Thanks Alex, Loved this interview! Very illuminating and a little depressing, but I'll take it as my oun personal call to action. My thoughts about your question are: What George Bush's "conversion" says about the US is that as a nation, the fundamentalist Christian relgion is very well organized and powerful and that its faith based aspect makes it a powerful tool to manipulate a great number of people, an aspect that is fully exploited by powerful interests who don't necessarily buy their relious dogma. The "cultural battle" between science and relgion is a conflict constructed by those same powerful interests to maintain control by disparaging any rational debate that might interfere with their interests or could turn public opinion against them. As an aside: Alex, after listening to most of your podcasts, I wish you'd do this more often; draw the distinction between spiritualilty and relgion with your guests. These two terms are constantly conflated in the media and in arguments and really have little to do with each other and yet are constantly either used interchangeably or comingled --especially when it comes to the sceptics, many of whom seem to be disillusioned former relgious adherents or were brought up in a household with constrictive religious rules (which is why I think they rail against the notion of "God" or "Spirit.) Religion is a human construct that is basically a social order. The foundings of any relgion may have occurred with the founder's spiritual event,but once that "exerience" is codified into a religious dogma, it is generally a bunch of social rules and a heirarchy meant to control or collect money and power (like most other institutions.) Spirit or expanded consciouness as we are exploring it, on the other hand, we can assume has always been and always will be, with or without humans, and seems to be a foundational (or THE foundational) property of the universe. Skeptics seem to do the knee jerk reaction thing by applying the logical absurdities of relgious tradition to any discussion of spirit or consciouness or God. When you and your guests are arguing about spirit, God, consciousness etc., get them to define their terms -- what does the term mean to them?