This is a space for rationality and criticism against nonrational misuse of science. The 21st century will be strongly influenced by scientific progress but it will also face the biggest challenges of our history. Climate change is becoming a reality, economic instabilities can drive large inequalities in our globalized world and energy and water crises will soon need to be addressed. This occurs in a political universe where scientific iliteracy is widespread, being most politicians just technocrats with little vision of the future beyond their short-lived plans. Not surprisingly, most leaders are religion-driven, believe in things such as homeopathic remedies or simply ignore the most elementary facts of science. Education is the only effective weapon to solve this, although we are running out of time. Science offers the most open, critic and verifiable source of understanding. It opens our minds to the beauty and magic of life and the universe. It is, as Carl Sagan used to say, a candle in the dark. Here I try to put together interesting pieces of information and thinking concerning a number of important ideas and how they affect our lives.

Three main points are relevant here. One is the tolerance towards non-rational thinking and the lack of an education system that prevents such irrational view of the world to succeed. There is an urgent need to change this, having people to be exposed to skepticism as a way of looking at reality, politics and society. Second, science is more and more able to address deep questions that were considered philosophical and are now the target evolutionary biology or physics. These affect our nature as species or the possibility that the origins of the universe itself could be understood in scientific terms, among other things. Finally, there is religion. Over the last years, several leading scientists have started to react to the dominant view that religion needs to "be respected" beyond any reasonable limits and thus no criticism. But religion is being misused in many ways and it is time to consider a critical view of its value, influence and dangers. I adhere to Dawkin's claim: "let's all stop being so damn respectful".

Evolution and rational thinking

  • Root of all evil
    Richard Dawkins has made a good job in discussing the lack of rationality and the dangers of religious belief. Although there is no doubt religion is a source of help, comfort and life's guide for many, it has also been misused repeatedly and represents -from a rational perspective- a conscious suspension of rational thinking and criticism. Play
  • Enemies of reason (Enemigos de la razón)
    A great documentary on the absurdities of the paranormal psudoscience, new age thinking and so on. Dawkins puts together a good deal of these irrational views and their danger for our society. He show very well this large industry of nonsense has gained strenght all over the world. Play
  • The genius of Charles Darwin
    A great documentary on the scientific contributions of Charles Darwin. It not only looks at the rationality and scientific evidence for evolution but also goes into the personal life and his change from belief to agnosticism. Play
  • Intelligent design on trial
    This documentary, partially direct interviews and partially dramatized by NOVA, is a great account of the trial that took place after the Dover, Pennsylvania school board established a policy that science teachers would have to read a statement to biology students suggesting that there is an alternative to Darwin's theory of evolution called "intelligent design". Teachers and parents opposed to this nonsense and filed a lawsuit in federal court. Play 

 Something out of nothing: the new cosmology

  • MiniaturaUniverse from nothing
    Lawrence Krauss is a theoretical physicist who has been doing a strong educational and outreach work on a major question: WHy there is something instead of nothing? New results from cosmology and particle physics suggests that not only potential answers, but also new ways of formulating the question, might be right here. Play
  • MiniaturaGod is not a good theory
    Sean Carroll is a known theoretical physicist and has written several books of fundamental physics, including "From eternity to here" which involves the quest for a new theory of time. He has also supported the view that modern physics might be capable of explaining even the most fundamental questions on the origins of the universe, stressing that God does not seem to be required. Play
  • MiniaturaHawking, M-theory and goodbye to God
    The great Stephen Hawking, a legend among physicists, proposed recently that M-theory, yet to be proved to be a complete theory of "everything" has suggested in his book "The grand design" that modern physics will provide the full framework to explain our universe and its origins. Play
  • MiniaturaIs the universe designed? The antropic principle by L. Susskind
    Leonard Susskind is a major contributor to string theory, quantum cosmology and quantum mechanics. He is also an exceptional teacher (look at his videos, lecturing on the most advances areas of theoretical physics at Stanford) and has written several popular books, including "The cosmic landscape" where he provides strong evidence against intelligent design of our universe. Play

 Astrology, quantum healing and the paranormal bullshit

  • Carl Sagan on Astrology
    A small piece from Sagan's Cosmos series. I'll use the words of a commentary from youtube on this video: "Astrology is just as empty as religion. Just another arrogant and vain att\ empt of people to feel important in the universe because they are too damn scared to realize how insignificant we really are.Play
  • James Randi about psychic fraud (mediums, homeopathy & more)
    James Randi is one of the best in uncovering the truth behind all kinds of frauds, from astrology and telepathy to homeopathy. A great TED talk. For more information on Randi's work, see: Play
  • Derren Brown investigates
    Derren Brown takes off around the globe to uncover some extraordinary supernatural and psychic claims. He is a gifted magician and mentalist, and shows how all kinds of pretended powers are fully explainable from tricks. No communication with the dead yet. Sorry. Play
  • MiniaturaJulia Sweeney on Deepak Chopra
    Deepak Chopra is one of the greatest producers on nonsense bullshit. A major prophet of quantum healing, he has displayed a great arrogance along with great amounts of verbal noise where he keeps claiming all kinds of absurdities. Julia Sweeney makes a great point here. Play

 Evolution and humor: Good videos

  • Lewis Black on evolution, fossils and the bible
    This is a really funny video. Comedian Lewis Black makes fun on the literal interpretation of the bible and how it has been misused by Christian fundamentalists: “Was the heavens and Earth created in seven days? No.” Play
  • Ricky Gervais on the Bible
    Comedian, actor and director Ricky Gervais reads the Genesis, making fun about the absurdities of the creation tale. I love the snake part. Brilliant, as usual. Play
  • Religulous
    Very interesting documentary by Bill Maher. Might be biased at some places and of course it is dedicated to show the extreme views. But some of these views are influential and fully accepted by important politicians. They are a source of hate, ignorance and violence. It's a funny one but the final words are certainly not. Play
  • Tim Minchin: Tony The Fish
    Tim Minchin i a very interesting comedian and singer, with rather sharp and hilarious song lyrics. He is also a strong supporter of rationality and evolution. Here's a great example. Play
  • Homeopathic E. R.
    Very funny one on homeopathic treatment for a guy in an emergency room after being hit by a car. It would be funnier if you were not sure that homeopathic "treatments" are actually used by iresponsible people (including MDs) for treating serious things. Play
  • Noah's ark nonsense: some comedy!A great collection of comedies making fun of Noah's Ark "story". I always ask myself what kind of moral lesson can be taken from a God that decides to kill all humans (and animals, for some reason). Play