The reading list
“When a moth flies at night, it uses the moon and the stars to steer a straight path. Those light sources are fixed and distant, so the rays always strike the moth's multilensed eyes at the same angle, making them reliable for nocturnal navigation. But introduce something else bright—a candle, say, or a campfire—and there will be trouble. The light radiates outward, confusing the moth and causing it to spiral ever closer to the blaze until the insect meets a fiery end.
“For years Richard Dawkins has used the self-immolation of moths to explain
religion. The example can be found in his 2006 best seller, 'The God Delusion,' and it's been repeated in speeches and debates, interviews and blog posts. Moths didn't evolve to commit suicide; that's an unfortunate byproduct of other adaptations. In much the same way, the thinking goes, human beings embrace religion for unrelated cognitive reasons. We evolved to search for patterns in nature, so perhaps that's why we imagine patterns in religious texts. Instead of being guided by the light, we fly into the flames.
“The implication — that religion is basically malevolent, that it 'poisons everything, is a standard assertion of the New Atheists. Their argument isn't just that there is no God, or that intelligent design is laughable bunk, or that the Bible is far from inerrant. It's that religion is obviously bad for human beings, condemning them to ignorance, subservience, and endless conflict, and we would be better off without it.
“But would we?”
“From “Dusting Off God” at chronicle.com
What causes gray or green discoloration in some boiled eggs?
Wisdom of the ages
“If there is no knowledge, there is no understanding; if there is no understanding, there is no knowledge.” – The Talmud
“The White House sinks a little bit lower. This is what an angry and desperate presidency looks like.” — Mitt Romney, criticizing Vice President Joe Biden for telling an audience in southern Virginia that included hundreds of black voters that Romney wanted to put them “back in chains.”
Iron and sulphur compounds that accumulate when the eggs are overcooked.
Now you know
A fan does not cool air but increases air circulation over skin, which speeds evaporation of moisture and makes one feel cooler.
fallow (FAL-oh), adj. – not in use; inactive, as in: “The editorial writer had covered so many council meetings that his brain had gone fallow.”
Today in history
On this date in 1894, Congress created the Bureau of Immigration; say, wonder what those folks are doing today?