The first book to deal with all the arguments against religion and, equally important, to put forward an alternative - humanism
A.C. Grayling is Professor of Philosophy and Master of the New College of the Humanities, London. He believes that philosophy should take an active, useful role in society. He has been a regular contributor to The Times, Financial Times, Observer, Independent on Sunday, Economist, Literary Review, New Statesman and Prospect, and is a frequent and popular contributor to radio and television programmes, including Newsnight, Today, In Our Time, Start the Week and CNN News. Grayling's other works directly and indirectly related to this one include The Good Book and Towards the Light: The Story of the Struggle for Liberty and Rights that Made the Modern West.
Grayling writes with clarity, elegance and the occasional
aphoristic twist ... straight alpha material *
Independent on Towards The Light *
There is an immense depth of human wisdom on display here, and five minutes with any passage will have you contemplating all day * Independent on The Good Book *
Undeniably thought-provoking * The Sunday Times *
Professor Grayling himself neatly exemplifies the values of calm rationality which are at the heart of Stoicism, and which influenced early Christian thought * Church Times *
The newest offering by prolific English philosopher Grayling (Master, New Coll. of the Humanities, London; The Good Book: A Humanist Bible) is essentially two books in one. The first part is a now fairly standard atheistic critique of religion, in the vein of Richard Dawkins, in which Grayling viciously attacks religion at its root, sparing not even moderate believers. Along the way, he assesses the teleological, ontological, and cosmological arguments for the existence of God, as well as Pascal's Wager. The second part is a positive argument in support of humanism as an approach to ethics, which calls to mind the life and writings of philosopher Paul Kurtz. Drawing largely from classical Greek philosophy, Grayling lays out one potential path (among others) to a life of meaning, value, and virtue without God. A highlight is the section about death and dying from a humanistic perspective. VERDICT Grayling's evisceration of even the moderately religious will unnecessarily alienate many potential readers and partners in his humanistic vision. Recommended for fans of Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens, and Sam Harris.-Brian Sullivan, Alfred Univ. Lib., NY (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.