachandran speech in mp3.

Hope the videos are online again soon :(


Mon, 20 Oct 2008 15:35:00 UTC | #253960

Dr. Strangegod's Avatar Comment 28 by Dr. Strangegod

overwhelmedas1wouldB... when placed in my position? what a heavy burden now to be the one? but i forgot my pen...

My only concern, friend, is that Maynard and crew might be a little too into the New Age crap that comes along with Alex Grey and his work, though I am a huge fan of both the music and paintings.

As for the Sagan quote, yipes, I got chills reading that. And as annoying as it is to have the BB3 not working at the link given, it says a lot that there were more people interested in watching than they had expected. Good sign.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 16:54:00 UTC | #253992

Cluebot's Avatar Comment 29 by Cluebot

V.S. Ramachandran's talk was brilliant, as always. He reports a very surprising observation at the end regarding phantom limb patients and mirror neurons.

I've made a torrent of what's already appeared, for those who can't wait. Please seed to relieve my feeble connection:

The files are in Flash Video format. Windows users have a wide choice of tools to view these, including MPC-HC and VLC. Mac and Linux users can use VLC

The withdrawn content is not the complete event. They seemed to be releasing it in batches, which I've been downloading as they appeared.

The first Beyond Belief was on Google Video if I recall correctly. I've no idea why they changed...

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 18:59:00 UTC | #254016

Alberto.Jaume's Avatar Comment 30 by Alberto.Jaume

I am Mexican, I am 27 and I was able to watch Cosmos in VHS in the early 90's. I own the Series and I love to see them once and again. I was just 10 or 11 and it opened my eyes to the Universe. Carl Sagan will always be my personal hero. I have also read The Deamon Haunted World, blue plae dot, and other brilliant publications. In Mexico he is well known in some circles, and I love to introduce his books to people.

Mon, 20 Oct 2008 21:33:00 UTC | #254054