October 1, 2005
October 1, 2005
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. Natalie Angier wrote in The New York Times: "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. Harris writes what a sizable number of us think, but few are willing to say."
In a post-9/11 polemic, Sam Harris takes an absolutist stand against religion and the link between blind faith, fundamentalism, and theocracy. Harris cites what he sees as the violence-drenched holy texts of major religions to underscore the connections between religion and terror. Criticizing both Islam and Christianity throughout, Harris would relegate religion to the same status as we now view, for example, the Roman gods. He would replace religion with reason, and he would turn to Eastern thought for a more fully developed spirituality. Addressing objections from those who favor a "moderate religion" or religion when separated from state, he says this is mere accommodation. Acknowledging that acts of charity currently done in the name of religion have a positive end, he says that in a world of reason and ethics these would still take place. Outrageous at first, Harris gradually builds a strong case for, as he says, the end of faith and the future of reason.
- Genre: Philosophy, Religion + Beliefs, Political Science, Psychology
- Subgenre: Movements / Rationalism, Political Freedom / International Security, General
- Edition: Reprint
- Language: English
- Author: Sam Harris
- Online Item #: 11338371
- Store Item Number (DPCI): 248-00-6382
- ISBN: 9780393327656
- Item can be gift wrapped.
- Made in the USA or Imported