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This week on Think Atheist Radio we have our chat with Mr. Matthew Hutson! Mr. Hutson uses his Bachelor of Science degree in Cognitive Neuroscience from Brown University and Master's in Science Writing from MIT to do just that: write about science. For 4 years ending in 2010 the News Editor of the excellent Psychology Today, he has seen his writing published in The New York Times, Wired, Discover, and Popular Mechanics, just to name a few. Mr. Hutson's recently published book, The 7 Laws of Magical Thinking, describes how evolved cognitive short cuts and biases produce our beliefs in magic and the supernatural. This is among the most interesting questions in cognitive science and the discussion is entered into here in a compelling way that pushes the reader from page to page. Join us!
Researchers report that people's positions on moral issues can be traced, in part, to differences in structure in their brains.
Steven Novella wrote this week on the nature and motivations behind conspiracy theory thinking.
Recent poll numbers motivated Adam Lee to refer to a coming atheist demographic tide.
The path taken by evolution to insect metamorphosis is fascinating.
Jerry Coyne continues examining sophisticated theology for answers to basic questions about God, faith, and religion. He finds Alvin Plantinga's justification of animal suffering lacking. Peter Van Inwagen's justification is empty as well.
American Atheists launched its new billboard campaign. The CFI's Ron Lindsay had some objections. Jeff Lowder of the Secular Outpost says the billboards don't speak for him as an American atheist, identifying what may be a contradiction in the billboards' message.
An article published in the Journal of Medical Ethics describes the belief on the part of some religious parents of terminally-ill children as bringing about conditions that are tantamount to torture for those children.
This video of the Kepler exoplanet candidates showing their scaled relative distance from a Sun-like star is incredible. It really brings home just how many planets we've found out there.
A new study reveals the existence of a significant population of atheists in the military.
Lots of pieces in the science media about a new study that is supposed to cast doubt on recent findings that Neanderthals and modern humans interbred. John Hawks explains why the new study shouldn't be taken seriously as casting doubt on those earlier recent findings.
Why do organisms build tissues they'll seemingly never use?
On the science of how, under what circumstances, and by which motivations we change our minds.
Simon Singh wrote this week to ask if famous "psychic" Sally Morgan is deluded but essentially harmless.
Jerry Coyne addresses a contentious piece appearing in the Chronicle of Higher Education about some opposition in academic circles to the New Atheism.
Here's a great infographic produced from survey data gathered by the evangelical polling organization The Barna Group that shows why women should want nothing to do with Christianity.
This funny post pokes fun at anti-science celebrity nutballs and their support for alternative medicine.
What the ratification battle and the reaction in the years afterward tells us about our godless constitution.
A teen with cancer has died when she was forced to wait too long for treatment owing to her being pregnant in the Dominican Republican, a country with a constitutional prohibition of abortion.
A new study complicates the question of how young children display a moral compass.
Thinking about the objectives of organized atheism.
On the new research linking thinking style to religious belief.
Plate tectonics, previously only observed on Earth, now on Mars too.
Where have all the cults gone? There were lots of new religious movements popping up throughout the 20th century. All that stopped around the 1990's. Why?
Alexander Ahn was arrested and sentenced to prison for 2 years for being open about his atheism on Facebook. There recently concluded a petition to the White House to get them to pressure the Indonesian government to free Ahn. That petition failed to net the signatures required to get the White House to respond to the petition. Now people are asking why the petition failed.
After a man walked into the Family Research Council's DC headquarters with the intent to shoot up the place (and did shoot a security guard) Hemant Mehta asked whether it's fair to label that anti-gay organization a "hate group" as the Southern Poverty Law Center has.
The Sun is the most perfect sphere observed in nature. The deviation from perfection the Sun displays is startling.
Scientology's detox programs are expensive, unproven, and dangerous.
Astrophysicists simulate 14 billion years of cosmic evolution in high resolution.
The science of ritual. Why we seek help and healing in repetition.
The Economist estimates the Catholic Church spent 171 billion 600 million dollars in 2010. Click through to see just how much they're estimated to have spent in charitable ventures.
An investigation into the differences between people's recollections of how religious they were as children and how religious they actually were shows some interesting results.
Recently Jerry Coyne described some things that he said would disprove evolution. Now T. Ryan Gregory takes a look at Coyne's assertions and as some questions about them.
With the bias in the fossil record it's incredible that we know even as much as we do about the history of life on Earth.