Archive for July 2nd, 2019

What I Gained When I Lost My Religion

2019/07/02

(Patheos::Godless in Dixie) – Neil Carter:

People often ask me if my life is better now that I’ve left my religion. My honest answer is that it’s a mixed bag. …

Once you rule out how some have behaved toward me because of my unbelief, I have to say that in many ways I am enjoying life in ways that I couldn’t before.

Eleven Things That Got Better:

  1. Peace of mind …
  2. A rediscovery of a love of learning …
  3. The ability to accept people I formerly judged …
  4. Less judgement toward myself…for some things …
  5. I give credit where credit is due, both to others and to myself. …
  6. Getting Sunday mornings back …
  7. Better health …
  8. Better sex …
  9. Friends who are more fun …
  10. More realistic expectations about life …
  11. A greater appreciation for the preciousness of life …

godlessindixie what-i-gained

Mitchell Stephens: Imagine There's No Heaven: How Atheism Helped Create the Modern World

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Life Among the Dwarfs

2019/07/02

(Discover Blogs::Out There) – Corey S. Powell:

When I was an astronomy-obsessed kid, I learned that most of the stars in our galaxy and beyond are very similar to our Sun. No less an authority than Carl Sagan wrote that “the Sun is an ordinary, even a mediocre star.” If that insight diminished the importance of our place in the universe, it also made it seem likely that there must be many other living worlds around us. If the Sun is a typical star, couldn’t the Earth be a typical planet?

Except that Sagan was wrong, or at least misleading. More than 90 percent of the stars in the Milky Way are cooler and dimmer than the Sun. A full three-fourths are red dwarfs, the smallest of the small. Furthermore, dwarf stars seem to be especially likely to have rocky planets. Together, those statistics indicate that there are a trillion planets around red dwarfs in our galaxy, including at least 100 billion potentially habitable Earth-size worlds. The big unknown is whether those planets are actually habitable — that is, if the genuinely typical Earth-size worlds out there are really anything at all like our own.

The exciting news is that we’re not going to have to wait long to find out. …

outthere dwarf-stars

Red dwarf Proxima Centauri