WPITW: Pastor Wiley S. Drake

Let’s all pray for him, shall we… And the lonely hearts at Free Republic too — just for good measure.

Not, of course, that prayer has any noticeable effect whatsoever.



Filed under Humour, Religion, Wingnuts

12 responses to “WPITW: Pastor Wiley S. Drake

  1. philosoraptor


    If you haven’t seen Dr. Andy Thomson’s talk on the cognitive neuroscience of religious belief, and the probable mechanisms of its evolutionary development, you should really check it out: Andy Thomson, April 2009. I suspect you will find it very interesting.

    PS: Really enjoyed the third part of that doc. I was disappointed to realize that I have neglected to nurture an interest in modern British politics, a fact that is all the more suprising given that some of my family still lives over there. I always seem to stop reading when I get into the 20th century, but everytime I encounter some sort of sociopolitical analysis I’m always captured by it.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I wish that Canadian politics were as interesting as American politics – and now I will add, British politics.

  2. I’m glad that you enjoyed it. I’m fascinated by British politics, but there’s something essentially sad and demoralizing about it for me — tragic decline and fall, etc., I suppose.

    That said, it’s never without its peculiar amusements:

    “Levantine remains…” Heh. How charming.

  3. Dave — By the way, thanks for the link. It’s just buffering it up now and I’ll give it a listen in a bit. Not familiar with Thompson or his work, but I’m curious to see what his explanation is. (Something surprising, I hope.)

  4. Cameron

    I just tried to click your link about no noticeable effect and I got a 404 error. This tickled me.

  5. philosoraptor

    I’d heard of the prayer study. I’m glad it was done, because it definitely carries significant weight. However, I’m very quickly losing respect for the Templeton Foundation. From what I’ve read they are treading on dangerously thin ice by putting fringe religious groups on the same footing as scientific bodies when it comes to questions of science. It is very concerning.

  6. philosoraptor

    Hey Red, I’m also becoming an avid watcher of anything having to do with Lawrence Krauss. If you haven’t heard of him, do a search on Google video. He’s a cosmologist and astrophysicist who does not infrequent talks on religion, education and politics.

    It always bothered me – as someone whose initial love was physics and mathematics and whose first degree was in physics – that the defenders of religion, in their efforts to shoehorn God into ever-narrowing gaps of knowledge, consistently bring up the ‘fine-tuning’ arguments, and similar arguments that depend on very esoteric physical theories. I’ve been hoping to see a voice from the physics community step up to the plate, even if only ocassionally, to address these claims head on.

  7. Pingback: Pastor Wiley Drake Prays For The Death Of Barack Obama | Prose Before Hos

  8. Dave — The Star Trek guy! I’d like to read that book one of these days.

    I seem to recall Neil deGrasse Tyson demolishing the “fine tuning” argument, as I’m sure others have also.

  9. philosoraptor

    Unfortunately, even though the argument has been addressed in various forms and with numerous approaches ad nauseum, it still comes up whenever religion and science are discussed. This is because it is still a relatively poorly understood area of physics generally, and wherever there is a knowledge gap, we’re sure to find religion trying to cram their particular deity into it. Physicists are careful not to overstate their knowledge. Unfortunately, creationists et al feel no such compunction.

    I remember watching a particularly frustrating debate between Hitchens and D’Souza where it made an appearance, and, Hitchens being somewhat honest about what he does and does not know, was unable to address it, seemingly giving points by default to D’Souza. That sort of behaviour pisses me off immensely and is largely the reason why I find debates to be a terrible vehicle for science discussions (as Dawkins remarked in a talk once: “They were invented by lawyers”).

  10. philosoraptor

    I had not realized that Krauss was the author of that book. If I didn’t have my head buried in textbooks right now I’d love to pick it up.

  11. philosoraptor

    I should add that one of the unfortunate things about Tyson is that he does not get actively involved in defending science against religion – at least not as much as Krauss and/or Dawkins. In fact, the only time I saw Dawkins and Tyson interact in a discussion, Tyson actually told Dawkins that he felt that his approach to promoting science was TOO harsh and actually detracted from his primary mission – to advance the understanding of science and persuade people to appreciate it. He felt he was too insensitive.

    Dawkins responded with an anecdote about the former editor of New Scientist, who, when asked about the ‘philosophy’ of New Scientist, replied: “Science is interesting…and if you don’t agree, you can fuck off”.

    If you haven’t seen it, you should. It’s short and sweet.

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