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I've never felt that Sagan was really anti-religion. What he didn't like was religions that believed in a little tiny god that couldn't handle the magnitude of space and time. Bart Kowallis pointed this out in his BYU Today article several years ago. The Mormon God, the eternal god, is not diminished in any way by a universe that is 4.5 billion years old or by evolution or by anything we've discovered so far. In that sense, I think Sagan was complimentary to LDS doctrine.

The interesting thing for me is how this view of things fits with Sagan's intense interest in communicating with extraterrestial intelligences. A scientist interested in such things would have to address all the UFO bunk and distinguish that what he is into is something different. Then there is the scientist's bias that communications with life from elsewhere must be mediated in a scientific way, recording signals on radio telescopes just like you would when studying the physical properties of space. That the bulk of interactions between humans is nothing like that, well, that doesn't matter.

An example of what I mean with that last sentence is that the rigor with which we could reconstruct our childhood memories of our mothers is not a whole lot better what we could expect from the witness of a bigfoot sighting. Having a mother when we were children is still an important human experience.

It might be nice if he mentioned that the two people were killed by the forger trying to cover up his misdeeds, which runs contrary to his claim of "conscious fraud".

Which suggests that Carl Sagan is so careless about the facts that he just makes things up to support his position. Most readers, perhaps, have better things to do with their lives than read books written by people who make up the truth to suit them personally.

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