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An Intelligent Person's Guide to Religion download epub

by John Haldane


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Drawing on many aspects of human culture, John Haldane offers a defence of religion as not only credible, but necessary, exploring the place of religion in relation to science, in making sense of evil, in understanding history and in explaining value

Drawing on many aspects of human culture, John Haldane offers a defence of religion as not only credible, but necessary, exploring the place of religion in relation to science, in making sense of evil, in understanding history and in explaining value. To read this book, upload an EPUB or FB2 file to Bookmate.

An Intelligent Person's . .has been added to your Cart. John Haldane's elegant and measured prose creates distance between this book and the usual run of culture wars agit-prop, but unfortunately the metaphor of old wine in new bottles applies

An Intelligent Person's . John Haldane's elegant and measured prose creates distance between this book and the usual run of culture wars agit-prop, but unfortunately the metaphor of old wine in new bottles applies. To illustrate, here is the blunt version of the Christian view of the 9/11 atrocities, as delivered by Jerry Falwell shortly after the event: I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America.

Robert Grant is sceptical about John Haldane's update of Aquinas in An Intelligent Person's Guide to Religion. In some religions - those of China, Japan and ancient Greece, say - belief is indistinguishable from practice, amounting to little more than piety, ritual and customary morality. Other creeds, especially the great Middle Eastern monotheisms, offer systematic answers to the grand, overarching questions. Science has more than once shaken Christianity to its foundations, while Islam and Judaism escaped relatively unharmed.

John Haldane is a Catholic, but this book is not limited to Christian theism at all. Rather, Haldane offers compelling reasons for why religious orientation makes sense and ultimately allows for the fullest possibility of human flourishing

John Haldane is a Catholic, but this book is not limited to Christian theism at all. Rather, Haldane offers compelling reasons for why religious orientation makes sense and ultimately allows for the fullest possibility of human flourishing. He does not cover every topic of interest in religion, but he does explore questions of science and religion, evil, history, aesthetics, death, axiology, and sociology. Nov 15, 2016 Marco rated it really liked it.

224 pages ; 18 cm. "What use is religion in the modern world? From the Enlightenment, philosophers have stripped faith of its claim to being part of human knowledge. But since the dismantling of religion, the ancient and enduring questions about the meaning of our existence - questions that haunt all of us at some point during our lives - have never been adequately answered. Drawing on many aspects of human culture, John Haldane offers a defence of religion as not only credible but necessary.

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Publisher: Duckworth Overlook. Print ISBN: 9780715628676, 0715628674. eTextbook Return Policy. These books conform to EPUB3 industry standards. Reflowable eTextbooks support a wide range of features, including (but not limited to): notes, highlights, text-to-speech, printing, syncing across devices, and more. Note: Some Reflowable eTextbooks are designed to mimic fixed layout. Reflowable eTextbooks do not maintain the layout of a traditional bound book.

University of London. Peter Gan Chong Beng, J. L. A. West, Peter Drum, Peter Wong Yih Jiun & Reg Naulty - 2006 - Sophia 45 (2):143-152. Similar books and articles. Added to PP index 2015-02-13. Total views 0. Recent downloads (6 months) 0. How can I increase my downloads? Downloads. Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.

An Intelligent Person’s Guide to Religion. Haldane, John (2002). Mind, Metaphysics and Value in the Thomistic and Analytical Traditions. Seeking Meaning and Making Sense. Notre Dame, IN: UNDP. Stephen Read, ed. (2002). The Philosophy of Thomas Reid. Download as PDF. Printable version.

An Intelligent Person's Guide to Religion John Haldane Snippet view - 2003. J. C. Smart is Emeritus Professor at the Australian National University. He is the author of many books, including Philosophy and Scientific Realism, Ethics, Persuasion and Truth and (with Bernard Williams) Utilitarianism: For and Against. Bibliographic information. Atheism and Theism Volume 1 of Great Debates in Philosophy. Smart, J. Haldane.

John Haldane An Intelligent Person's Guide to Religion (London: Duckworth, 2003). Peter Gallagher (a1). Lecturer in philosophy at Heythrop College, University of London. Published online by Cambridge University Press: 22 July 2009.

We live, allegedly, in a postmodern age in which we have cast aside the narrative fantasies of the pre-modern era. If postmodernism represents the final abandonment of all grand theories, where does religion stand? If religion is a particularly unbelievable form of explanation, why does it power still affect social and political change? Here, like the skeptics of our age, the author asks, What has theology ever had to say that was of the slightest use to anyone? He argues that religion without God is like a car without an engine, and draws on many aspects of human culture to offer a defense of religion that is not only credible but necessary in an age when postmodernism itself has been exposed as a cruel illusion.

Comments: (6)

Huston
How pleasant to have an academic Christian find faith in God through Jesus confirmed, rather than misplaced in deception. Step by step, logic and faith are shown to be brothers. Righteousness and peace kiss each other. What the Spirit has taught believers for thousands of years to be true, remains true. Now that our Western culture has gone mad with deception running at will, John Haldane brings in light to illuminate the mind and soul of the reader. Thoroughly researched, and interestingly written. Now wish I could audit Dr. Haldane's philosophy class in person. Nice work, John.
Ishnllador
This brief little book contains essays rich in theological wisdom, presented in a clear and methodical manner. I will most certainly move on up to his "Reasonable Faith" from here.
Longitude Temporary
This should be a required reading for anyone who attempots to engage in an intellectually responsible way with a matter as debated as it is religion nowadays.
Xirmiu
It has often been said that the likes of love and humour are best enjoyed and that any attempt to analyse what makes them tick tends to stop them working. It could be argued that this book comes very close to demonstrating that religion is also in this category.
Professor Haldane is a very lucid writer and he presents his arguments very clearly. Consequently, it is easy to see that his intention is to present a religious "Theory of everything" that lays claim to being able to explain all aspects of the human condition. A key tool that he uses in this endeavour is his concept of "Religious Logic" (RL) and a formal theory of this could be developed. After all, such things have been done before.
Since Galileo won the battle about the Earth being in orbit around the sun, religion has been retreating from rational logical arguments into the shadowy areas of mystery where the unknown reigns supreme. It has had to do this because the scientific method has proved its superiority over Biblical revelation in so many ways and tends not to make claims that it can't substantiate. Haldane's RL rejects all this and presents its own formalism for understanding the world. Inevitably, those of his intelligent readership who are familiar with conventional logic (L) will compare this with RL and, in so doing, they will provide themselves with access to one of the delights that ownership of this book can bestow.
Take, for example, Haldane's "proofs" of the existence of God. His first RL argument is essentially as follows: Michael Behe said in his book (Darwin's Black Box) that a biological structure is "irreducibly complex" if it cannot be produced by incremental improvements to an initial function "which continues to work by the same mechanism".
This "Argument from Biochemistry" isn't powerful enough for Haldane so he proceeds to "strengthen it by an RL decree":
HALDANE: "as one who sympathises with the older medieval ambition to arrive at conclusive proofs I am inclined to treat it in the stronger way summarised as follows.."
So: Galileo's insistence that "sympathy" and "inclination" should be specifically excluded from the scientific method in favour of objective measurement is swept aside, the humble (but interesting) bacterial flagellum is irreducibly complex and, in consequence, God is proved to exist. Such is the power of RL theory.
In taking this step, Haldane rushes in where Behe (and presumably Angels) fear to tread. We now know that there is strong evidence that the bacterial flagellum evolved from the Type III secretory system via an intermediate structure that provided the dual functions of secretion and propulsion. Consequently, by virtue of his "which continues to work by the same mechanism" Behe can shrug and walk off to try (yet again) to find an instance of his irreducible complexity elsewhere. However, Haldane fails to provide a similar "escape caveat" and his RL claims that such counter arguments do not, and cannot exist, are easily refuted by a quick Web search.
His other "proof" is also flawed. He argues, in effect, that the theory of evolution can't explain Adam's existence as a biologically modern human. This of course, is true but only RL concludes from this that the theory of evolution is wrong. L does things the other way around.
The RL case for superiority over L and all things scientific continues in a similar fashion throughout the rest of the book and it makes fascinating reading. Especially the chapter on evil where RL claims that the darker side of sex is a consequence of apple stealing in Eden and that Dawkins' Selfish Gene L theory can't explain it. In consequence, I strongly recommend this book to all intelligent readers who are interested in the relationship between RL and L and which of these should be their guide in conducting the affairs of life. Haldane's lucid style makes the answer to this very important question very easy to arrive at.
Brialelis
John Haldane's elegant and measured prose creates distance between this book and the usual run of culture wars agit-prop, but unfortunately the metaphor of old wine in new bottles applies.

To illustrate, here is the blunt version of the Christian view of the 9/11 atrocities, as delivered by Jerry Falwell shortly after the event:

I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People For the American Way, all of them who have tried to secularize America. I point the finger in their face and say 'you helped this happen.' (700 Club, 9/14/2001)

Here is Haldane's elegantly euphemized presentation of the exact same conclusion:

Mankind's inherited fallenness leads to a darkening of the intellect and a disturbance of the passions which, particularly when raised to social and cultural levels, make great evils possible. (p. 121)

Do note that the chapter featuring this sentence references Falwell's statement and discusses the 9/11 attacks, so I am not distorting the context.

The flip side of the elegance of Haldane's prose is the way in which it obscures the human reality in vaporous abstractions -- a defect refreshingly absent from Falwell's in-your-face version.

I think it is incumbent on us to imagine the terror and pain of the people killed and maimed on 9/11, and that of those they left behind, when weighing statements like this. We need to put nice phrases aside and ask whether, on a starkly human level, we are prepared to accept a god that "lifts his protection" and permits such suffering to happen. Is this truly what an `intelligent person' should expect from omniscience, omnipresence, and perfect love? Haldane's answer is yes: sometimes god feels the need to make a point about larger socio-political trends, and that may require snuffing out a few thousand individuals. For reasons Haldane fails to state, god couldn't write a pamphlet in the DNA of a fish, render a booming statement from the sky, send a messenger of absolutely unambiguous origins, etc. No, the omniscient and loving god chose 9/11 to register his feelings on gays, abortions, and shellfish consumption.

None of which serves to refute the cosmology, of course. Reality may be as Haldane believes it to be, but if so, this book presents no positive evidence for it. The "theory" of social and historical change outlined above is entirely unfalsifiable. If (say) Spain, Canada, and Belgium suffer no apparent decline as a result of legalizing gay marriage, it will just mean god is back to his mysterious ways again. Or that it was metaphorical after all, or that god has only delayed his wrath, or that their transgression is its own punishment somehow, or what have you.

Stylistically, this is a good read, but a lovely writing style does not erase the nastiness of the cosmology, or fill in its holes. Well-phrased nonsense is still nonsense.
Banal
A little too rambley for my patience, but worth powering through to read it.
An Intelligent Person's Guide to Religion download epub
World
Author: John Haldane
ISBN: 1585677221
Category: History
Subcategory: World
Language: English
Publisher: Overlook Books (October 25, 2005)
Pages: 224 pages