Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

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Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

Post  Imagine on Sun Dec 20, 2009 7:52 pm

Just a few books that I suggest reading!

Dawkins vs. Gould: Survival of the Fittest (Kim Sterelny)
The End of Faith (Sam Harris)
**Chariots of the Gods (Erich von Daniken)
The God Delusion (Richard Dawkins)


**Chariots of the Gods is, by far, my favorite non-fiction book of all times--definitely a great read for any of us open-minded enough to question missing links in evolution, and their place in history!


Amazon Product Review:
"Erich von Daniken's Chariots of the Gods is a work of monumental importance--the first book to introduce the shocking theory that ancient Earth had been visited by aliens. This world-famous bestseller has withstood the test of time, inspiring countless books and films, including the author's own popular sequel, The Eyes of the Sphinx. But here is where it all began--von Daniken's startling theories of our earliest encounters with alien worlds, based upon his lifelong studies of ancient ruins, lost cities, potential spaceports, and a myriad of hard scientific facts that point to extraterrestrial intervention in human history. Most incredible of all, however, is von Daniken's theory that we ourselves are the descendants of these galactic pioneers--and the archeological discoveries that prove it."

.:-Imagine-:.
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Re: Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

Post  Dont_Vote_Palin on Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:14 pm

I started the God Delusion about two months ago, and I'm already on page 14. I be pro.
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Re: Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

Post  eccles on Tue Jun 15, 2010 7:14 pm

Chariots of the Gods (Erich von Daniken)

You must be joking. I am an amateur Astronomer and I study Archaeology. I got sucked in by this fraud, von Danekin in 1968 when that book came out. I bought more of his books and saw his movie.

Eric von Daniken has been thoroughly debunked by all responsible scientists. Like many biblical "archaeologists" who start out with preconcieved ideas and dig with a spade in one hand and a bible in the other hand, von Daniken is no better. His conclusions are crap. I am Australian and know about Aboriginal Art and the Dreamtime. There is now way any of the artifacts can be said to be Aliens in space helmets.

I do believe there is life all throughout the Universe, but the claims made by von Danekin and UFO believers are outrageous and an insult to anyone with any intelligence.

Chariots of the Gods is as bad fiction as the "Holy" Bible.
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von Danekin a Fraud

Post  eccles on Tue Jun 15, 2010 8:04 pm

A few scientists, such as Carl Sagan and I. S. Shklovskii, have written about Däniken's paleocontact and extraterrestrial visitation claims. Although Sagan did not rule out the possibility of visitation, he insisted that "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence", which Däniken fails to provide. [4]

Däniken claimed that a non-rusting iron pillar in India was evidence of extraterrestrial influence.[5] Later, Däniken admitted in a Playboy interview that the pillar was actually rusty and man-made, and that as far as supporting his hypotheses goes "we can forget about this iron thing."[6]

Some also question von Däniken's credibility, as he has also knowingly put forward fraudulent evidence to advance his hypotheses, such as photographs of pottery "depicting UFOs", supposedly from an archaeological dig dating back to the biblical era. The PBS television series Nova determined that this was a fraud, and even located the potter who made them. When confronted with this evidence, von Däniken argued that the deception was justified because some people would only believe his theories if they saw actual proof.[7]

In The Gold of the Gods von Daniken claimed to have been guided through artificial tunnels under Ecuador containing gold, strange statues and a library with metal tablets, which he wrote was evidence of ancient space visitors. The man who he claimed showed him these alleged tunnels, Juan Moricz, told Der Spiegel that all of von Daniken's descriptions came from a long conversation and that the photos in the book had been 'fiddled'. Von Daniken eventually told Playboy that although he had seen the library and other places he'd described, he had also fabricated some of the events to add interest to his book.[8]

Most historians regard Däniken's claims as pseudoscience, and are of the opinion that he is drawing far-reaching conclusions from little evidence, and he is disregarding more likely alternative hypotheses, but a large group of followers, some of whom have written books of their own, are of the opinion that his theories are likely to be true.

The general public, however, has sometimes been more responsive. Däniken's books have been translated into 32 languages, with a gross book sales of 62 million copies worldwide, and his documentary TV-shows have been viewed in Germany, the United States, and other countries. His influence can also be seen in science fiction, the New Age culture and some modern religions like Scientology.

Some have accused Däniken of European ethnocentrism[9] and suggested that views such as his "constitute the ultimate in racism".[10]

Ronald Story published The Space Gods Revealed in 1976, providing an almost page-by-page refutation of the hypotheses and evidence in Däniken's Chariots of the Gods?.

A 2004 article in Skeptic Magazine[11] states that Däniken plagiarized many of the book's concepts from Le Matin des Magiciens, that this book in turn was heavily influenced by the Cthulhu Mythos, and that the core of the ancient astronaut theory originates in H. P. Lovecraft's short stories "The Call of Cthulhu" written in 1926, and "At the Mountains of Madness" written in 1931.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erich_von_D%C3%A4niken
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Re: Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

Post  Clint on Tue Jul 13, 2010 2:11 pm

Eccles, I don't know if this review is of your own or not, but it's very well put together!

Fantastic critical analysis :-) This whole aliens visiting earth nonsense is a vestigial remnant of the Cold war. Unfortunately too many people bought into it.

As for Imagine's book recommendations.
- 10/10 for Richard Dawkins The God Delusion. Exposes elegantly the stupidity of mainstream theistic belief's.
- While on subject of Dawkins, also I recommend his latest "The Greatest Show on Earth"!! It's absolutely fantastic if your interested in science. You'll appreciate natures beauty and complexity ten fold after you've finished reading it.
- Sam Harris's The End of Faith I quite liked, except the only (and its very small) criticism I have is that he tends bring in spirituality when I don't think it's quite relevant, etc, etc. But he does it in a skeptical approach which I do give him the benefit of the doubt. Overall a fantastic reads!

But if you haven't read any - start with Dawkins! :-)

Though for stubborn Christians reading this, I don't recommend going straight to any of these. Perhaps start with a more softy approach from several other authors. Julia Sweeney's "Letting go of God" is perhaps more a suitable step.
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Re: Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

Post  eccles on Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:23 pm

"It wasn't me, Sir" quoth the school boy.

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Re: Latest Reads--books, articles, etc.

Post  Imagine on Sat Jul 17, 2010 10:33 pm

eccles wrote:A few scientists, such as Carl Sagan and I. S. Shklovskii, have written about Däniken's paleocontact and extraterrestrial visitation claims. Although Sagan did not rule out the possibility of visitation, he insisted that "extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence", which Däniken fails to provide...(continued...)

Oh, wow, thanks! Naturally I'm more concerned with the validity of the argument than the fantastic idea of it all. I also apologize for recommending it before doing my research.

.:-Imagine-:.
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