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The Book of Atheist Spirituality Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
The first, "Can We Do Without Religion?" looks at where religion draws some of it's strengths from. His conclusions centre around religion as a way of life, which he states is the most important thing it offers. Yet, he also points out that these, like morality and communality are not exclusive to religion. He is also realsitic about how both religion and unreligion have been used to justify atrocities.
The second, on whether there is a God, looks at traditional arguments for the existence of a deity. These are presented clearly, without heckling. They are arguments that both believers and non-believers need to ponder on when reaching their position, as are his arguments as to why he cannot believe in a God. Most of these arguments are not new, but the account of them, could not be bettered. Believers are are unlikely to be offended by them. As Comte-Sponville states, the only agenda he has here is the right to voice his view point.
The final essay looks at the posibility of an athiest spirituality. He draws on Eastern Spiritual texts, pointing that they are less dependent on conceptions of a god. He looks at forms of spiritual experience, and describes some of his own experiences in this area and argues that this is "not God." This may well be the most personal aspect of the book.Read more ›
The chapter order in itself is enlightening: 1. Can we do without religion? 2. Does God exist? 3. Can there be an atheist spirituality? (You'd think, wouldn't you, that to settle the issue of God's existence might come first?) Of course, the assumption in chapter 1 is that God does not exist, but the motivation in this writing is to repel religiosity. Yet having discarded this irritant religion, the author knows he needs something spiritual in his life. There is great pathos in this book; very touching, very human.
The first few pages of chapter one are taken up with defining 'religion', before deciding that it is the imposed dogma and implied obscurantism of received religion that the author really dislikes. So, he concludes that he wants fidelity without faith; he yearns for true community and understands how religion binds people together, but obviously cannot accept the superstition and blind faith associated with much religion. In fact, from the outset he is very ambiguous about the eastern religions (Buddhism, Taoism, Confucionism) but really has monotheism in mind - especially his own childhood catholicism. But how does he construct meaning and purpose once God has been discarded? How does he substantiate his need for fidelity and community?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book is thought provoking and at times amusing. The author is balanced in his views about religion and atheism. Not the easiest read.Published 22 months ago by Mr. Stewart Davie
I read this and it was so smug that I now think atheism is a fools idea.Published 22 months ago by Mr. Anthony J. Hume
I enjoyed this book and it's well written and constructed but I felt at the end of the day it was both a little hollow and struggling to define spirituality without actually... Read morePublished 23 months ago by P Z Whoops
The world is full of religious fueled violence, this beautiful book offers a glimpse of what humanity should aspire to, what a better, happier world we would live in. Read morePublished on 17 Jun. 2014 by Pippa Witt
This is a book that should be read by believers. Atheists, Agnostics and anyone who wants to expire secular spirituality. It is thought provoking, challenging, and inspiring. Read morePublished on 7 Oct. 2012 by Billy Byrne
This book in split into three parts. Firstly, there is an analysis of what religion is and if we can live without it. This part is excellent. Read morePublished on 31 Dec. 2010 by Alex Ireland
Let`s start by saying that I am not an atheist. This is a very impressive book and should bring a blush to the cheek of Dawkins, Hitchens et al. Read morePublished on 24 Feb. 2010 by F. Roberts
I could not put this book down once I got into it. The author discusses the arguments extraordinarily lucidly. Read morePublished on 25 Nov. 2009 by Simian