Atoms & Eden

Salon has up a series of interviews “about religion and science with today’s leading thinkers.” Good stuff, and I recommend Kevin Berger’s talk with Michael Shermer in particular:

“If you were born in India, you’d likely be a Hindu. What does that tell you? From a Christian perspective, it means we need to get more missionaries over there to tell them the truth! From an anthropological perspective, it’s another case. Christians today might say, I don’t believe in Zeus, that was a silly superstition. Yet for many people that was a real god.

So it turns out there are 10,000 gods and yet only one right one. That means we’re all atheists on 9,999 gods. The only difference between me and the believers is I’m an atheist on one more god.”

When I stopped using my high school’s lone general Internet account and got my very own email address in the mid-90’s, Shermer was one of the very first people to whom I sent electronic mail. Since then, he’s gone on to publish all kinds of books; I, on the other hand, still have trouble trying to make a passable omelet.

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