shahbaz khan

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Early Christianity

Emerging from a small sect of Judaism in the 1st century CE, early Christianity absorbed many of the shared religious, cultural, and intellectual …

Theology

Obama's Legacy of Impunity for Torture

The 44th president’s decision to “look forward” has enabled Donald Trump to look backward and appoint a torture backer to run the CIA.<p>Much has been made of President Trump’s disregard for rules and norms—boundaries delineated by ethics and morality if not written laws themselves. But transgressing …

Donald Trump

Unplugging From the Internet Nearly Destroyed Me

A totally true account of a time I went off-line<p>Most days, I am tethered to my phone. I walk around gorging myself on news from my mobile devices, constantly absorbing information, soaking in stories without satiation or satisfaction. I am bombarded by alerts and notifications, retweets and likes …

Journalism

How to make your writing simple and understandable

Writing for the general public means leaving certain notions behindIf you’ve ever had to explain a complicated subject to the general public, whether …

Royal Burial in Ancient Canaan May Shed New Light on Biblical City

An undisturbed elite tomb discovered in ancient Armageddon is replete with gold offerings—and the promise of unlocking secrets with DNA analysis.<p>The extraordinary discovery of a magnificent and untouched 3,600-year-old burial chamber in the ancient Canaanite city-state of Megiddo has stunned …

Archaeology

How Psychologists Define Attention

Attention is a concept studied in cognitive psychology that refers to how we actively process specific information in our environment. As you are …

Mindfulness

Why a Classic German Children's Tale Is Ripe for Revisiting

A 45-year-old fantasy novel by the author of The Neverending Story is in many ways a fitting companion to A Wrinkle in Time.<p>From an early age, many children learn that time is precious, before growing into adults who see it as a commodity to be managed at all costs. But literature for young readers …

Books

Itzamná: The Mayan Supreme Being and Father of the Universe

The Ancient Mayan God of Creation, Writing, and Divination<p>Itzamná (pronounced Eetz-am-NAH and sometimes spelled Itzam Na), is one of the most …

Attribution and How We Explain Behavior

In social psychology, <b>attribution</b> is the process of inferring the causes of events or behaviors. In real life, attribution is something we all do …

Psychology

Strange, elongated skulls reveal medieval Bulgarian brides were traded for politics

In a handful of medieval Bavarian farming hamlets populated mostly by blue-eyed blondes, more than a dozen women with dark hair, dark eyes, and …

Anthropology

My friend’s story proves men can change. Now educators are working with young boys to help them escape gender roles at an early age<p>I have a friend – let’s call him Dave, though that’s not his name – who is active in his church, a loving and supportive husband, and a hilarious dinner companion. He’s …

Middle School

The Man Busting Narendra Modi’s Tall Tales

In 2017, the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi claimed in an official document that it had set up floodlights for hundreds of miles along …

India

How a career change at 32 led Ava DuVernay to become the first black woman to direct a $100 million film

Ava DuVernay is a director, producer and screenwriter whose highly-anticipated movie, "A Wrinkle in Time," has earned her recognition as the first …

A 2nd century 007? Archaeologists discover barracks that may have been used by ancient Rome's secret service

Italian archaeologists have found the remains of a barracks that they believe may have been used by ancient Rome's equivalent of the secret service.<p>The discovery was made during deep excavations for a new metro station in Rome, named Amba Aradam after a mountain plain in Ethiopia where Italian …

Ancient History

Kingdom of Saba

Saba (also given as Sheba) was a kingdom in southern Arabia (region of modern-day Yemen) which flourished between the 8th century BCE and 275 CE when …

Ancient History

People Don't Actually Know Themselves Very Well

Chances are, your coworkers are better at rating some parts of your personality than you are.<p>When Donald Trump tweeted that he was a “very stable genius,” he was accused of lacking self-awareness by journalists and comedians. But the truth is that no one has perfect self-awareness—you probably …

Psychology

SpaceX is Getting Serious About Its Future BFR Launchpad to Mars

When SpaceX does begin sending people to Mars, the last part of Earth they see from the ground — perhaps ever if it’s a one-way trip — will likely be …

Ravens Are Evolving, and Not in the Way You'd Expect

Instead of branching into new species, raven groups experienced something called "speciation reversal."<p>A new study shows that the common raven is anything but commonplace in its evolution.<p>Using DNA samples taken from ravens for nearly twenty years, the study provides evidence that common ravens on …

Birds

Monotasking is one of the best ways to get things done — here's how to do it

You may think you can do everything right now, but you can't — and you shouldn't.<p>Many studies have shed light on the downside of multitasking—trying to juggle multiple tasks at one time. One often cited study from Stanford University found that people who multitask are more easily distracted, less …

Hurrians

The Hurrians (aka Hurri or Khurri) were a Bronze Age people who flourished across the Near East from the 4th millennium BCE to the 1st millennium …

Ancient History

Happy birthday Galileo!

Happy 454th birthday to one of the first modern scientists, Galileo. With the aid of an early telescope, he helped remove Earth from the center of …

Astronomy

Strong right-wing views may be driven by a fear of disease, study suggests

People with strong right-wing views may be driven by a fear of disease and increased concern about hygiene, a new study suggests.<p>Researchers found that people who are easily disgusted by the body odours of others, such as sweat, bad breath or the smell of urine, are also drawn to authoritarian …

Research

Consider the Fruit Fly

Modern genetics would not be possible without the humble fruit fly.<p>In college, I worked briefly in a fruit-fly lab, where I spent most of my time just keeping different fly strains alive. It was not difficult—as anyone with a fruit-fly infestation can tell you—but the repetitive work imprinted …

Biology

Turkey Is Turning Into the Next Pakistan

The U.S. should make clear to ersatz allies that betrayal has consequences.<p>There isn't much that Turkey's president can do these days to further debase his reputation in the West. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has crushed peaceful protests at home and abroad, closed newspapers, threatened American soldiers, …

A Harvard scientist who's studied coffee for 20 years explains why the drink is amazing

Dr. Frank Hu just finished a 20-year study on the effects of coffee on the human body. People who drink more coffee it turns out, live …

Coffee

How gun ownership became a powerful political identity

Or, how the NRA won.<p>In the weeks following the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, as a movement for gun control arose and organized this Saturday’s March for Our Lives, a large group of Americans felt under attack, in imminent danger: gun owners.<p>“The left is working overtime to marginalize the …

See Inside This Newly Discovered Ancient Egyptian Cemetery

Artifacts found inside the network of tombs suggest it contains a priest of the ancient Egyptian deity Thoth.<p>"This is only the beginning of a new discovery," Egypt's Antiquities Minister, Khaled al-Anani, said in a statement.<p>He added that excavators will need at least five years to uncover the …

Archaeology

Did Human Sacrifice Help People Form Complex Societies?

The debate over how well ritual killings maintained social order<p>In 1598, a European miner working in the Bolivian highlands stumbled across a 10-year-old Andean girl who was still alive, despite having been walled up inside a funerary tower three days earlier. Several decades had passed since the …

Duolingo data shows this is the fastest way to learn a new language

Language-learning app Duolingo recently combed through a mountain of user data to find the best times each day to practice a foreign language. Its findings were published today at <i>Quartz</i>.<p>The findings essentially mirrored a 2016 study that showed the positive effect on sleep between practice …