Monthly Archives: November 2012

SCIENCE STUMBLES OVER DEATH

“Heaven Is Real” according to the cover story of the October 15 issue of Newsweek. The story chronicles Eben Alexander’s descent into a seven-day coma and journey into a wholly different level of conscious reality during that time. Dr. Alexander’s 25 years as a neurosurgeon and former professor at Harvard Medical School qualifies him to speak as a scientist, although his conclusions have provoked numerous critiques from fellow scientists.

In the fall of 2008, Alexander was rushed to the emergency room of Lynchburg General Hospital, where his colleagues determined that he had contracted a rare bacterial meningitis. E. coli had attacked his brain, shutting down his cortex, the part of the brain that controls thoughts and emotions. The synapses between the neurons no longer functioned, halting all electromagnetic activity that produces brain function. His doctors had verified by repeated tests that no brain function was possible during that seven-day period – no vision, hearing, emotion memory or logical reasoning. Continue reading

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Posted in Death, Science and Faith, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

WHEN CULTURES CONFLICT

Now a professor in psychology at UCLA studying teaching and learning internationally, Stigler identifies a distinction in the way the East and the West view intellectual struggle. “I think that from very early ages we [in America] see struggle as an indicator that you’re just not very smart. Whereas in Asian cultures they tend to see struggle more as an opportunity.”

Eastern culture treats struggle as part of the learning process, not an omen of the lack of inherent ability. Struggle allows a child to learn tenacity and persistence in solving a problem and achieving a goal, according to Stigler. The West tends to stigmatize struggle as a negative experience, often conditioning children to avoid the hard tasks or to concede too early, “I can’t do it.” Continue reading

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A SCIENTIFIC CRIME

Humanity will always search for a savior, someone who can protect them from disasters, deliver them from enemies or cure them of illnesses. Like dressing dogs in human clothing, fragile beings have costumed science with divine garbs. Those who point out the fictional character of the emperor’s garments are denounced as obtuse or unenlightened. Continue reading

Posted in God and Nature, Natural Disasters, Science and Faith, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment