New Atheism leaders and unhealthy lifestyles

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The prestigious Mayo Clinic found that that religious involvement and spirituality are associated with better physical health, mental health, health-related quality of life and other health outcomes.[1]

The term New Atheism, which first appeared in the November 2006 edition of Wired magazine, is frequently applied to a series of six best-selling books by five authors that appeared in the period between 2004–2008. These authors include Sam Harris, Daniel Dennett, Richard Dawkins, Victor J. Stenger and Christopher Hitchens.[2]

New Atheism is a form of militant atheism/antitheism.

Social science research indicates that antitheists score the highest among atheists when it comes to personality traits such as narcissism, dogmatism, and anger.[3][4] Furthermore, they scored lowest when it comes to agreeableness and positive relations with others.[3] See also: Atheism and anger

Using special text analysis software, the social psychologist Jonathan Haidt found that New Atheists very often wrote in dogmatic terms in their major works using words such as “always,” “never,” “certainly,” “every,” and “undeniable.”[4] Of the 75,000 words in Sam Harris's The End of Faith, 2.24% of them connote or are associated with certainty.[4] See also: Atheism and arrogance

There is a considerable amount of scientific evidence that suggests that theism is more conducive to mental and physical health than atheism (See:Atheism and health).[5]

The prestigious Mayo Clinic reported on December 11, 2001:

In an article also published in this issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, Mayo Clinic researchers reviewed published studies, meta-analyses, systematic reviews and subject reviews that examined the association between religious involvement and spirituality and physical health, mental health, health-related quality of life and other health outcomes.

The authors report a majority of the nearly 350 studies of physical health and 850 studies of mental health that have used religious and spiritual variables have found that religious involvement and spirituality are associated with better health outcomes.[1]

The Iona Institute reported:

A meta-analysis of all studies, both published and unpublished, relating to religious involvement and longevity was carried out in 2000. Forty-two studies were included, involving some 126,000 subjects. Active religious involvement increased the chance of living longer by some 29%, and participation in public religious practices, such as church attendance, increased the chance of living longer by 43%.[6]

New Atheism leadership and excess weight

See also: New Atheism leadership's problem with excess weight and Atheism and obesity

PZ Myers in 2006.

Obesity is positively associated with impulsiveness, lower self-discipline and neuroticism.[7] In addition, many people overeat in response to negative emotions such as depression, anger, anxiety and boredom.[8]

New Atheism is known for its vitriolic and irrational denunciations of Christianity.[9][10]

Although the New Atheist leaders claim to be pro-science, 3 out of 5 of these men have had issues with being overweight as can be seen HERE and HERE and HERE

The ex-atheist Richard Dawkins has publicly indicated that he is an agnostic (see: Richard Dawkins and agnosticism). Since Dawkins is an agnostic and not an atheist, this would mean that 3 out of 4 of the atheist founders of the New Atheism movement had excess weight issues.

For more information please see: Atheism and obesity.

According to medical science, there are a significant number of physical and mental health related problems associated with being overweight.

In the late 1990s, Dennet had coronary artery bypass surgery (coronary artery bypass surgery reroutes blood around clogged arteries to enhance blood flow and oxygen to the heart).[11][12] In 2003, a a video at Ted was published featuring an overweight Daniel Dennett. In 2013, a video embedded on a The Raw Story article featured an overweight Daniel Dennett.

PZ Myers

PZ Myers is also a leader within the New Atheism movement who is an associate professor of biology at the University of Minnesota at Morris. In addition, he has a blog entitled Pharyngula. Myers has had problems with being overweight as can be seen HERE and HERE and HERE.

In 2010, PZ Myers had health problems related to his heart.[13]

On June 1, 2011, Myers posted a picture of himself and others on his blog and Myers appeared to no longer have issues with being overweight.[14] However, on February 13, 2013, a video was posted to YouTube entitled, Is church harmful? and Myers appeared to have put on weight subsequent to his June 1, 2011 picture.[15] In addition, a picture taken in 2014 features an overweight PZ Myers.[16]

Given his biological training and the many effective methods of losing weight that medical science, nutritional science and exercise science offer, there is no reason why Myers needs to possess excess weight.

PZ Myers' ironic speech at the 2010 Global Atheist Convention

See also: Atheism and brain function

At the 2010 Global atheist Convention, an overweight PZ Myers likened belief in God to a brain infection plus made the blanket statement that religion makes people stupid and/or do stupid stupid things.[17] According to medical science, being overweight causes brain impairment.[18]

Unhealthy lifestyle of the late, new atheist Christopher Hitchens

Christopher Hitchens was a leader in the New Atheism movement. A picture of an overweight Christopher Hitchens can be found HERE (see also: Atheism and obesity).

Hitchen's heavy drinking and chain-smoking and esophageal cancer

Atheists and atheistic cultures often have significant problems with excess alcohol usage (For more information please see: Atheism and alcoholism).

Christopher Hitchens was known for having a history of heavy drinking and chain-smoking.[19][20] Christopher Hitchens was being treated for esophageal cancer likely caused by drinking and smoking up until his death on December 15, 2011.[21][22] Despite his esophageal cancer, when asked by interviewer Charlie Rose if in retrospect he would have engaged in heavy drinking and smoking knowing his present cancer condition, Hitchens said he think he would have done things the same.[20]

Hitchen's excess weight and increased risk of esophageal cancer

As noted above, Hitchens also had problems with being overweight during his life.[23] According to the National Cancer Institute, "obesity is associated with increased risks of cancers of the esophagus."[24]

Richard Dawkins, anger, chronic high blood pressure and recent stroke following a feminism/Islam controversy

Richard Dawkins
Richard Dawkins has encouraged his supporters to go beyond humorous ridicule.[25] He wrote, "I lately started to think that we need to go further: go beyond humorous ridicule, sharpen our barbs to a point where they really hurt."[25] See: Atheism and mockery

See also: Richard Dawkins' health and Richard Dawkins and anger and Atheism and anger and Richard Dawkins and medical science

According to Glenn Gandelman, MD, "A recent study indicates that angry men have higher blood pressure and increased risk of heart disease.[26] PubMed has numerous studies relating to anger and high blood pressure.[27][28]

Richard Dawkins has a reputation for being angry, aggressive and abrasive (see: Richard Dawkins and anger and Abrasiveness of Richard Dawkins). His demeanor cost him a large reduction in his amount of public influence (See: Richard Dawkins' loss of influence).

The National reported concerning Richard Dawkins:

There was a time when the British scientist Richard Dawkins was widely admired...

More recently, he has shifted his attention to religion and has become known as one of its fiercest opponents. His insistence on allowing for none of the shade and subtlety that characterise the works of scholars such as Karen Armstrong, author of acclaimed books on Islam and the history of the monotheistic religions, have offended and infuriated millions. But they also have thrilled his followers who wish all discussion of faith to be banished to the fringes of the public square.

Mr Dawkins has always been pugnacious. When I interviewed the philosopher Daniel Dennett, a professor at Tufts University and a fellow leading member of an atheist group that calls itself the Brights, he described himself as being the “good cop” to Mr Dawkins’s “bad cop”. Mr Dennett conceded: “Richard is so hostile and aggressive that he’s unsympathetic.”

But now, Mr Dawkins’s unwillingness to treat anyone who disagrees with him as though they had even half a functioning brain cell is putting off even his own supporters.

“Richard Dawkins, whatever happened to you?” read a recent headline in The Guardian, the British newspaper whose readers and staff are generally among the most sympathetic to him. What does it say when a home to some of the most ardent atheists wants Richard Dawkins, frankly, to put a sock in it?[29]

Christianity Today indicated about Richard Dawkins:

Some atheists have sought to distance themselves from Dawkins because they feel the combative way in which he argues against faith is doing more harm than good for the atheist cause.

Dawkins appears to care little about what others think about his approach, atheist or otherwise, as after all these years he's still gunning for the religious.

In his own eyes at least, "aggressive" would be too strong a term for his stinging attacks on faith.

"I'm not aggressive!" Dawkins exclaimed in last week's appearance at the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (University of Connecticut), when Dean Jeremy Teitelbaum asked him why he had come to take "quite an aggressive stand against God and promote atheism".

On second thoughts, "Well, perhaps I'm angry," he admitted, before dropping the pretences altogether and making clear what he thinks about anyone who teaches children anything other than his beliefs on evolution.[30]

As a result of the controversy relating to a Dawkins Twitter post about feminism/Islam, Dawkins was disinvited to speak at the 2016 Northeast Conference on Science and Skepticism (NCSS) (See: Feminists cause Richard Dawkins to be disinvited to skeptic conference).[31]

Dawkins said he was very upset about being disinvited to the conference.[31] After his disinvitation, Dawkins gave some news about his health condition after suffering a minor stroke and he mentioned that his doctors advised avoiding controversies due to his chronic high blood pressure.[32][33][34] In recent times Dawkins has been embroiled in a number of controversies involving the topics of feminism/Islam and he has faced a significant amount of criticism from his fellow skeptics/liberals (see: Richard Dawkins and women and Richard Dawkins and Islamophobia accusations).

The Religion New Service reported about Dawkins: "He said doctors 'keep advising me not to get involved in controversies and I am afraid I had to tell them that controversy — that not getting into controversies — is one of the things I am not particularly talented at.'"[34]

In 2013, Martin Robbins wrote in the New Statesman concerning the public persona of Dawkins: "Increasingly though, his public output resembles that of a man desperately grasping for attention and relevance..."[35]

Atheist Hemant Mehta reported about Dawkins' stroke and Dawkins' report that he had been once again invited to the conference:

It was the result of stress-related higher blood pressure, which he says he may have had as a result of recent controversy, including being booted from the NECSS conference. He added, however, that on February 5, he received a letter from conference organizers apologizing for disinviting him and asking him back to the conference.[36]

Despite the medical advice of his doctors, Dawkins had a very active Twitter presence before his minor stroke (with a number of Twitter controversies) and numerous public controversies (see: Richard Dawkins and medical science).[37]

Dawkins has accumulated over 30,400 Twitter tweets.[38] The Independent reported, "Dawkins also admitted he wasn't very good at managing Twitter and the strong reactions his posts tend to provoke. 'Twitter is very difficult medium to handle,' he said. 'I’m not much of a diplomat.'"[39] However, after his stroke, in May 2016, Dawkins gave up posting on Twitter for a while and the tweets that appeared in his name were done by his staff.[40]

In December 2016, Dawkins appears to have started to Tweet again despite his doctors warnings to avoid controversy (For example, he tweeted that Britain had become a "nasty little backwater" after the Brexit vote and his Tweet drew fierce criticism).[41][42][43]

In short, Dawkins repeatedly ignores the medical advice of his doctors.

On the morning of Richard Dawkins' stroke, Dawkins received a letter from the NCSS apologizing to Dawkins for his disinvitation and once again inviting him to speak at the conference.[44]

Debates raged over praying for Richard Dawkins health after his stroke.[45][46]

The Guardian reported that Dawkins is expected to have a full recovery or near full recovery from his stroke.[47]

Richard Dawkins, Charles Darwin and mentally caused illness

See also: Richard Dawkins, Darwin and psychogenic illness and Charles Darwin's illness

evolution darwin theory
Late in Charles Darwin's life, Darwin told the Duke of Argyll that he frequently had overwhelming thoughts that the natural world was the result of design.[48] In a letter to Asa Gray, Darwin confided: "...I am quite conscious that my speculations run quite beyond the bounds of true science."[49] See also: Question evolution! campaign

Charles Darwin and mentally caused illness

A psychogenic illness is one that originates in the mind or in mental condition.

For most of his adult life Charles Darwin suffered from very poor health (see: Charles Darwin's illness).[50] The 1992 New Encyclopedia Britannica stated that Darwin's illness was psychogenic in origin.[50] A 1997 article in the Journal of the American Medical Association declared concerning Darwin's illness that the "variable intensity of symptoms and chronic, prolonged course without physical deterioration also indicate that his illness was psychiatric." [51] In addition, a journal article in the American Journal of Medicine states that Darwin suffered from "psychoneurosis provoked and exaggerated by his evolutionary ideas".[52] The American Journal of Medicine article also stated that his Darwin's wife, Emma, greatly disapproved of his evolutionist ideas and "This, facsimile of public reaction, must have kept lively his anxiety and torment".[52]

According to medical journals Darwin suffered the following symptoms: palpitations, shortness of breathe ("air fatigues" ), light headedness ("head swimming" ), trembling, crying, dying sensations, abdominal distress, and depersonalization ("treading on air and vision"), nausea, severe vomiting, flatulence, alimentary canal pain, various forms of eruption of the skin, and nervous exhaustion.[53]

Late in Charles Darwin's life, Darwin told the Duke of Argyll that he frequently had overwhelming thoughts that the natural world was the result of design.[48] In a letter to Asa Gray, Darwin confided: "...I am quite conscious that my speculations run quite beyond the bounds of true science."[49]

Cult of personalities and Charles Darwin and Richard Dawkins

There is a cult of personality and type of religiosity currently surrounding Charles Darwin. Stephen Jay Gould wrote the following in 1978: ""... all theories [of natural selection] cite God in their support, and ... Darwin comes close to this status among evolutionary biologists ...".[54] In 2002, Michael White similarly wrote: "Of course today, for biologists, Darwin is second only to God, and for many he may rank still higher."[54]

Despite recently having a large loss of public influence (see: Richard Dawkins' loss of influence), Richard Dawkins also has a cult of personality which follows him (see: Richard Dawkins' cult of personality).

Dawkins is an extremely avid admirer of Charles Darwin

Dawkins is an extremely avid admirer of Charles Darwin and believes that Darwin was a genius who "had a big idea, arguably the most powerful idea ever."[55][56]

Dawkins indicates he may have suffered from stress/controversy induced illness

As noted above, the following applies to Richard Dawkins: Dawkins' doctors advised him to avoid controversy; he suffers from chronic high blood pressure; Dawkins believes his recent stroke may be stress related and may have been caused by a controversy with his fellow skeptics; and Dawkins' says he is not very good at avoiding controversies. See also: Richard Dawkins and anger

Irony of new atheists willfully engaging in poor health practices

See also: Atheist hypocrisy

According to the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, the new atheists "believe empirical science is the only (or at least the best) basis for genuine knowledge of the world, and they insist that a belief can be epistemically justified only if it is based on adequate evidence."[57]

Yet, in the examples given above, new atheists willfully violated the best health practices of such disciplines as medical science, nutritional science, exercise science and psychology, despite these health practices being widely advocated in the scientific literature and media.

The Bible and sound health practices

See also: The Bible and health

Sound advice in the New Testament concerning the power of forgiveness

Jesus Christ and Christendom have emphasized the important of forgiveness and in the last few decades mental health specialists have increasingly seen the importance of forgiveness to alleviate anger/depression/bitterness and other emotional problems within individuals.[58]

Modern medicine now realizes that obsessing with one's past is a big cause of psychiatric problems.[59] Jesus had the same insight 2000 years earlier: "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God."[60]

Mosaic law and sound health practices

The prophet Moses authored the book of Leviticus

Max Neuberger, writing in his "History of Medicine" states concerning the Mosaic laws:

The commands concern prophylaxis and suppression of epidemics, suppression of venereal disease and prostitution, care of the skin, baths,[17] food, housing and clothing, regulation of labour, sexual life, discipline of the people, etc. Many of these commands, such as Sabbath rest, circumcision, laws concerning food (interdiction of blood and pork), measures concerning menstruating and lying-in women, and those suffering from gonorrhoea, isolation of lepers, and hygiene of the camp, are, in view of the conditions of the climate, surprisingly rational.[61]

Millennia before germ theory was proposed in the late 19th century, Leviticus 15 mandated hygiene laws that included bathing, washing of clothing, destruction of contaminated pottery and washing of hands.[61]

Although leprosy is not as contagious as other infectious diseases, and some forms of it (such as tuberculoid or paucibacillary form are not contagious), Leviticus 13 and 14 set forth rules to prevent epidemics of this disease among the people of Israel. Western science did not catch up until, in 1663, such laws were introduced in America in an attempt to curb an outbreak of smallpox.

The Biblical laws concerning menstruation, including the setting apart of the menstruating woman and the prohibition on intimacy during menstruation, address health concerns that were not known to secular science until the 20th century.[61] Also, modern science has only very recently discovered that following such rules dramatically reduces the rate of illegitimacy.[62]

Bible's prohibition of homosexuality

Given the many diseases associated with homosexuality, the biblical prohibition against homosexuality is quite arguably one of the many examples where the Bible exhibited knowledge that was ahead of its time.

Jesus Christ, the apostles and the Mediterranean diet/Mosaic diet

Christ And The Rich Young Ruler by Heinrich Hofmann (1824–1911), 1889.

See also: Jesus Christ and the Mediterranean diet/Mosaic diet

In addition to the Mosaic diet, Jesus Christ ate a Mediterranean diet.[63]

The Mayo Clinic describes the Mediterranean diet thusly:

If you're looking for a heart-healthy eating plan, the Mediterranean diet might be right for you. The Mediterranean diet incorporates the basics of healthy eating — plus a splash of flavorful olive oil and perhaps even a glass of red wine — among other components characterizing the traditional cooking style of countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea.

Most healthy diets include fruits, vegetables, fish and whole grains, and limit unhealthy fats. While these parts of a healthy diet remain tried-and-true, subtle variations or differences in proportions of certain foods may make a difference in your risk of heart disease.

Benefits of the Mediterranean diet

Research has shown that the traditional Mediterranean diet reduces the risk of heart disease. In fact, an analysis of more than 1.5 million healthy adults demonstrated that following a Mediterranean diet was associated with a reduced risk of death from heart disease and cancer, as well as a reduced incidence of Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases...

The Mediterranean diet emphasizes:

  • Eating primarily plant-based foods, such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes and nuts
  • Replacing butter with healthy fats, such as olive oil
  • Using herbs and spices instead of salt to flavor foods
  • Limiting red meat to no more than a few times a month
  • Eating fish and poultry at least twice a week
  • Drinking red wine in moderation (optional)

The diet also recognizes the importance of being physically active, and enjoying meals with family and friends.[64]

In terms of physical activity, Jesus Christ worked in a carpenter shop until He was thirty years old. Jesus had no electric power tools as carpenters do today, but worked with hand tools made of iron. Then for about three years, Jesus was an itinerant preacher.[65]

Mosaic diet is a healthy diet in terms of weight management

For a large segment of their lives, the apostles of Jesus not only ate a Mediterranean diet, but ate according to the Mosaic dietary laws. The Mosaic dietary laws are in accordance with a healthy lifestyle in terms of weight management as evidenced by the fact that one looks at the pictures of modern Orthodox Jews, most have a healthy body weight (See: Google image search of the term "Orthodox Jews").

Jesus and the Mediterranean diet

The Christian Chuck Norris wrote in his article entitled Chuck Norris asks, 'What would Jesus eat?':

In his excellent book “What Would Jesus Eat?” Dr. Don Colbert does a great job of explaining what the Master would have eaten and drank during his day.

Colbert told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: “I thought I’d go back to the training manual – the Bible – and see what Jesus ate. Lo and behold, Jesus ate the healthiest diet ever developed, the Mediterranean diet.”[63]

Dr. David Macht, the Mosaic law and animal toxicity tests

Dr. David Macht

In 1953 Dr. David Macht, a Johns Hopkins researcher, conducted toxicity tests on many different kinds of animals and fish and concluded that the toxicity of Levitically "unclean" animals was higher than that of the "clean" animals, and that the correlation with the description in Leviticus was 100%.[66]

Macht's study in terms of classifying kosher and non-kosher animals matched the kosher classification performed by James W. Atz, Ph.D., Curator and Dean Bibliographer in the Department of Ichthyology of the American Museum of Natural History, NY, NY and Adjunct Professor of Biology, Graduate School of Arts and Science on New York University. Dr. Atz's list of kosher and non-kosher animals was published by the Orthodox Union in Kosher Guide and in the Orthodox Union Kosher Consumer Directory.[67] According to a list of kosher and non-kosher fish published by the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, deciding what fish have scales, in the Orthodox Jewish community, appears to involve semantics as scales which are not visible to the human eye or scales that cannot be removed without tearing the skin are not considered "scales" in terms of the Torah law for determining which fish are kosher. It appears that Jewish religious authorities do appeal to well known Torah commentators.[68] Also, Dr. Macht's classification of swans as kosher is in accordance with the research done at Ohr Somayach Institutions in Jerusalem, Israel.[69]

Furthermore, Dr. Macht states in the peer reviewed journal Science that the toxicology test he used was a reliable method for detecting zoological toxins as it was a toxicology test sensitive to these type of toxins, and therefore one could conclude it was also suitable for testing the toxicity levels of fish, meat, and poultry.[70] (The toxicological method that Dr. Macht used was also cited in the Journal of Laboratory and Clinical Medicine.[71]) In addition, Dr. Macht was an expert in cobra venom, which is a zoological toxin. Macht's conclusions, however, were challenged by three of his science community peers in a Seventh Day Adventist publication although one partially affirmed his study.[72] This was partly due to a likely unfamiliarity with what food is kosher and non-kosher. Also, perhaps they were unfamiliar with the toxicity test Dr. Macht used, and its apparent effectiveness in testing zoological toxins.

In the short term, eating non-kosher food often appears to have no dramatic ill effects in general. For example, the Arabs, who do not eat kosher, consider camel to be a delicacy. Clearly, non-kosher Arabs do not fall dead right after eating camel meat. However, the long term optimality of eating clean versus unclean meat is an unanswered question of science. Also, eating non-kosher foods clearly has some nutritional benefit. For example, shrimp and pork contain protein. The New Testament declares,

For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer. 1_Timothy 4:4-5 (NKJV)

In regard to the aforementioned verse, it could be argued that prayer does sanctify food. The Bible has plenty of verses regarding God's protection. Also, it could be argued that the benefits outweigh the costs in all foods and thus all food is good. Clearly there is some nutritional goodness in foods that the Torah declared unclean (for example, shrimp has protein). What foods are optimal from an empirically tested science viewpoint is often controversial. In short, in regard to eating strictly a kosher diet versus a non-kosher diet, science has no definitive answers at the present time. From a Christian theological point of view, it could be argued that food should not be an impediment to anyone making a decision to become a Christian. It should be noted that orthodox Christian believers in Biblical scientific foreknowledge believe that Christians can eat the food that was declared unclean in the Old Testament, and 1_Timothy 4:4-5 and Galations 2:7-16 make this very clear.

In addition to the aforementioned study testing kosher and non-kosher foods for toxicity levels, Macht developed evidence indicating that combining meat and milk tended to be more toxic than either foodstuff alone.[73] In addition, he compared conventional animal slaughtering versus kosher slaughtering and determined that kosher slaughtering produced less toxic meat.[73]

A 1985 study by Nanji and French found that there was a significant correlation between cirrhosis and pork consumption (Macht claimed that swine was more toxic than the animal meat the Bible called clean).[74] Modern pork production methods are different from ancient methods of raising pigs, so the result of this study might be hard to apply to the ancients or those who raise pigs by organic farming methods, without the use of hormones or antiobiotics.

Jane Cahill reported in Biblical Archaeological Review that the toilets of a Jewish household in Jerusalem were examined and no parasites or infectious agents were found.[75]

Sam Harris

Sam Harris is an atheist author and neuroscientist.

Harris's father came from a Quaker background (Quankers are pacifists) and his mother is Jewish. Harris claims his upbringing was completely secular and religion was rarely discussed in the household.[76]

Sam Harris has a more amiable disposition than Richard Dawkins and PZ Myers. The theism apologist Vox Day said of Sam Harris, "Now, I don't dislike Sam. Unlike Dawkins and Myers, I don't think he's an intrinsically dreadful individual."[77]

Although he is certainly younger than his fellow new atheists founders, he does practice a healthier lifestyle and has appeared to have escaped the ill-health that many of the other new atheism founders have suffered.

Harris practices martial arts and unlike many Western atheists, he practices meditation. In addition, he has a wry sense of humor.

According to Scientific American:

Several studies have revealed that people who practice meditation or have prayed for many years exhibit increased activity and have more brain tissue in their frontal lobes, regions associated with attention and reward, as compared with people who do not meditate or pray.[78]

See also: Religiosity and larger frontal lobes and Atheism and the brain

Atheist Greta Christina wrote at the website Humananist.com:

A lot of atheists, humanists, and other nonbelievers are leery or dismissive of meditation and mindfulness. Some see it as an irretrievably religious or spiritual practice, and want no part in it. Others are put off by the faddish, overused, buzzword quality of the practice and the terminology. And I can understand that. For years, I stayed away from trying this stuff out, for exactly those reasons. I was interested in the practice—I had friends who did it, and who seemed to get a lot out of it. But I couldn’t find anyplace to learn that didn’t base their teaching on Buddhism or some other religion. And I’m too ardent an anti-religionist to “take what you need and leave the rest,” the way many nonbelievers do with religion. After all, I literally wrote the book on angry atheism. For me, trying to learn meditation in a Buddhist center would be like trying to learn meditation in a room full of fingernails scraping on blackboards.[79]

Although many atheists in the Western World are reluctant to meditate, in the East nontheist Buddhists often practice meditation.[80]

See also

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Mueller, Dr. Paul S. et al. (December 2001). "Religious involvement, spirituality, and medicine: implications for clinical practice". Mayo Clinic Proceedings vol. 76:12, pp. 1225-1235. Retrieved from Mayo Clinic Proceedings website on July 20, 2014.
  2. http://www.colorado.edu/philosophy/vstenger/battle.html
  3. 3.0 3.1 Science Shows New Atheists to be Mean and Closed-Minded
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Why Sam Harris is Unlikely to Change his Mind by JONATHAN HAIDT, February 3, 2014 8:36 pm
  5. Multiple references:
  6. Multiple references:
  7. http://leadercall.com/features/x1593289728/Angry-Atheists
  8. http://blog.christianitytoday.com/ctliveblog/archives/2007/07/the_new_new_ath.html
  9. http://www.edge.org/3rd_culture/dennett06/dennett06_index.html
  10. http://www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=4484
  11. http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2010/08/thats_not_a_heart_its_a_flaili.php?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+scienceblogs%2Fpharyngula+%28Pharyngula%29&utm_content=Google+Reader
  12. http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/06/the_final_tally_on_the_camp_qu.php
  13. Is church harmful? - Michael & Rhonda Jones, PZ Myers, Published on Feb 10, 2013 by YouTube account kaine diatheke
  14. PZ Myers, FCD, Maureen Brian, FCD, & Richard Carter, FCD
  15. PZ Myers - Global Atheist Convention 2010
  16. http://www.counterpunch.org/mccarthy02212003.html
  17. 20.0 20.1 Christopher Hitchens: Despite Cancer, I'd Drink & Smoke Again
  18. http://ac360.blogs.cnn.com/2010/08/07/video-extended-interview-hitchens-on-cancer-and-atheism/
  19. Why did Hitchens continue to smoke & drink during treatment? -CTV News
  20. Picture of an overweight Christopher Hitchens smoking a cigarette
  21. National Institute of Health - Obesity and Cancer Risk
  22. 25.0 25.1 Dawkins: Mock them. Ridicule them! In public
  23. Anger, Stress and High Blood Pressure, Glenn Gandelman, MD, MPH
  24. PubMed - Anger and hypertension
  25. PubMed: Anger and high blood pressure
  26. Richard Dawkins has gone so far, he’s lost even his atheist friends, The National
  27. Richard Dawkins: I'm not aggressive about God...perhaps just angry
  28. 31.0 31.1 An update on Richard Dawkins condition in his own words
  29. An update on Richard’s condition in his own words, Richarddawkins.net
  30. Richard Dawkins Said He Was Stressed by Controversy Over Tweet Before Stroke, Christian Post, February, 2016
  31. 34.0 34.1 Richard Dawkins says stroke caused by stress over controversy, Religion New Service
  32. Atheism is maturing, and it will leave Richard Dawkins behind
  33. Richard Dawkins Gives Update on His Health in Audio Message
  34. Richard Dawkins Twitter
  35. Richard Dawkins defends Ahmed Mohamed comments and dismisses Islamophobia as a 'non-word'
  36. Dawkins: I’ve Given Up Twitter.
  37. Richard Dawkins: England becoming a 'nasty little backwater' after Brexit vote, The Telegraph, March 2017
  38. SHOCK RANT: Richard Dawkins mocks Christians for 'pretending' there's WAR on Christianity, Express, December of 2016
  39. What British Scientist Dawkins Thinks Of Islam, Swaraya, June 7, 2017
  40. Richard Dawkins Said He Was Stressed by Controversy Over Tweet Before Stroke, Christian Post
  41. Debate rages over praying for atheist Richard Dawkins after stroke
  42. Richard Dawkins: Church of England denies 'trolling' biologist by sending 'prayers' following minor stroke
  43. Richard Dawkins stroke forces delay of Australia and New Zealand tour, The Guardian, February 11, 2016
  44. 48.0 48.1 http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/teleological-arguments/notes.html
  45. 49.0 49.1 http://www.darwinproject.ac.uk/entry-2109
  46. 50.0 50.1 http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v17/i4/darwins_illness.asp
  47. Charles Darwin and Panic Disorder" by Thomas J. Barloon, MD and Russel Noyes, Jr., January 8, 1997 Journal of the American Medical Association
  48. 52.0 52.1 "The Illness of Charles Darwin", William B. Bean, September 1978, American Journal of Medicine
  49. "The Illness of Charles Darwin", William B. Bean, September 1978, American Journal of Medicine and "Charles Darwin and Panic Disorder" by Thomas J. Barloon, MD and Russel Noyes, Jr., January 8, 1997 Journal of the American Medical Association
  50. 54.0 54.1 http://www.bradburyac.mistral.co.uk/dar1.html
  51. Why Darwin matters by Richard Dawkins, The Guardian
  52. The three-part television documentary The Genius of Charles Darwin was written and presented by Richard Dawkins
  53. The New Atheists
  54. Indian J Psychiatry. 2009 Apr-Jun; 51(2): 153–156. doi: 10.4103/0019-5545.49459, PMCID: PMC2755173, Forgiveness: A note for psychiatrists by Prakash Gangdev
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