What I'm Listening to: Ask Science Mike
A weekly podcast answering questions about science, faith, and life.
Mike McHargue is a self-described spiritual skeptic and Christian mystic who writes and talks about the intersection of science and faith in our modern world. As you may have guessed, Ask Science Mike is a show where listeners send in their questions about science, faith or life and Mike answers them.
McHargue doesn't posses any kind of official credentials in science or theology, but that doesn't stop him from providing thoughtful, well-researched and thought-provoking answers on a weekly basis. One of Mike's primary messages is that science and spirituality can coexist. You don't have to reject science or see it as a threat in order to keep your faith. Ask Science Mike can help navigate this intersection that society has made so messy. The waters can get a little murky and that's ok; sometimes it's healthiest to accept that we simply don't have all the answers.
In addition to the more straightforward, objective questions, Ask Science Mike provides a safe place for people to bring up subjects that they don't normally feel comfortable discussing. Mike doesn't shy away from touchy subject like racism, pornography, and doubt. Ask Science Mike provides some of the most sincere, insightful, and humble perspectives I've heard and on these important topics.
Please don't be scared off if you're not into religion; a large portion of Ask Science Mike is focussed on purely science-related questions. The remaining majority of the questions contemplate the intersection of science and faith. Though I should give fair warning that there are some questions that really are purely concerned with spirituality. If that's not your cup of tea, the topics are conveniently included in the episode titles so it's easy to skip around through the backlog to find something that piques your interest.
The Ask Science Mike audience includes people from all sorts of backgrounds and religions; including atheists and agnostics. The main ongoing themes that Mike stresses are acknowledging skepticism, alleviating unhealthy shame and fostering peace. I think those are ideas we can all get behind. And don't feel like you have to agree with Mr. McHargue on everything in order to enjoy and learn from his show, I certainly don't.
The production of Ask Science Mike is excellent with great audio quality and comfortable pacing. It also has what may be the catchiest intro song in podcasting. I feel like an idiot singing along in my car, but I just can't help myself.
The Cover Art
I liked the Ask Science Mike cover art as soon as I saw it. Nothing says "science" like a rocket blasting into space, right? The clean, white vector shapes pop off the background very nicely and the bold san-serif font fits the theme perfectly. Legibility is good, even at small sizes and the simplicity of the illustration makes it easily recognizable. The colors in the galaxy background add some visual interest without distracting from the focal point of the layout.
All-in-all this is a very effective and professional cover design that reflects well on the podcast itself.
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