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Christianity without God: Moving beyond the Dogmas and Retrieving the Epic Moral Narrative Paperback – 1 Oct 2014


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Review

Once again Dan Maguire s new book is at the cutting edge. Passionate, yet crystal clear, "Christianity without God" distills the essential Christian message from the mythological and theological accretions that have distorted it. It s a message we need today, more than ever. David R. Loy, author of "Awareness Bound and Unbound: Buddhist Essays"
For many of us, Maguire s book will be a kind of homecoming. Someone, at last, has had the courage to write what so many of us have been thinking. John C. Raines, author of "The Justice Men Owe Women: Positive Resources from World Religions"
With immense learning and considerable charm, Daniel Maguire evokes a Christianity freed from dogma, literalism, self-righteousness, and terror. Believers and skeptics alike can delight in what s left: poetry, morality, a sense of awe and wonder. In a word, humanity. Katha Pollitt, author of "The Mind-Body Problem: Poems""

[a] well-thought case Both atheists and theists will appreciate a revamped view of Christianity relevant to today s fraught world. "WATER"
Once again Dan Maguire s new book is at the cutting edge. Passionate, yet crystal clear, "Christianity without God" distills the essential Christian message from the mythological and theological accretions that have distorted it. It s a message we need today, more than ever. David R. Loy, author of "Awareness Bound and Unbound: Buddhist Essays"
For many of us, Maguire s book will be a kind of homecoming. Someone, at last, has had the courage to write what so many of us have been thinking. John C. Raines, author of "The Justice Men Owe Women: Positive Resources from World Religions"
With immense learning and considerable charm, Daniel Maguire evokes a Christianity freed from dogma, literalism, self-righteousness, and terror. Believers and skeptics alike can delight in what s left: poetry, morality, a sense of awe and wonder. In a word, humanity. Katha Pollitt, author of "The Mind-Body Problem: Poems""

About the Author

Daniel C. Maguire is Professor of Ethics at Marquette University and the author or editor of many books, including (with Larry L. Rasmussen) Ethics for a Small Planet: New Horizons on Population, Consumption, and Ecology, also published by SUNY Press.


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Amazon.com: HASH(0x98766f18) out of 5 stars 34 reviews
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x981e2ab0) out of 5 stars Stop, Look , Listen 3 Nov. 2014
By John S. Wintermyer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dan Maguire challenges all the doctrines upon which the Church has "rested its case" concerning the Divinity of Jesus and in faqct the very basis of "a God" or of "divine presence" somehow functioning in our world and so in the many religious communities which claim "they speak for God".
We are truly ignorant of the development of the "Hebrew and Christian Scriptures". We have allowed institutions to give the basis of what is found in these writings. Modern scholarship has put into question most of the presmises upon which these institutions have been founded.
Did Jesus ever set out to "found a Church"??? Did he really "ordain priests" at the last supper? Did he really appoint Peter as "head of the Church"??? And did he simply ignore the role of women in his early community and did they just "serve and wait on the table" for the "boys"??
Dan gives us a lot to think about and added to the pursuit of real scholarship we have a lot of questions to challenge the basic belief system of most of the religious communities of our day.
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x98b470cc) out of 5 stars Maguire speaks truth boldly 1 Dec. 2014
By Joseph P. Mahon - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Daniel Maguire clearly makes the point for Christianity without God. Having read the book twice, my reaction was that I now have no one to talk to when I need help; however, a weight has been lifted from me. For a long time I have had the sense that God is not up there and out there awaiting discovery by a NASA space probe. Bishop Spong says that God is not out there waiting to come down and rescue us.
My study of Thomas Merton tells me that God, the Love that energizes the cosmos, dwells deep within me. Life is a struggle to embrace Life-Love and overcome the survival instinct. Hence morality. We are not here for ourselves. We are here for others. The poetic metaphor of the world's varied scriptures inspires us to become what we are. We are about justice making where everyone has enough. We are in Brueggemann's words on a journey to the common good.
I highly recommend this book.
13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9931e138) out of 5 stars How to replace the old doctrines 27 Nov. 2014
By Wally Weet - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Maguire's book is a prophetic work that leads the way to a profoundly reformed Christianity. It may take another century or more to get to that new reformation but it is destined. Superstition was once the only way, now with the revelations of science about nature and the cosmos, the old dispensations merely unravel if taken literally, but if taken as metaphor and poetry they are strong and profound. Maguire also challenges the Secular Humanists to curb their anger and use the poets and poetry of the Old Testament to practice a new compassion that will end the domination of the One Percent and practice the teachings of Jesus the man and prophet. This book is a must for anyone angry with religion as practiced now.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x989db1ec) out of 5 stars Yeah, Christianity has a place in a post-god society. But I'm not convinced the Bible deserved to. 4 Mar. 2015
By Cody B Dicken - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I picked this up as I too have had a vision of Christianity contributing to post-god society. I really did not know what to expect though, and figured it would be a thesis on how to make the cultural transition---present imagery of how it could look. Well, that is not what this is. But despite the path taking the unsuspecting course, it was an attention grabber. First and foremost because Macguire has a brilliant and dynamic writing style. I will definitely be looking for more of his work just to be tickled by the artistry of his language.

Fitting his style, Maguire does paint ONE way forward---a compelling argument that the ancients were a brilliant bunch that capably expressed deeply meaningful writings for the purpose of social evolution. In the process it provides a soft landing for a 'literal' to a 'symbolic' interpretation of the Bible. But rather than any sort of a manifesto (which we desperately need) it is an uncommon and quite interesting perspective on the ancients.

If nothing else, read this book and more than likely you will gain some useful lenses through which to frame the Israelites. This always comes in handy when trying to expand the minds of your biblical literalist friends. But when you separate the wheat from the chaff, the troubles of the Bible don't outweigh the heinous destruction its words still echo with today.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x984eca20) out of 5 stars Not Worthy of a Scholar 28 July 2015
By Barbara Fiand - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Whereas chapters 11 and 12 as well as the Epilogue clearly demonstrate Maguire's gifts as a ethicist, I found the earlier chapters as a whole painful to read. They are in my estimation often glib, sarcastic, and high-handed in their approach to the development of Christianity as a whole. Whereas I agree with Maguire that we need to move beyond the dogmatic approach of previous centuries and the format in which faith was expressed at that time, I do not appreciate the seeming lack of respect and inappropriate humor in his discussion of history. He rarely mentions the context in which the dogmas were formulated and, if he does, he often ridicules rather than explains. His understanding of mysticism is sorely inadequate. The use of "logic" to dismiss experiences where language struggles and often fails in the face of mystery, and then to dismiss what he does not really grasp and very likely has never experienced himself is sad. Just because words fail in the face of a powerful experience does not mean that it is meaningless or should be dismissed. I must say that I was eager to read the book and am sadly disappointed.
Barbara Fiand, Ph.D.
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