Thursday, March 15, we have inspiring and intellectual guests lined up who will treat us to a smorgasbord of food for thought.
1st Hour: Bill Lauritzen – The Invention of God.
What do the roots of the Hindu religion, the Judeo-Christian religion, Islam, the ancient Egyptian religion and even early science have in common?
Scientist, mathematician, philosopher and, as Sir Arthur C. Clarke coined him — “some kind of genius” — Bill Lauritzen has traced the logical origins of gods in his fascinating new book, The Invention of God: The Natural Origins of Mythology & Religion.
Lauritzen meticulously correlates geological text and the ancient myths to form the argument that creation stories and the gods that ruled them have their genesis in an ancient view of volcanoes. Angels were lava bombs. Steams of lava became snakes. Blood and oxygen were observed to be life-giving, eventually leading to religious ritual and the notion of eternal souls.
The Invention of God transforms religious texts, mythology and early philosophy into an exciting discovery about humankind’s journey in understanding the world and life itself. Lauritzen's work covers eastern and western religions, philosophy and early science. In fact, before they became two different disciplines, he notes that in early human history, religion and proto-science were one and the same, writing:
Scientists do not like to be reminded that they owe a debt to mythology and religion. They are like teenagers who are embarrassed to be seen with their parents. They want their parents to drop them off a block before the gym where the school dance is being held. Scientists want to dance with the public and not acknowledge the debt they owe to the past to the shamans, medicine men, alchemists, spiritualists, and priests.
Pyramids, the alleged spaceships of the Bhagavatam, and even “Judgment Day” takes on a new meaning when viewed under the lens of geology.
William Lauritzen is a distinguished graduate of the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. His first two years at the Academy, besides the extensive military and physical training, he studied algebra and trigonometry, analytic geometry, calculus, engineering, law, astronomy, philosophy, ethics, comparative religion, astrodynamics, electrical engineering, chemistry, aeronautical engineering, psychology, anthropology, history, Russian, US history, world history, military history, air power and 20th century warfare, statistics, mechanics, biology, human physiology, political science, physics, space flight, economics, and art.
His second two years at the Academy he received a B.S. in psychology and graduated near the top 1% of his class. He was named "The Outstanding Graduate" in both psychology and philosophy.
The Air Force then sent him to an accelerated program to get a master’s degree in industrial and organizational psychology at Purdue. At the age of 22, he received a master's degree in Industrial Psychology from Purdue, specializing in Human Engineering Design. He was assigned to design and evaluate cockpits for jet aircraft, which he did for two years.
He wrote a paper on the Buckminsterfullerence molecule in 1994. This paper resulted in him being invited to a conference where he met Harry Kroto and Richard Smalley, the two discoverers of the molecule, and who two years later shared the Nobel Prize for this. He has created several innovative designs and insightful articles which combine cognitive science, mathematics, geometry, geodesic domes, archeology, anthropology, geology, oceanography, education, ancient Egypt, economics, and other subjects.
His designs include a new way of presenting and teaching the English alphabet (still under development), a new number system (a base-12 color-coded number system with new symbols), an educational word game (still under development), and Spacehenge.
Lauritzen teaches summers for the Center for Talented Youth of Johns Hopkins University. He lives in Los Angeles and New Mexico.
Show Time: Thursday night, March 15, 2012, 6 Pacific / 7 Mountain / 8 Central / 9 Eastern / GMT=Friday, March 9 @ 2 AM
Call-In Number: 914-338-0452
To hear the show live and participate in the web-based chat room: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/god-discussion/2012/03/16/bill-lauritzen–the-invention-of-god
More info about time zones, the chat room, archive downloads and hosts: The God Discussion Show
2nd Hour: Joe Zamecki – Atheists Helping the Homeless.
Atheists Helping the Homeless was founded in September of 2009 in Austin, Texas by three proud Atheists who wanted to help people in need. Not only was Austin becoming the homeless Mecca of the state, but a lot of preaching at the homeless was going on. The three researched the situation at I-35 at 7th Street on Sundays, and found that not only was there a lot of help there for homeless people, but it had become something of a big long church service. Atheists Helping the Homeless volunteers joined the scene at I-35 to fill a need that was not being addressed enough – providing toiletries and other non-perishable goods. The help, of course, comes without a sermon.
The group focuses and accomplishes three goals:
- Helping people in need;
- Proving by example that Atheists care and help; and
- Having fun with lots of good people.
2nd Hour: The Movers and Shakers of AtheismTV.
Atheism TV is an educational channel dedicated to promoting rational thinking, defending the separation of church and state, and providing support for atheists worldwide.
A talented, dedicated team of news writers, graphic artists, video editors, and news anchors from around the world have joined together to produce AtheismTV, a thoughtful yet entertaining broadcast on YouTube that covers up-to-date news about the erosion of separation of church and state, issues affecting atheists, and oddities from the world of religion. Additional videos can be found on the AtheismTV website.
The folks at AtheismTV will join us to share their vision and goals, and we’ll also talk about trends that we have been seeing worldwide in religious news.
To hear the show live, visit BlogTalk Radio. It will play out of your computer speakers. Archives are available via iTunes and BlogTalk Radio. Just scroll to the bottom of this or any other page on GodDiscussion.com and and click the BlogTalk widget. Calls are always welcome. To participate in the chat room, you'll need to get a free username from BlogTalk Radio.