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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Truth About Religion!
The opening dialogue on religion, and the essay's on Ethics, Psychology, Religion, are for me the most thought provoking texts that I have read for a very long time. As the title suggests, Schopenhauer delves into the very hart of the absurdities of Religion and all it's fabrications of morality and false piety, and his statement of "In the eyes of the friend of truth...
Published on 30 Oct. 2012 by F. I. Cooper

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13 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good fun but underdeveloped.
This is a pocket-book collection of five essays, translated by R J Hollingdale in 1970. Penguin lazily provide no background information whatsoever, not even dates, let alone context, so I have no idea whether these were spread across decades of Schopenhauer's career or written all at one go.

The first essay, "On Religion: A Dialogue", is the best, being a fair...
Published on 19 Jun. 2011 by Jason Mills


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Truth About Religion!, 30 Oct. 2012
By 
F. I. Cooper (Bradford, West Yorkshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas) (Paperback)
The opening dialogue on religion, and the essay's on Ethics, Psychology, Religion, are for me the most thought provoking texts that I have read for a very long time. As the title suggests, Schopenhauer delves into the very hart of the absurdities of Religion and all it's fabrications of morality and false piety, and his statement of "In the eyes of the friend of truth every fraud,However pious, is still a fraud." is absolutely true. This idea of a self arising God is utterly ludicrous as the world is constantly changing, the universe is constantly changing, to the extent that nothing can ever stay the same. Religion, on the other hand, preaches absolute constants which is utterly ludicrous, there are no absolute constants. The universe is irrevocably changing every second, you can only go forwards, you cannot go backwards, everything follows the Arrow of Time to the complete and utter destruction of the universe itself. Read this book as a priority it is very well written.The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas)
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars very enjoyable, 28 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas) (Paperback)
this book made me laugh out loud at times because I was thinking about the reaction Schopnhauer might get if he had some of those views and expressed them now. lots of things have moved on since that time but I really appreciated how once people were able to express beliefs of their own in such a public way and this was then open for debate by others- I cant imagine a book of this kind would get published today
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13 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good fun but underdeveloped., 19 Jun. 2011
By 
Jason Mills "jason10801" (Accrington, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas) (Paperback)
This is a pocket-book collection of five essays, translated by R J Hollingdale in 1970. Penguin lazily provide no background information whatsoever, not even dates, let alone context, so I have no idea whether these were spread across decades of Schopenhauer's career or written all at one go.

The first essay, "On Religion: A Dialogue", is the best, being a fair and shrewd discussion of the utility of religion. The next, "On Ethics", is perhaps the worst, packed with spurious claims and special pleading that would require a much longer work to justify. There's also a startling pomposity in its pronouncements, particularly this one:

"After my prize essay on moral freedom no thinking person can remain in any doubt that moral freedom is never to be sought in nature but only outside of nature."

No thinking person can doubt..? Is this a joke, or the arrogance or youth, or was the author an insufferable prig?

The remaining three essays are "On Psychology", "On Religion" and "On Various Subjects". All the essays, bar the dialogue, are in choppy bite-size pieces, which makes for easy reading. Schopenhauer does make some arresting observations, aspiring to aphorisms:

"If you want to know how you really feel about someone take note of the impression an unexpected letter from him makes on you when you first see it on the doormat."

I enjoyed his dissection of the particular problems faced by christian theologians in attempting to reconcile their scriptures, and there is much in here that is striking. Equally, however, much is simply asserted without philosophical rigour, and the essays make little effort to develop substantial arguments. This is not, then (I would guess), a representative summation of his philosophy, but simply a spicy taster.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting read., 3 Feb. 2014
This book gave a clear philosophical outline of the absurdity of religion. The translation did however tend to seem a little clumsy in construction with over-long sentences. All belief and faith is irrational and simply a (mis)perception, whether ideological or religious. The book should be considered in that context.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good buy at the price, 11 Aug. 2013
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This review is from: The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas) (Paperback)
Excellent book by a great author. No need to be a philosopher to read and understand it. Schopenhauer offers an almost unique and persuasive view of life and the world
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The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas)
The Horrors and Absurdities of Religion (Penguin Great Ideas) by Arthur Schopenhauer (Paperback - 27 Aug. 2009)
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