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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Passover in the Quran

The story of Passover in the Quran
In the Quran, one of the most recounted stories is the story of the bondage of the Children of Israel and their deliverance from Egypt's Pharaoh. Continue reading at
On the same shelf:
  • A Muslim at Passover
  • Monday, March 25, 2013

    Is hell exothermic or endothermic? What Says

    Extract from
    "A true story. A thermodynamics professor had written a take home exam for his graduate students. It had one question:

    "Is hell exothermic or endothermic? Support your answer with a proof."

    Most of the students wrote proofs of their beliefs using Boyle's Law or some variant. One student, however, wrote the following:

    First, we postulate that if souls exist, then they must have some mass. If they do, then a mole of souls can also have a mass. So, at what rate are souls moving into hell and at what rate are souls leaving? I think that we can safely assume that once a soul gets to hell, it will not leave. Therefore, no souls are leaving.

    As for souls entering hell, lets look at the different religions that exist in the world today. Some of these religions state that if you are not a member of their religion, you will go to hell. Since there are more than one of these religions and people do not belong to more than one religion, we can project that all people and all souls go to hell.

    With birth and death rates as they are, we can expect the number of souls in hell to increase exponentially.

    Now, we look at the rate of change in volume in hell. Boyle's Law states that in order for the temperature and pressure in hell to stay the same, the ratio of the mass of souls and volume needs to stay constant.

    So, if hell is expanding at a slower rate than the rate at which souls enter hell, then the temperature and pressure in hell will increase until all hell breaks loose.

    Of course, if hell is expanding at a rate faster than the increase of souls in hell, than the temperature and pressure will drop until hell freezes over."

    Claim: A student came up with a clever proof and pithy saying in response to an exam question about the physical properties of Hell.


    • Commonly, the piece begins with a statement meant to authenticate the story. "An actual question given on University of Washington chemistry midterm," "from a Yale professor," and "Dr. Schambaugh, of the University of Oklahoma School of Chemical Engineering, Final Exam question for May of 1997" have been spotted so far.
    • Sometimes the student's comments culminate in the assertion that hell must be exothermic because a girl he'd been chasing had sworn it'd be a cold day in hell before she'd sleep with him, and he'd so far been unable to get to first base with her.
    • Often the story concludes with "The student received the only 'A' given on the exam."
    Continue reading the full script at

    Tuesday, March 19, 2013

    Reading now: Prayer Is Good Medicine

    Prayer Is Good Medicine: How to Reap the Healing Benefits of Prayer by Larry Dossey
    'With the elegance of simplicity and the precision of science, Dossey shows us how we can create a lasting partnership between faith and medicine.' DEEPACK CHOPRA, M.D.

    Publisher description:
    Counter Physician Larry Dossey – one of today's foremost authority and most highly sought-after speaker on the relationship between prayer and healing – offers practical methods and illuminating explorations of the what, where, how, and why of the power of prayer to affect our health. Putting aside confounding scientific jargon. Dossey employs his trademark style of informed and warmly anecdotal writing to examine people's hopes and expectations of prayer, as well as their anxieties and misconceptions. For readers who want to understand the spiritual dimension of health and healing. Dossey has created an invaluable and inspiring resource.

    Editorial Reviews Review
    Since Larry Dossey wrote his first book, Healing Words: The Power of Prayer and the Practice of Medicine, he has toured the world meeting with audiences as diverse as Pentagon employees, church groups, and the British parliament. ... Prayer Is Good Medicine divides these discussions into four neatly contained sections. As prayer moves into the center stage of Western medicine Prayer Is Good Medicine acts as a modern-day prayer book as well as an ethical touchstone for healers and seekers.
    From Publishers Weekly
    Unlike medical practitioners in the East, many physicians in the West argue that the healing power of science is far superior to, and often incompatible with, the healing power of prayer. Yet, physician Dossey, attentive to the ways in which spiritual health affects bodily health, demonstrated in his Healing Words that the capacity of prayer to heal, combined with the capacity of science to heal, is far greater than the healing power of medicine alone. ...

    Testing Prayer Is an Act of Worship
    Experiments in Prayer Can Help Heal the Religion/Science Split
    The Impact of Prayer Experiments on Religious Beliefs
    The Scientific Understanding of Prayer Is Limited
    Prayer Is Not Just a Placebo
    Prayer Is Not Required to Go Anywhere

    Evaluating the Criticism That "Prayer Kills"
    Celebrating the Diversity of Prayer
    Praying for Others Without Their Consent
    Using Public Funds for Prayer Research
    Medical Malpractice and the Failure to Use Prayer

    The Universe Is Prayer
    Prayer Is an Attitude of the Heart
    Prayer Is What It Needs to Be
    A Prayer for Prayer
    Distinguishing Between Religion and Prayer
    The Body Does Not Distinguish Between Prayer and Meditation
    Ordinary Magic

    Credentials Don't Matter in Prayer
    Children Are Prayer
    Four-Legged Forms of Prayer
    A Doctor Tests Prayer
    Overcoming Ambivalence and Confusion About Prayer
    Who Can Benefit from Prayer?
    When We Need to Pray, We Will
    There Is No Best Way to Pray
    More Prayer Is Not Always Better
    Choosing to Pray Privately or Publicly Depends on Our Temperament
    You Can Pray in Your Dreams
    Glimpsing the Infinite
    Forgiving Ourselves for Getting Sick
    Praying "Thy Will Be Done"
    Praying for Corn in Iowa
    The Answer Isn't Always Yes
    Be Careful What You Ask For
    Beware of Negative Prayer
    Prayer Helps Us Be Warriors, Not Worriers

    Next item to read:

    Saturday, March 16, 2013

    Pope Francis and interfaith dialogue: Media Monitoring

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