Friday, August 15, 2008

Quotes and Musings, on Saturday

I have added several new blocks of text at the bottom in the left column. I really think you will find them interesting, valuable, perhaps new to you, and decidedly dedicated to naturalism, objective thinking, and human freedoms.

Besides "The Phrase of the Week," which is really just meant as a curiosity to introduce readers to ideas they have not heard of before (so some of them might appear to be very obscure--or very basic,) I've added some blocks of history in education, philosophy of religion, and other subjects which will make good reading. I will change these as I see fit, but as I see fit right now, they are a perfect juxtaposition from the philosophy of naturalism to educated ideas that promote the value of the human being, and contribute to each of us achieving that state of "Man qua Man."

There is a block "ON SECULAR EDUCATION" by John Stuart Mill; a block on "Sex Between Humans and Gods," by the American Patriot Thomas Paine; a block on "Free Will and Naturalism," by Kelley L. Ross, Ph.D ; and because so many Yahoo Answers readers want to know what "time" is, (though by the tone of some of the questions you just know the questioner is as skeptical that time exists as he is that he himself exists,) called "Consciousness, Reality and Time," by Professor Alek Samarin.

Even though the viewer counter I choose never showed up on this page (I'm not a geek; I can't understand RSS urls and things like how to put a counter on the page!), still, Google tells me in my account how many hits this page has had, and I must say I appreciate everyone of them. I only wish that some of you would comment so I knew what you were thinking, but I hate allowing comments to be put directly on the site without my reading them first, because then I get arguments, straw men, hate messages, irrational ranting, etc. I know that if someone takes the time to click on the link to this email address, that he or she has the constitution to write a logical, rational rebuttal or the knowledge to correct me where I've been wrong, or just to comment one way or another. So the "comments" button won't be coming up on this site anytime soon.

But Saturday is the day I've chosen to lay back and take it easy, posting my own offhand comments, or more than likely some of my (new!) "favorite" quotes from other people. If you're interested in whose quotes I used last week, they are listed under "Blog Archive" for the previous week.

BTW, if you have noticed, there is a link to PHILO, The Center for Inquiry, and Purdue U. at the top of the left column of this page. There are lots of links that might astonish you. Check them out. And while you're at it, click on some of the Google ads that have to do with Naturalism, or Atheism, etc. You'll be be helping me pay my bills! Or click on the pretty, animated ad for Turner Movie Classics. I'm broke.

If you have followed my week-long series based on Dr. Quentin Smith's paper published in PHILO, on the subject of "uninformed vs. informed naturalists," then you will understand why I'm not energetic enough to comment on anything today.

Each of those daily blogs took me approximately four hours of research and writing and editing for format (the appearance, the look,) of the blog. How many online blogs have you read that provide all the necessary links to the websites from which the information came? I want each of you to be able to judge whether or not I "appropriately appropriated" the copyrighted materials of others under fair usage and according to whether or not I was on the mark with the material I used: was it properly supportive of my own ideas? was I creating straw man arguments? did I "appropriate" too much to make a point, or would you have liked me to use more, in order to make my own case as tight as possible?

At any rate, the authors and the holders of the copyrights I appropriate under fair usage deserve--legally and ethically--to have their material linked. And several editors and publishers have given me outright carte blanche to appropriate as much material as I need or want, so long as I give the credit where it is due.

"Dear Curtis,

Many thanks for writing, I’ve put you on our newsletter list. I’m glad to know that you self-identify as a naturalist and we’ll be happy to help in any way we can. You can use and distribute anything at Naturalism.Org and Centerfornaturalism.Org, just cite the source.

I certainly encourage you to promote naturalism using all possible means – talking with co-workers, friends and family, giving talks, writing op-eds and articles. I look forward to collaborating in making naturalism better known as a worldview.

Best regards,
Tom Clark
Thomas W. Clark, DirectorCenter for Naturalism
Encountering Naturalism: A Worldview and Its Uses "

Thank you, Tom. We are not related, tho our last names are the same. I've never met Tom. I've never spoken to Tom. Tom and I have each written only one email to each other. But this is the kind of response that people in our field are willing to give to each other.

Dr. Quentin Smith lives right here in my home town and I've met and spoken with him. I wrote him an email about my week-long series, but he never got it. I sent it to the general email address of the Western Michigan University philosophy department, and yesterday when I went there to ask the Dr. what he thought of how I had handled his paper, not only was he not there, but the department secretary said her own volunteer had been absent and had not forwarded the email! But I did manage to get another professor, someone who's bio and photo are not yet up on the WMU website to promise to take a look at this site. I hope he shows it to Dr. Smith. I hope he shows it to the whole staff and to any students who are interested in Naturalism, or in whatever else the young professor may find interesing here.

I almost want to say his name was Professor Philo, but that would be too convenient. It only reminds me of "philo." At any rate, Professor, thank you for promising to at least look at my site, and my deepest apologies for having a short term memory loss.

A friend of mine who owns a 50,000+ sq. ft. building suitable for a convention, and I, are hatching the first big idea for the Academy of Metaphysical Naturalism. It will probably happen before the Academy begins offering unaccredited courses. I've been looking at several courses that are well regarded in both academic and non-academic circles. But it is not just a matter of finding the right material to advance Naturalism, or to advance the epistemic integrity of bringing secularism back into the field. It is a matter of find the right professors who can work long distance with students who are not in a formal classroom on a formal campus. It also requries hiring a webmaster who can put the package of online learning into the kind of internet superhighway of academic learning that I envision for the Academy.

Oh yeah, did I leave you hanging up there, about the "first big idea" of a convention? I'm going to have to continue to leave you hanging because the whole idea is only a week old, barely old enough to be debatable as to its possibility, let alone as to its probability. Sorry.

Tomorrow is Sunday, the day I take off from my postings. I'm going to an AA picnic today (there is a link to AA International on here, also, if you have not noticed.) It's supposed to be a bright, warm, wonderful day under the naturalistic sun on the naturalistic turf of a large county park on a beautiful and large naturalistic lake. But I just broke one of my smaller toes. I may have a hard time walking tomorrow. It's the same toe I broke a year ago. I limped in my shoes for a month.

So I hope you all have as wonderful a weekend as I'm going to have, and I'll see you Monday with another blog, the subject of which I have no idea yet as to its subject. I'm worn out from thinking about this week's subject, and the many hours it takes to write and publish it, not only here but on my Yahoo 360 profile , and on Scribd.

Suggestions for topic are welcome, as well as suggestions for the "Phrase (or Word) of the Week." And you are welcome to send original material, as this blog points out in approximately 20 different places.

Until Monday, then, Best Wishes that the naturalist events of the cosmos work to your advantage.


"All my life I have tried to pluck a thistle and plant a flower wherever the flower would grow in thought and mind." Abraham Lincoln

"All men are prepared to accomplish the incredible if their ideals are threatened." Maya Angelou

"All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence." Martin Luther King, Jr.

"As our enemies have found we can reason like men, so now let us show them we can fight like men also." Thomas Jefferson

"A baby is an alimentary canal with a loud voice at one end and no responsibility at the other." Ronald Reagan

"There's no half-singing in the shower, you're either a rock star or an opera diva.
Josh Groban quotes

"Bart, with $10,000, we'd be millionaires! We could buy all kinds of useful things!" Homer J Simpson.

"I'm an excellent housekeeper. Every time I get a divorce, I keep the house." Zsa Zsa Gabor ibid

"Programming today is a race between software engineers striving to build bigger and better idiot-proof programs, and the Universe trying to produce bigger and better idiots. So far, the Universe is winning." Rich Cook ibid

"When I was kidnapped, my parents snapped into action. They rented out my room." Woody Allen ibid

"Catch a man a fish, and you can sell it to him. Teach a man to fish, and you ruin a wonderful business opportunity." - Karl Marx (What--Capitalism from the king of Marxism? WTF?)

"The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing. If you can fake that, you've got it made."
Groucho Marx (1890-1977)

"No man or woman who tries to pursue an ideal in his or her own way is without enemies."
Daisy Bates (1863-1951)

"The most important service rendered by the press and the magazines is that of educating people to approach printed matter with distrust." Samuel Butler (1612-1680)

"Blessed is the man who, having nothing to say, abstains from giving us wordy evidence of the fact." George Eliot [Mary Ann Evans] (1819-1880)

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