Research Shows Many, in Fact, Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

It is a misnomer, one that has apparently seeped into the culture’s subconscious, that only one person flew over the cuckoo’s nest.

This myth, perpetuated by the 70’s movie classic of the same name, has become so ingrained into our psyche that it is safe to say public perception will never change no matter how much evidence is presented to the contrary.

Nevertheless, GlossyNews international affiliate Iron E-News is here to do its part.

Strange birds of all colors, shapes, and sizes, numbering in the billions, have made that fateful journey over the lowly jester’s tree and over the King of fools himself–The Cuckoo–perched on his nest of thorns (upside down), into, according the wisdom of this age, the darkening sky of intellectual infamy and disgrace.

Here are some of the more notable odd birds:

Literature

Fyodor Dostoevsky – (11 November 1821 – 9 February 1881) was a Russian novelist, short story writer and essayist. Many literary critics rate him as one of the greatest and most prominent psychologists in world literature.

C.S. Lewis – (29 November 1898 – 22 November 1963) was an English novelist, poet, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, and Christian apologist best known for such works as The Chronicles of Narnia, Mere Christianity, and The Screwtape Letters.

J.R.R. Tolkien – (3 January 1892 – 2 September 1973) was an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor, best known as the author of the classic high fantasy works The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. The creator of entire worlds and languages, Tolkien is often regarded as the father of high fantasy.

G.K. Chesterton – (29 May 1874 – 14 June 1936) an English author and thinker. He wrote on philosophy, ontology, poetry, plays, journalism, public lectures and debates, literary and art criticism, biography, Christian apologetics, and fiction, including fantasy and detective fiction. Chesterton is often referred to as the “prince of paradox.” His good friend, George Bernard Shaw, called him a “colossal genius”.

Charles Dickens – (7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world’s most memorable fictional characters and is generally regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian period. He is best known for such works as A Christmas Carol, Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, and A Tale of Two Cities.

T.S. Eliot – (September 26, 1888 – January 4, 1965) was an American publisher, playwright, literary and social critic and “arguably the most important English-language poet of the 20th century”. The poem that made his name, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock—started in 1910 and published in Chicago in 1915—is seen as a masterpiece of the Modernist movement. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1948.

E.E. Cummings – (October 14, 1894 – September 3, 1962) was an American poet, painter, essayist, author, and playwright. His body of work encompasses approximately 2,900 poems, two autobiographical novels, four plays and several essays, as well as numerous drawings and paintings. He is remembered as an eminent voice of 20th century poetry.

Science and Mathematics

Nicolaus Copernicus – (19 February 1473 – 24 May 1543) was a Polish Renaissance mathematician and astronomer who formulated a heliocentric view of the universe which placed the Sun, rather than the Earth, at the center. Copernicus was also a jurist with a doctorate in canon law and, though without degrees, a physician, classics scholar, translator, artist, governor, diplomat and economist.

Sir Francis Bacon – (22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626) was an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, jurist, and author. He served both as Attorney General and Lord Chancellor of England. Bacon has been called the creator of empiricism.

Johannes Kepler – (December 27, 1571 – November 15, 1630) was a German mathematician, astronomer, and astrologer. A key figure in the 17th century Scientific Revolution, he is best known for his eponymous laws of planetary motion–codified by later astronomers, based on his works. These works also provided one of the foundations for Isaac Newton’s theory of universal gravitation.

Sir Isaac Newton – (25 December 1642 – 20 March 1727) was an English physicist and mathematician who is widely regarded as one of the most influential scientists of all time and as a key figure in the Scientific Revolution.

Galileo Galilei – (15 February 1564– 8 January 1642) was an Italian physicist, mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher who played a major role in the Scientific Revolution. His achievements include improvements to the telescope and consequent astronomical observations and support for Copernicanism. Galileo has been called the “father of modern observational astronomy”, the “father of modern physics”, and the “father of modern science”.

Blaise Pascal – (19 June 1623 – 19 August 1662) was a French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer, and Christian philosopher. His notable ideas include “Pascal’s Wager”, “Pascal’s triangle”, “Pascal’s law”, and “Pascal’s theorem”. Pascal also wrote in defense of the scientific method.

Lord Kelvin – (26 June 1824 – 17 December 1907) was an Irish mathematical physicist and engineer. He did important work in the mathematical analysis of electricity and formulation of the first and second laws of thermodynamics and did much to unify the emerging discipline of physics in its modern form. He is most widely known for determining the correct value of absolute zero.

Philosophy

Elizabeth Anscombe – (18 March 1919 – 5 January 2001) was a British/Irish analytic philosopher. She wrote on the philosophy of mind, philosophy of action, ethics, and more. Born in Ireland, Anscombe was a student of Ludwig Wittgenstein and became an authority on his work and edited and translated many books drawn from his writings, above all his Philosophical Investigations. In 2010, philosopher Roger Scruton wrote that Anscombe was “perhaps the last great philosopher writing in English”. Though a fellow believer, she famously beat C.S. Lewis in a debate in 1948 over some of his ideas from the book Miracles.

William of Occam – (c. 1288 – c. 1347) was an English Franciscan friar and scholastic philosopher who is believed to have been born in Ockham, a small village in Surrey. He is considered to be one of the major figures of medieval thought and was at the center of the major intellectual and political controversies of the fourteenth century. He is commonly known for Occam’s razor, the methodological principle that bears his name. He also produced significant works on logic, physics, and theology.

Renee Descartes – (31 March 1596 – 11 February 1650) was a French philosopher, mathematician, and writer who has been dubbed the ‘Father of Modern Philosophy’. He was also one of the key figures in the Scientific Revolution.

John Locke – (29 August 1632 – 28 October 1704), was an English philosopher and physician regarded as one of the most influential of Enlightenment thinkers. His writings influenced Voltaire and Rousseau, many Scottish Enlightenment thinkers, as well as the American Revolutionaries.

Soren Kierkegaard – (5 May 1813 – 11 November 1855) was a Danish philosopher, theologian, poet, social critic and religious author. He is widely considered to be the first existentialist philosopher.

Richard Swinburne – (born 26 – December 1934) is a British philosopher of religion. He is an Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Oxford. He is best known for his book Is There a God? and Faith and Reason.

Civil Rights/Philanthropy

Martin Luther King Jr. – (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) was an American clergyman, activist, and leader in the African American Civil Rights Movement. He is best known for his role in the advancement of civil rights using nonviolent civil disobedience. King has become a national icon in the history of American progressivism. On October 14, 1964, King received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolence.

Mother Teresa – (26 August 1910 – 5 September 1997) was an ethnic Albanian, Indian Roman Catholic nun. Mother Teresa founded the Missionaries of Charity, a Roman Catholic congregation, which in 2012 consisted of over 4,500 sisters and is active in 133 countries. They run hospices and homes for people with HIV/AIDS, leprosy and tuberculosis; soup kitchens; children’s and family counseling programs; orphanages; and schools. She was the recipient of numerous honors including the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize.

William Wilberforce – (24 August 1759 – 29 July 1833) was an English politician, philanthropist, and a leader of the movement to abolish the slave trade. He headed the parliamentary campaign against the British slave trade for twenty-six years until the passage of the Slave Trade Act of 1807.

Florence Nightingale – (12 May 1820 – 13 August 1910) was a celebrated English social reformer and statistician and the founder of modern nursing. She came to prominence while serving as a nurse during the Crimean War, where she tended to wounded soldiers. She was dubbed “The Lady with the Lamp” after her habit of making rounds at night.

*info gathered from Wikipedia

“Lord, what fools these mortals be!” Don’t they know that the only truly thinking person is the atheist and those that believe in Jesus are all backwards, bucktoothed, and deluded?! Poor, poor Galileo, Newton, Kepler, Copernicus, Locke, etc. ad infinitum.

It’s too bad men like Richard Dawkins weren’t alive back then to set all of these simpletons straight.

CORRECTION: Article originally stated Copernicus was Prussian. We have changed this to Polish.

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15 comments on “Research Shows Many, in Fact, Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

  1. Maybe I missed the point of this fine documentary film you reference. I didn’t take it to mean ONLY one had flown over the nest, but that it chronicled this one in particular who had done so.

    Excellent research, by the way. I love a story with depth… oh, and I did write another comment to our discussion on the Origin of Everything story, if you wanna jab me back. :)

  2. Hey thanks. And as for the reference to the movie title, I used it playfully, as a way to highlight the common misconception that all Christians are dimwits. Though there are plenty of those without doubt. :) I guess idiots make for more entertaining news than people like Richard Swinburne.

  3. The great irony here is that the Scientific Revolution came out of an almost entirely theistic mindset, though you would rarely see that pointed out today. Nicolaus Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, Francis Bacon, René Descartes, Isaac Newton, Blaise Pascal, Antoine Lavoisier, Robert Boyle, Gottfried Leibniz etc. all believed the universe was governed by laws because of their belief in a Law Giver.

  4. And that theory has since been found to be completely lacking. We had thousands of questions and answered almost all of them without a deity. It asked another 100,000 questions, most of which have been answered without a deity. Now we have millions of questions, the majority answered, and none of the thousands of deities have been shown to be any more accurate than any other. Less accurate even than the works of Nostradamus, who conveniently didn’t bother to actually say anything.

    I’m not saying there’s no god, I’m saying the Christian interpretation of “God” is demonstrably false. By one count there are almost three thousand gods out there, throughout history, and you and I are in agreement about 99.93% of them. They are silly, absurd, clearly wrong, demonstrably false and completely imaginary. The difference between you and me is I go that extra .07%.

    Are Western Christians faithful because they studied all their options and had open discussions about what the correct path might be, or because they were born in a particular time and a particular place. I was a Christian because I was taught from a very young age that this was the only way, and every other way was a lie.

    They can’t all be right, they are too different. Hindus, Buddhists and Abrahamics are NOT worshiping the same god in different clothes. The faiths share virtually nothing in common. Christianity has more in common with ancient Egyptian religion than it does with Hinduism.

    I’m not here to persuade you. No atheist could have shook my faith when I was a Christian. And believe you me, I was quite a Christian. Tithed, attended regularly, taught Sunday school, even have an absurdly large cross tattoo. No, it wasn’t the atheists that led me to doubt, it was the Christians.

    I have no problems with your beliefs, but that’s not to say I have no problems with Christianity, or other faiths for that matter. I stay out of your business, but many extremely vocal Christians insist on legislation based on their beliefs.

    I ran a cartoon (or three) about the absurdity of calling gay marriage wrong on Biblical terms. Abortion? God himself aborted his creation (humanity and 99.99% of all animals) in the great flood. The passage is clear.

    Believing there’s something greater than us isn’t crazy. It may even be likely. But if you believe the Bible to be the word of that greater being, my friend, I’d like to share what I’ve learned from the Bible with you.

    Still love you, Jeff. Don’t want to push you off the site by any means. This is spirited discussion and we’re both entitled to know that the other is wrong. ;)

  5. Actually he was Polish. Nicolaus Copernicus was born on 19 February 1473 in the city of Toruń , in the province of Royal Prussia, in the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland. His father was a merchant from Kraków and his mother was the daughter of a wealthy Toruń merchant.

  6. No, it’s good. You bring up some valid points. Referring to the comment I made, the great minds that gave us tools like the scientific method and other modes of empiricism on the one hand (Aristotle, Descartes, Bacon, Occam, and Locke) ardently defended their belief in a higher power on the other; furthermore, they didn’t see this as a contradiction. And yet, to quote Dr. John Lennox (professor of mathematics at Oxford), there is a creeping danger today of equating science with rationality. But the very men that taught us to be rational scientists clearly saw the limits of science in teaching us what we can and can’t know.

  7. And as for the point about deity disagreement, if it’s used as evidence, it actually strengthens the argument for God. If a hundred people witness a car crash you’re going to get a lot of accounts that disagree on the details, but the fact that all hundred people are talking about a crash is very compelling evidence that one actually took place.

  8. I love you Jeff, let me start with that.

    “If a hundred people witness a car crash you’re going to get a lot of accounts that disagree on the details, but the fact that all hundred people are talking about a crash is very compelling evidence that one actually took place.”

    What if we then look at video footage and see that it didn’t happen. What if we pull satellite imaging and it agrees. What if we pull cell phone records and find there was a willful, coordinated effort to make it look like there was an accident, when in fact there was none?

    Christianity has been shown to have repeatedly covered the tracks of history when it’s not in lockstep with what they like.

    I’m not trying to convince you that you’re wrong. I’m just telling you with full conviction, I’ve done my homework and I have seen nothing to convince me that Christians have the first leg to stand on. You are free to disagree, but I have the Bible to back me. It’s a book of Bedouin folklore. Any attempts to live by it today will only lead to confusion.

    Evangelicals have a higher divorce rate than atheists. You know divorce is a sin, right? It says it like a dozen times in the Bible. But we rail against homosexuals because it’s in Leviticus and briefly mentioned by Paul in Corinthians? That’s one apostle out of 11 (we don’t get to know what Judas said, he was censored good and hard.)

    The Bible belt has higher teen pregnancy rates than the agnostic north. That’s a strange thing for an all-powerful God to do to his people.

    Ricky Gervais recently tweeted that “If all the Atheists & Agnostics left America, they’d lose 93% of The National Academy of Sciences & less than 1% of the prison population.”

    The proof of some magnificent possibility is everywhere. The evidence of the god as described in the Bible is simply nowhere.

    I’ve read this bitch inside out. It’s got some really dark passages.

  9. You’re right, but I never said proof. Real, incontrovertible, proof is only found in mathematics. I was simply trying to argue (in my comments) that faith in a higher power can be reasonable and evidence based, and that the terms scientist and believer aren’t mutually exclusive. As for American Christians and the state of Christianity today, you’re preaching to the choir brother. :)

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