Author: Richard Cimino
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Release Date: 2014
"According to Cimino and Smith, the new upsurge of atheists is a reaction to the revival of religious fervor in American politics since 1980. Feeling overlooked and underrepresented in the public sphere, atheists have employed a wide variety of strategies--some evangelical, some based on identity politics--to defend and assert themselves against their ideological opponents. These strategies include building and maintaining communities, despite the absence of the kinds of shared rituals, texts, and laws that help to sustain organized religions. Drawing on in-depth interviews with self-identified atheist, secularist, and humanist leaders and activists, as well as extensive observations and analysis of secular gatherings and media, Cimino and Smith illustrate how atheists organize and align themselves toward common goals, and how media--particularly web-based media--have proven invaluable in connecting atheists to one another and in creating a powerful virtual community. Cimino and Smith suggest that secularists rely not only on the Internet for community-building, but on their own new forms of ritual."--Publisher's Web site.
Author: Sam Harris
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release Date: 2014-09-09
Genre: Body, Mind & Spirit
For the millions of Americans who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’s latest New York Times bestseller is a guide to meditation as a rational practice informed by neuroscience and psychology. From Sam Harris, neuroscientist and author of numerous New York Times bestselling books, Waking Up is for the twenty percent of Americans who follow no religion but who suspect that important truths can be found in the experiences of such figures as Jesus, the Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history. Throughout this book, Harris argues that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow, and that how we pay attention to the present moment largely determines the quality of our lives. Waking Up is part memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris—a scientist, philosopher, and famous skeptic—could write it.
Author: Isaac Kramnick
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Release Date: 2018-08-21
Genre: Political Science
If the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects religious liberty, why doesn’t it protect atheists? God occupies our nation’s consciousness, even defining to many what it means to be American. Nonbelievers have often had second-class legal status and have had to fight for their rights as citizens. As R. Laurence Moore and Isaac Kramnick demonstrate in their sharp and convincing work, avowed atheists were derided since the founding of the nation. Even Thomas Paine fell into disfavor and his role as a patriot forgotten. Popular Republican Robert Ingersoll could not be elected in the nineteenth century due to his atheism, and the suffragette Elizabeth Cady Stanton was shunned when she questioned biblical precepts about women’s roles. Moore and Kramnick lay out this fascinating history and the legal cases that have questioned religious supremacy. It took until 1961 for the Supreme Court to ban religious tests for state officials, despite Article 6 of the Constitution. Still, every one of the fifty states continues to have God in its constitution. The authors discuss these cases and more current ones, such as Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., which address whether personal religious beliefs supersede secular ones. In Godless Citizens in a Godly Republic, the authors also explore the dramatic rise of an "atheist awakening" and the role of organizations intent on holding the country to the secular principles it was founded upon.
Does Buddhism require faith? Can an atheist or agnostic follow the Buddha’s teachings without believing in reincarnation or organized religion? This is one man’s confession. In his classic Buddhism Without Beliefs, Stephen Batchelor offered a profound, secular approach to the teachings of the Buddha that struck an emotional chord with Western readers. Now, with the same brilliance and boldness of thought, he paints a groundbreaking portrait of the historical Buddha—told from the author’s unique perspective as a former Buddhist monk and modern seeker. Drawing from the original Pali Canon, the seminal collection of Buddhist discourses compiled after the Buddha’s death by his followers, Batchelor shows us the Buddha as a flesh-and-blood man who looked at life in a radically new way. Batchelor also reveals the everyday challenges and doubts of his own devotional journey—from meeting the Dalai Lama in India, to training as a Zen monk in Korea, to finding his path as a lay teacher of Buddhism living in France. Both controversial and deeply personal, Stephen Batchelor’s refreshingly doctrine-free, life-informed account is essential reading for anyone interested in Buddhism.
In this study of new atheism and religious fundamentalism, this book advances two provocative - and surprising - arguments. Liam Jerrold Fraser argues that atheism and Protestant fundamentalism in Britain and America share a common historical origin in the English Reformation, and the crisis of authority inaugurated by the Reformers. This common origin generated two presuppositions crucial for both movements: a literalist understanding of scripture, and a disruptive understanding of divine activity in nature. Through an analysis of contemporary new atheist and Protestant fundamentalist texts, Fraser shows that these presuppositions continue to structure both groups, and support a range of shared biblical, scientific, and theological beliefs. Their common historical and intellectual structure ensures that new atheism and Protestant fundamentalism - while on the surface irreconcilably opposed - share a secret sympathy with one another, yet one which leaves them unstable, inconsistent, and unsustainable.
A national bestseller and acclaimed guide to Buddhism for beginners and practitioners alike In this simple but important volume, Stephen Batchelor reminds us that the Buddha was not a mystic who claimed privileged, esoteric knowledge of the universe, but a man who challenged us to understand the nature of anguish, let go of its origins, and bring into being a way of life that is available to us all. The concepts and practices of Buddhism, says Batchelor, are not something to believe in but something to do—and as he explains clearly and compellingly, it is a practice that we can engage in, regardless of our background or beliefs, as we live every day on the path to spiritual enlightenment.
Author: Richard J. Meagher
Publisher: Lexington Books
Release Date: 2018-02-05
Genre: Political Science
Today atheists, it seems, are everywhere. Nonbelievers write best-selling books and proudly defend their views in public; they have even hired a lobbyist. But, as political scientist Richard J. Meagher shows, atheist political activism is not a new phenomenon. From the "Freethought" movement of the late 1800s, to postwar "rationalists" and "humanists," to today's proud atheists, nonbelievers have called for change within a resistant political culture. While atheist organizing typically has been a relatively lonely and sad affair, advances in technology and new political opportunities have helped atheists to finally gain at least some measure of legitimacy in American politics. In Atheists in American Politics, one of the first works to take atheism seriously as a social movement, Meagher highlights key moments within the political history of atheism and freethought, and examines how the changing circumstances that surround the movement help explain political mobilization. In doing so, this book also highlights the ways that social movements in general gain momentum, and how a number of interlocking factors are often necessary to enable a movement to "take off" in American politics.
Author: Patrick McLaughlin
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Release Date: 2010-04-12
Experience gripping wartime stories and honest prayers by this Camp David chaplain now serving in Iraq. When words mean less and less, but money talks more and more; when blasphemy is a best seller, and eternal war has replaced hopeful diplomacy; in times like these is prayer even possible? Patrick J. McLaughlin thinks so. McLaughlin is an active duty Navy Chaplain who has ministered to heads of state and to soldiers living and dying in the heat of Iraq. No Atheists in Foxholes assembles Chaplain McLaughlin's experiences and prayers from e-mails, private notes, and personal conversations that take us real-time into realms of duty and spirit: from the quiet darkness of his infant son's New England bedroom on September 11, 2001, to the bomshelled medical tents and blistered Army Humvees of Anbar Province. Chaplain McLaughlin believes that prayer is not only possible, but critical. "We must all learn to pray for peace," he says, "and then become an answer to that prayer."
Author: Tim Crane
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Release Date: 2017-10-30
Current debate about religion seems to be going nowhere. Atheists persist with their arguments, many plausible and some unanswerable, but they make no impact on believers. Defenders of religion find atheists equally unwilling to cede ground. Noting that religion is not what atheists think it is, Tim Crane offers a way out of this stalemate.
Lectio Divina: Contemplative Awakening and Awareness offers a unique prayer resource that provides a thorough grounding in the different moments of the lectio experience: listening, reading, savoring, responding, and then contemplating God's Word. It will act as a guide for those who have a desire to pray more deeply into this ancient practice and invites readers into a spirituality that encompasses a way of being with God and the whole of life. Lectio Divina, grounded in Benedictine tradition, provides an accessible approach to praying with scripture as well as several concrete and creative ways of praying lectio with different "texts" such as poetry, icons, and movies. The book also explores ways of bringing lectio into scripture study and integrating lectio into busy lives. It concludes by offering the reader an exploration of the transformational value of lectio divina and a way of using lectio to pray with life experience.
Author: Thomas S. Kidd
Publisher: Basic Books
Release Date: 2010-10-05
Before the Revolutionary War, America was a nation divided by different faiths. But when the war for independence sparked in 1776, colonists united under the banner of religious freedom. Evangelical frontiersmen and Deist intellectuals set aside their differences to defend a belief they shared, the right to worship freely. Inspiring an unlikely but powerful alliance, it was the idea of religious liberty that brought the colonists together in the battle against British tyranny. In God of Liberty, historian Thomas S. Kidd argues that the improbable partnership of evangelicals and Deists saw America through the Revolutionary War, the ratification of the Constitution, and the election of Thomas Jefferson in 1800. A thought-provoking reminder of the crucial role religion played in the Revolutionary era, God of Liberty represents both a timely appeal for spiritual diversity and a groundbreaking excavation of how faith powered the American Revolution.
Author: John Gray
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Release Date: 2018-10-02
From the provocative author of Straw Dogs comes an incisive, surprising intervention in the political and scientific debate over religion and atheism When you explore older atheisms, you will find that some of your firmest convictions—secular or religious—are highly questionable. If this prospect disturbs you, what you are looking for may be freedom from thought. For a generation now, public debate has been corroded by a shrill, narrow derision of religion in the name of an often vaguely understood “science.” John Gray’s stimulating and enjoyable new book, Seven Types of Atheism, describes the complex, dynamic world of older atheisms, a tradition that is, he writes, in many ways intertwined with and as rich as religion itself. Along a spectrum that ranges from the convictions of “God-haters” like the Marquis de Sade to the mysticism of Arthur Schopenhauer, from Bertrand Russell’s search for truth in mathematics to secular political religions like Jacobinism and Nazism, Gray explores the various ways great minds have attempted to understand the questions of salvation, purpose, progress, and evil. The result is a book that sheds an extraordinary light on what it is to be human.
The exhilarating story of an atheist who accidentally experienced enlightenment because of dietary changes. Katie Player, PhD was a left-brained economist and a lifelong atheist. She had chronic fatigue, asthma, allergies, and sinus infections, among other maladies. Everything changed when her husband suddenly got sick. Doctor after doctor failed to diagnose him; Player became increasing frustrated and decided to figure out the cause herself. She discovered he was nutritionally bankrupt. Players background in economics, statistics and research gave her a unique perspective that enabled her to create an Equilibrium Dieta way of eating that yields health for a lifetime, and the couple began the journey to nutritional solvency. In the early morning hours that December, Players atheist world shattered forever in a terrifying and wonderful spiritual encounter. She was left wondering who, or what, she was, and she spent years integrating the spiritual knowledge she received that morning. This is the testimony of a diet so efficient, and so powerful that it can bring anyone, even an atheist, face-to-face with the Great Mystery of All That Is. In Part 2, Player explains the Equilibrium Diet and provides a blueprint for you to follow. The resultthe end of nutritional bankruptcy for all willing to try it. Nutritional bankruptcy [noun]1. condition of dis-ease that results when foods are consumed that cost the body more to digest than it provides in available nutrients. 2. nutritional depletion. 3. the state resulting from repeatedly negative returns on nutritional investments.