A log of one man’s search for the beautiful, the true and the wondrous, navigating with the sextant of freethought.

The blog’s title is a hat-tip to the HMS Beagle, the ship that bore Charles Darwin to the Galapagos Islands. It’s also a smile toward a breed of dog that has been described as

…intelligent, but as a result of being bred for the long chase [they] are single-minded and determined, which can make them hard to train. They are generally obedient but can be difficult to recall once they have picked up a scent and are easily distracted by smells around them. They do not generally feature in obedience trials; while they are alert, respond well to food-reward training, and are eager to please, they are easily bored or distracted. They are ranked 72nd in Stanley Coren’s The Intelligence of Dogs, as Coren places them among the group with the lowest degree of working/obedience intelligence. Coren’s scale, however, does not assess understanding, independence or creativity.

The Most Important Posts page summarizes the journey so far.

Image credit: Carson Beagles.

7 responses to “About

  1. I love all the great thoughts and topics you bring in up in this blog. It’s really fascinating, I’ll be reading back through some of your posts soon

    In the meantime, I’ve decided to pass on the A Thought Provoking Blog Award to you. It’s a badge you can put in your side bar, and nominate others if you’d like. Here’s my acceptance post so you have an idea of what it is.


    Keep doing what you do! All the very best!!🙂

  2. Is there any way that I could contact you without leaving a public message on your blog? If you tweet, shoot me a message @gtwy

  3. joe whittingtom

    I am a 65 year old marine corps Vietnam vet . I have read this page only. You say what I fill. I have a lot more to read. so for I love this site.

  4. Hey Tip of the Beagle, good article. I work at Record and we’re currently looking for freelancers. I think you’d be a nice addition to our roster.

    We pay our freelancers 70% of the advertising profit that their articles generate. If you’re interested, send your info at http://www.newsrecord.co/opportunities. If you mention that I commented on this article, you’ll be accepted right away.


  5. I scanned through your most important posts and I thought one subject might be missing: why religion is so appealing. My short answer is that if allows believers to share their worries (prayer) with beings in the hope that they will receive help in some form (guidance or solution); it gives hope for an ultimate justice to those crimes and harms that we see go unpunished while we are alive (they’ll get theirs in the end); it gives hope to eternal life with loved ones who have passed away; it allows one to gather with like-minded people, which provides both socialization and reinforcement of belief. There may be other reasons, but as a former believer, these are the ones that come front and center for me. In essence, each of the four items I have noted provide relief from life’s stresses.

    P.S. I did like your series on slavery, but I think you could use one on misogyny. Just a few months ago I was driving through the Bible belt and listened to a story on a Christian radio station on why one woman believed that her life was in shambles because she was not being subservient to her husband. I paused to think how many male and especially female listeners heard that story and took it to heart.

  6. MFG, you started your second sentence with, “My short answer is…”. I believe the answer is much shorter than what you propose. I think it was Albert Einstein who said, “Everything should be as simple as possible, but not simpler.” In an Ocamm’s Razor-ish sense, I believe it is just this: Most people are so fearful of not knowing what happens after they die, they need the ready made answer that religion provides. Human consciousness, that tragic misstep of evolution, allows us to ponder our own mortality. Saying, “I don’t know.” is debilitating to most people. Giving them an “everlasting life” story allows them to function.
    Even when you delve deeply into their religious texts to point out all the discrepancies and irrationalities, they will apologize for, or live in denial of, those. Because they have been told that these texts, and their deities, are infallible, to question or doubt any part of it, would then make the end game (immortality) also questionable. And that is just too much to handle.
    All the other stuff, social contract, community, etc., are just sidelights. You can get all that by just realizing your humanity.
    Boil it down to one simple reason, and I believe that is it. Keep it simple.

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