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Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon
Dennett, Daniel C.
An innovative thinker tackles the controversial question of why we believe in God and how religion shapes our lives and our future. For a growing number of people, there is nothing more important than religion. It is an integral part of their marriage, child rearing, and community. In this daring new book, distinguished philosopher Dennett takes a hard look at this phenomenon and asks why. Where does our devotion to God come from and what purpose does it serve? Is religion a blind evolutionary compulsion or a rational choice? In a narrative that ranges widely through history, philosophy, and psychology, Dennett explores how organized religion evolved from folk beliefs and why it is such a potent force today. He contends that the "belief in belief" has fogged any attempt to rationally consider the existence of God and the relationship between divinity and human need.
Faith Vs. Fact: Why Science and Religion Are Incompatible
Coyne, Jerry A.
The New York Times bestselling author of Why Evolution is True explains why any attempt to make religion compatible with science is doomed to fail.In this provocative book, evolutionary biologist Jerry A. Coyne lays out in clear, dispassionate detail why the toolkit of science, based on reason and empirical study, is reliable, while that of religion - including faith, dogma, and revelation - leads to incorrect, untestable, or conflicting conclusions.Coyne is responding to a national climate in which more than half of Americans don’t believe in evolution, members of Congress deny global warming, and long-conquered childhood diseases are reappearing because of religious objections to inoculation, and he warns that religious prejudices in politics, education, medicine, and social policy are on the rise. Extending the bestselling works of Richard Dawkins, Daniel Dennett, and Christopher Hitchens, he demolishes the claims of religion to provide verifiable “truth” by subjecting those claims to the same tests we use to establish truth in science.Coyne irrefutably demonstrates the grave harm - to individuals and to our planet - in mistaking faith for fact in making the most important decisions about the world we live in.
Why Science Does Not Disprove God
Based on interviews with eleven Nobel Prize winners and many other prominent physicists, biologists, anthropologists, and psychologists, as well as leading theologians and spiritual leaders, Why Science Does Not Disprove God is a "well-informed and readable" (Wall Street Journal) analysis of the religious implications of our ever-increasing understanding of life and the universe. The renowned science writer Amir Aczel masterfully refutes the overreaching claims of the "New Atheists," providing millions of educated believers with a clear, engaging explanation of what science really says, how there's still much space for the Divine in the universe, and why faith in both God and empirical science are not mutually exclusive.
Monkey Girl: Evolution, Education, Religion, and the Battle for America's Soul
What should we teach our children about where we come from? Is evolution a lie or good science? Is it incompatible with faith? Have scientists really detected evidence of a creator in nature? From bestselling, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Edward Humes comes a dramatic story of faith, science, and courage unlike any since the famous Scopes Monkey Trial. Monkey Girl takes you behind the scenes of the recent war on evolution in Dover, Pennsylvania, when the town's school board decision to confront the controversy head-on thrust its students, then the entire community, onto the front lines of America's culture wars. Told from the perspectives of all sides of the battle, it is a riveting true story about an epic court case on the teaching of "intelligent design," and what happens when science and religion collide.
The Human Instinct: How We Evolved to Have Reason, Consciousness, and Free Will
Miller, Kenneth R.
A radical, optimistic exploration of how humans evolved to develop reason, consciousness, and free will.Lately, the most passionate advocates of the theory of evolution seem to present it as bad news. Scientists such as Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, and Sam Harris tell us that our most intimate actions, thoughts, and values are mere byproducts of thousands of generations of mindless adaptation. We are just one species among multitudes, and therefore no more significant than any other living creature.Now comes Brown University biologist Kenneth R. Miller to make the case that this view betrays a gross misunderstanding of evolution. Natural selection surely explains how our bodies and brains were shaped, but Miller argues that it’s not a social or cultural theory of everything. In The Human Instinct, he rejects the idea that our biological heritage means that human thought, action, and imagination are pre-determined, describing instead the trajectory that ultimately gave us reason, consciousness and free will. A proper understanding of evolution, he says, reveals humankind in its glorious uniqueness - one foot planted firmly among all of the creatures we’ve evolved alongside, and the other in the special place of self-awareness and understanding that we alone occupy in the universe.Equal parts natural science and philosophy, The Human Instinct is a moving and powerful celebration of what it means to be human.
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