Category Archives: personal history

"Seriously, how can you not be an atheist?" Part 2

Like I said in Part 1 of this, the recounting of the experience of another human being can only be suggestive. Is what I perceive mere self-delusion, a strange artifact of a brain evolved for survival, or am I really touching an unseen reality? Also, while I have experienced for myself, and have trusted friends who have experienced highly improbable or even downright inexplicable things (for an example from my own life, see my post here), I know there's nothing I could possibly say a…

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"Seriously, how can you not be an atheist?" Part 1

When people hear that I have a PhD in mathematics, they often assume I'm an atheist.┬áIndeed, in our society there is an inverse correlation between education and religious belief. Moreover, in many people's lives, there is a direct line of causation between the two. Commonly, sometime in adolescence, whatever religious explanation of the world they have grown up with is rejected in favour of a secular view, either in a commitment to outright atheism, or an agnosticism that leaves the question of the existence of…

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I should be dead

This all happened in Central Asia almost 20 years ago. There wasn't much choice at the long-distance taxi stand. Besides a couple of worn-looking Moskvitches there was also a clean, crisp Lada. Since the ride to the capital was already about five hours without trundling along at 70 km/h in a Moskvitch, the Lada was really the only option. And so we negotiated the price with the young driver, and away we went. He was clean, well-dressed, almost preppy looking. As we got started, he…

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