I haven't been up to much lately. I had a great conversation with Kevin Brown (AKA Diglotting) on miracles that you can follow here. Turns out his experiences and my own were almost one and the same! For anyone that wants to know about my own strange experiences, I blogged about it here. I'm not sure which one of use had the stranger claims; I mean, my mom heard voices and smelled cooking on a few occasions! But than again, Kevin's experiences audio manifestations while awake, while I did not. What I found most fascinating, however, was that we had the exact same phobia of the dark and horrible dreams afterwards, which we both associated with our experiences in the house. The main difference between us was that my phobia gradually went away, while his went away all at once during his "born again" experience. Anyways, I hope to hear from him in a few months, when he's back from his vacation. It seems like, apart from the veridicality of our experiences, we agree on pretty much everything else!
In other news- I look forward to seeing Halliquist review Keeners book on miracles. Don't know how he got the idea to review it *cough cough me*, but I'm happy he did. Halliquist is popular in Atheist circles. When he reviews the book, it'll get a lot more attention from other skeptics, who will hopefully also take a closer look at it and Africa miracles in general. Also, I'd like to thank the commenter Rick for reminding me of the book. For some reason, the first time I heard about it, I just didn't care to probe it. Sorry, but Keener is a biblical scholar- not a Psychologist. He may know a bit about memory and the value of testimony, but not about hysteria, delusions, hallucinations, etc.
Finally, I'd like to say a few words on behalf of the late Tommy Baker. I never mentioned him on this blog- but I did read his posts, and even talked to him a few times. He was a smart guy who really did help raise the quality of Loftus' blog with his posts. Even though I disagreed with him on the Historical Jesus (he was a minimalist; I'm a moderate), I still found his posts very interesting. However, the thing I admired most about him was his dedication to informing the Skeptical movement.
This may seem random, but let me share a story with you. When I first started attending the Mississauga free thought association- I found that there were only three Philosophers. I asked one of them, an Epistemologist, why this was. He said he didn't know. I suggested that they, perhaps, didn't want to be associated with the New Atheist movement. He laughed affirmingly. It's sad, but many smart guys just don't care enough to blog or wrte about Atheism. This causes problems since, well, anyone with eyes can tell that there are far more apologetic books and blogs than skeptical ones. I remember when I first started to investigate the historical Jesus- I had to sift through tons of credulous apologists before I could find even a few skeptics like Carrier and Price- and even longer to find skeptics that were actually respected by scholars, like Vermes and Ludemann.
People like Tommy and Loftus are invaluable to the Atheism movement since, quite frankly, most Internet Atheists are uncritical and credulous. They need someone to at least point them in the direction of good arguments for and against Christianity. Now, as aforementioned- I disagree with them sometimes- but that doesn't matter. What matters is that they are at least trying- and I think that alone is commendable.