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1 Hawthorne Philosophy- Atheism and Humanism

The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason

by

The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason Cover

ISBN13: 9780393035155
ISBN10: 0393035158
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

This important and timely book delivers a startling analysis of the clash of faith and reason in today's world. Harris offers a vivid historical tour of mankind's willingness to suspend reason in favor of religious beliefs, even when those beliefs are used to justify harmful behavior and sometimes heinous crimes. He asserts that in the shadow of weapons of mass destruction, we can no longer tolerate views that pit one true god against another. Most controversially, he argues that we cannot afford moderate lip service to religion — an accommodation that only blinds us to the real perils of fundamentalism.

While warning against the encroachment of organized religion into world politics, Harris also draws on new evidence from neuroscience and insights from philosophy to explore spirituality as a biological, brain-based need. He calls on us to invoke that need in taking a secular humanistic approach to solving the problems of this world.

Review:

"In this sometimes simplistic and misguided book, Harris calls for the end of religious faith in the modern world. Not only does such faith lack a rational base, he argues, but even the urge for religious toleration allows a too-easy acceptance of the motives of religious fundamentalists. Religious faith, according to Harris, requires its adherents to cling irrationally to mythic stories of ideal paradisiacal worlds (heaven and hell) that provide alternatives to their own everyday worlds. Moreover, innumerable acts of violence, he argues, can be attributed to a religious faith that clings uncritically to one set of dogmas or another. Very simply, religion is a form of terrorism for Harris. Predictably, he argues that a rational and scientific view — one that relies on the power of empirical evidence to support knowledge and understanding — should replace religious faith. We no longer need gods to make laws for us when we can sensibly make them for ourselves. But Harris overstates his case by misunderstanding religious faith, as when he makes the audaciously naïve statement that 'mysticism is a rational enterprise; religion is not.' As William James ably demonstrated, mysticism is far from a rational enterprise, while religion might often require rationality in order to function properly. On balance, Harris's book generalizes so much about both religion and reason that it is ineffectual. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"[I]t is rare in this postmodern age to read a book by someone so vigorously defending rational thought, especially from a unique neuroscientific perspective. Recommended." Library Journal

Review:

"[A] courageous analysis whose theses will deeply trouble readers who choose to think about them rather than summarily reject them....Provocative is too pale a word." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Harris is obviously tickled by his own intelligence — and he writes with such verve and frequent insight that even skeptical readers will find it hard to put down. Besides, we might all check our belief systems for deadwood. Because it touches a nerve, The End of Faith is a good place to begin." San Francisco Chronicle

Review:

"The End of Faith articulates the dangers and absurdities of organized religion so fiercely and so fearlessly that I felt relieved as I read it, vindicated, almost personally understood....This is an important book, on a topic that, for all its inherent difficulty and divisiveness, should not be shielded from the crucible of human reason." Natalie Angier, New York Times Book Review

Synopsis:

An impassioned plea for reason in a world divided by faith.

Synopsis:

Natalie Angier wrote in The New York Times:"The End of Faitharticulates the dangers and absurdities of organized religion so fiercely and so fearlessly that I felt relieved as I read it, vindicated....Harris writes what a sizable number of us think, but few are willing to say."

Synopsis:

Harris offers a vivid historical tour of mankind's willingness to suspend reason in favor of religious beliefs, even when those beliefs are used to justify harmful behavior and sometimes heinous crimes.

About the Author

Sam Harris is a graduate in philosophy from Stanford University.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

joeybass, July 6, 2006 (view all comments by joeybass)
In an era when too many weapons are controlled by people too ready to kill and die for their beliefs, this book is a welcome and important reminder of the absolute necessity to restore a foundation of rationality to our actions before it's too late. Yes, it is anti-Islam. And anti-Christian and anti-Jewish, too. I salute Mr. Harris for having the courage to speak his truth.
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(18 of 30 readers found this comment helpful)
CMSchaefer, May 4, 2006 (view all comments by CMSchaefer)
This is not what I was hoping for. Rather than a well-founded argument against irrational faith, it is a fear-mongering anti-Islamic screed. Filled with misinformation, it goes so far as to say that some people belive such horrible things that we are morally compelled to kill them (pg 53, paper edition). How this is rational is beyond me.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780393035155
Subtitle:
Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason
Author:
Harris, Sam
Publisher:
W. W. Norton & Company
Subject:
General
Subject:
Comparative Religion
Subject:
History
Subject:
Sociology of Religion
Subject:
Psychology of Religion
Subject:
Remarriage
Subject:
Spirituality - General
Subject:
International Relations - General
Subject:
Political Freedom & Security - International Secur
Subject:
Political Freedom & Security - General
Subject:
Terrorism
Subject:
Religion
Subject:
Psychology, Religious
Subject:
Church & State
Subject:
Politics - General
Copyright:
Publication Date:
20040817
Binding:
Hardcover
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
8.6 x 5.9 x 1.1 in 1.085 lb

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Psychology » General
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Politics » Political Science
Humanities » Philosophy » Atheism and Humanism
Humanities » Philosophy » General
Religion » Comparative Religion » General
Religion » Western Religions » Social and Political Issues

The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$8.50 In Stock
Product details 336 pages R.S. Means Company - English 9780393035155 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "In this sometimes simplistic and misguided book, Harris calls for the end of religious faith in the modern world. Not only does such faith lack a rational base, he argues, but even the urge for religious toleration allows a too-easy acceptance of the motives of religious fundamentalists. Religious faith, according to Harris, requires its adherents to cling irrationally to mythic stories of ideal paradisiacal worlds (heaven and hell) that provide alternatives to their own everyday worlds. Moreover, innumerable acts of violence, he argues, can be attributed to a religious faith that clings uncritically to one set of dogmas or another. Very simply, religion is a form of terrorism for Harris. Predictably, he argues that a rational and scientific view — one that relies on the power of empirical evidence to support knowledge and understanding — should replace religious faith. We no longer need gods to make laws for us when we can sensibly make them for ourselves. But Harris overstates his case by misunderstanding religious faith, as when he makes the audaciously naïve statement that 'mysticism is a rational enterprise; religion is not.' As William James ably demonstrated, mysticism is far from a rational enterprise, while religion might often require rationality in order to function properly. On balance, Harris's book generalizes so much about both religion and reason that it is ineffectual. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "[I]t is rare in this postmodern age to read a book by someone so vigorously defending rational thought, especially from a unique neuroscientific perspective. Recommended."
"Review" by , "[A] courageous analysis whose theses will deeply trouble readers who choose to think about them rather than summarily reject them....Provocative is too pale a word."
"Review" by , "Harris is obviously tickled by his own intelligence — and he writes with such verve and frequent insight that even skeptical readers will find it hard to put down. Besides, we might all check our belief systems for deadwood. Because it touches a nerve, The End of Faith is a good place to begin."
"Review" by , "The End of Faith articulates the dangers and absurdities of organized religion so fiercely and so fearlessly that I felt relieved as I read it, vindicated, almost personally understood....This is an important book, on a topic that, for all its inherent difficulty and divisiveness, should not be shielded from the crucible of human reason."
"Synopsis" by , An impassioned plea for reason in a world divided by faith.
"Synopsis" by , Natalie Angier wrote in The New York Times:"The End of Faitharticulates the dangers and absurdities of organized religion so fiercely and so fearlessly that I felt relieved as I read it, vindicated....Harris writes what a sizable number of us think, but few are willing to say."
"Synopsis" by , Harris offers a vivid historical tour of mankind's willingness to suspend reason in favor of religious beliefs, even when those beliefs are used to justify harmful behavior and sometimes heinous crimes.
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