Images of Sufi hell. Fascinating collection of some newly-translated fragments of a 19th c. manuscript, regarding the fate of sinners after their deaths.

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This is what freedom of religion looks like.  Click through the image for the full story on VICE.

It’ll be cast in bronze when it’s done.


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It’s windy today, and cold.  Well, not as much as it will be soon, but there’s a notable fall chill.  It feels like a learning kind of day.  In fact, I have my first arts reporting class tonight, and I’ve been reading about obituaries all day.

And while drinking coffee at my desk, I came across this lovely little gem of a TED talk.

This is from the fellow that wrote the book “Awakenings,” which became the movie, starring Robin Williams.

He talks about hallucinations among the visually impaired, and what we learn about the science of the mind from studying this relatively common phenomenon.

High quality stuff.

What separates the mind of a scientist (or, more generally, a rationalist) from the average person?  Sent my way by Brother Doug.

xkcd – A Webcomic – The Difference.

His logic is not as strong as he’d like you to believe.

This came my way because of a thread on Less Wrong about recommended reading for new rationalists.  Eliezer Yudkowski is a very bright fellow, and this little quote comes from somewhat mathematical lesson on what constitutes a “technical explanation,” as opposed to a verbal explanation.

“Remember Spock from Star Trek? Spock often says something along the lines of, ‘Captain, if you steer the Enterprise directly into a black hole, our probability of survival is only 2.837%.’ Yet nine times out of ten the Enterprise is not destroyed. What kind of tragic fool gives a figure with four significant digits of precision that is wrong by two orders of magnitude?”

via Yudkowsky – Technical Explanation.

Famous philosopher David Chalmers has announced the public availability of, a huge online repository of philosophical journals and resources from all over the web.  New issues of more than 200 journals, on a huge variety of subjects.

Browse around through their categories and see what I mean!

Found via PhilosophyNow, via monochrom.