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Enemies of Reason
There are two ways of looking at the world – through faith and superstition or through the rigours of logic, observation and evidence – in other words, through reason. Reason and a respect for evidence are precious commodities, the source of human progress and our safeguard against fundamentalists and those who profit from obscuring the truth.
Yet, today, society appears to be retreating from reason.
Apparently harmless but utterly irrational belief systems from astrology to New Age mysticism, clairvoyance to alternative health remedies are booming.
Richard Dawkins confronts what he sees as an epidemic of irrational, superstitious thinking...
Part 1: The Irrational Health Service
Originally aired on BBC4 Mon 20 Aug 2007 8pm
Prof Richard Dawkins looks at how health has become a battleground between reason and superstition. A third of us now spend a total of over 1.6 billion a year on superstitious alternative remedies, but 80% of them have never been subjected to properly conducted trials.
Part 2: Slaves to Superstition
Originally aired on BBC4 Mon 13 Aug 2007 8pm
Prof Richard Dawkins tackles the epidemic of irrational, superstitious thinking which is blotting the light of logic and evidence. After garnering tips on psychics' entirely earthly trade secrets from the illusionist Derren Brown, Dawkins attends a seance and confronts the medium. Time and again, the interviewees appeal to personal revelation or second-hand anecdote to justify their belief.
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