James Randi is a Canadian stage magician who is famous for investigating claims of paranormal and exposing pseudoscience. He founded the James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) which investigates paranormal claims and pseudoscience and does related research.
He received multiple awards including Joseph A. Burton Forum Award from American Physical Society and Philip J. Klass Award, and he was twice featured in the Guinness World Records. The asteroid 3163 Randi discovered in 1981 by astronomer Charles T. Kowal is named in honor of James Randi.
View on religion
Although Randi is a scathing critic of the New age movement, he is a prominent atheist and equally virulent critic of religion. In his essay Why I Deny Religion, How Silly and Fantastic It Is, and Why I'm a Dedicated and Vociferous Bright, he critiqued religion and claimed religion is the cause behind many major tragedies of humanity. He writes:
|“||We find religion in so much of our history, our philosophy, our everyday lives, and our legal system. Miscegenation was banned based on Biblical rules, slavery was justified by the same book.||”|
JREF is a leading atheist activist organisaztion and is behind the annual atheist TAM conferences held around the world. Although JREF has lost some of its prestige in the atheist community over the last couple of years, Randi himself is universally admired and respected by the likes of Richard Dawkins, PZ Myers and Penn Jillette
- Patricia Orwen, The Amazing Randi, Toronto Star, August 23, 1986
- Why I Deny Religion, How Silly and Fantastic It Is, and Why I'm a Dedicated and Vociferous Bright.