Synopses & Reviews
Continuing in the tradition of his well-received Religious Reason, Ronald Green here offers a penetrating moral understanding of religious belief and practice. Human religiousness, he contends, principally arises from a universal "deep structure" of moral reasoning that comprises three essential elements: one guides impartial moral reasoning; a second affirms the reality of moral retribution; and a third provides escape from the penalties that justly accompany unavoidable human moral failure. Using this innovative approach, Green confronts a series of different religious traditions and issues, including African primal religions, classical Chinese religion, the "Divine Command" tradition in Judaism and Christianity, religious ritual, and the economic teachings of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism. Drawing on contemporary rationalist ethical theory, Green provides a simple but effective model for understanding the complexity of religious life.
This book examines the rational basis of moral and ethical beliefs in the world's great religious traditions: Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Christianity, and the traditional religions of China and Africa. It is in effect a sequel to the same author's Religious Reason (OUP 1978), which was hailed as 'one of the most important books in ethics and religious studies of the decade'.