The Politics of Crazy Beliefs

Billy’s Blog
DISCLAIMER: Billy Riggs does not speak on (or even address) the topic below in any of his public presentations, but his interests are wide and varied, so he sometimes uses this blog to express views he finds interesting or noteworthy.The unfolding Disneyland™ measles outbreak has reignited the sim ...
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Why We Believe Wacky Things, (Part III)

Billy’s Blog
This is Part III of Billy’s previous blog...As I write this morning two monsters, brothers named Said and Cherif Kouachi, are holed-up in a French printing factory with a hostage, insisting that they want to die as martyrs and thus experience the bliss of Allah’s blessing upon t ...
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Why We Believe Wacky Things (Part II)

Billy’s Blog
This is a continuation of Billy’s previous blog...Really smart and quite sane people can believe not-so-smart and way-too-crazy things. When I’m driving at night I often turn on the car radio to keep myself awake. Invariably, I stumble across a late-night program entitled “Coa ...
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Why We Believe Wacky Things (Part I)

Billy’s Blog
They say that seeing is believing, but new research suggests that isn’t so. To the contrary, believing is seeing. We do not believe things because we see them; we see things (even if they’re not actually there) or refuse to see them (though they may be right und ...
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The Power of Imagination

Billy’s Blog
Just a few months before I was born in 1958, the first International Tchaikovsky Competition was hosted, as it has been every four years since, in Moscow.  That inaugural year, the winner was a 23-year-old phenom named Van Cliburn. While Cliburn, as first-place champion, would soar to international ...
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The False Beauty of an Illusion

Billy’s Blog
il·lu·sionnoun. 1. An erroneous perception of reality. 2. An erroneous concept or belief. 3. The condition of being deceived by a false perception or belief.dis·illu·sion·ment noun. The act of freeing someone from an illusion, or the state of being freed therefrom.You have a serio ...
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The View From the Peanut Gallery

Billy’s Blog
The year was 1935, and an eighth-grade boy whose uncle had nicknamed him “Sparky” was doing even worse than usual. As though being a shy, friendless nerd wasn’t bad enough, Sparky struggled mightily in school. He flunked algebra that year. He also received an F in English and Latin. Astonishin ...
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Grand Illusions Chapter One: The Birth of a Grand Illusion

Billy’s Articles
It was one of those rare, once or twice-in-a-lifetime epiphanies, a flash of insight that was – I would learn later – to become a hinge on which my adult life would turn. I was in my mid-thirties, and had been in the ministry or preparing for it since I was 16. I was the Senior Pastor of a robus ...
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Happily DIS-illusioned

Billy’s Articles
Happily DisillusionedBy Billy Riggs, the World's Only Dis-IllusionistYou and I have something in common: we're both illusionists. There are differences, of course. I perform my classic illusions on stage, cutting your executive assistant in three pieces, floating your company's bookkeeper in the air ...
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How to Make Your Next Conference 50% Better… with NO Effort at All!

Billy’s Articles
          I’ll never forget it.  The meeting that day in the summer of 1997 was a disaster.  Being generally accustomed to attentive audiences, gales of laughter, and standing ovations, I was thoroughly demoralized as I reflected on what had gone so terribly wrong.  It was not my fault, I ...
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