Would you give up on faith altogether? Or is it possible to rediscover--with fresh eyes--a richer and more satisfying understanding of God and spirituality? So You Thought You Knew is a refreshing journey written straight from the heart. It's about thinking outside the 'institutional walls' of Christianity and asking the hard questions. It boldly says in public what many people are thinking in private. And its hilarious stories and life-changing insights will inspire those who are dissatisfied with fear-driven religion but believe--deep down--there's a better message out there for the world to hear.
The web site had 13 newly created, re-written, or updated essays so far during SEP, including the above book review. In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below: New and updated essays: Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.
It offers a challenging alternative, beyond theism and atheism, with a joyful approach to our lives and a caring concern for all life on this earth. Today, pantheism is seeing a revival as the underlying world view of many environmentalists, of leading scientists, of nature-revering pagans, and of non-theists looking for a more embracing perspective. The web site had 36 newly created, re-written, or updated essays so far during AUG, including the above book review. The Age of Reason and the Enlightenment led theorists to apply scientific reasoning to the non-scientific disciplines of politics, economics, and moral philosophy.
Instead of relying on the woodcuts of dissected bodies in old medical texts, physicians opened bodies themselves to see what was there; instead of divining truth through the authority of an ancient holy book or philosophical treatise, people began to explore the book of nature for themselves through travel and exploration; instead of the supernatural belief in the divine right of kings, people employed a natural belief in the right of democracy.
In this provocative and compelling book, Shermer will explain how abstract reasoning, rationality, empiricism, skepticism -- scientific ways of thinking -- have profoundly changed the way we perceive morality and, indeed, move us ever closer to a more just world.
The web site had 48 newly created, re-written, or updated essays so far during JUL, including the above book review. In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:. Cullen, a climatologist, notes that "just as our brain is hardwired to perceive threats that are most immediate to us, we are hardwired to devote more energy to caring about the weather than to caring about the climate," and that "by the time you see it in the weather Despite the worry among scientists that humans will follow "the woolly mammoth, the symbol of a climate that no longer exists," the book presents a surprisingly optimistic view of humanity's determination to come to terms with a daunting future.
Her predictions may well hold for later in our century if the current trajectory of carbon emission increases are maintained. The web site had 29 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during JUN, including the above book review. Their insights shook our perception of who we are and where we stand in the world, and in their wake have left an uneasy coexistence: Which is the keeper of truth? Which is the true path to understanding reality?
After forty years of study with some of the greatest scientific minds, as well as a lifetime of meditative, spiritual, and philosophic study, the Dalai Lama presents a brilliant analysis of why all avenues of inquiry -- scientific as well as spiritual -- must be pursued in order to arrive at a complete picture of the truth. Through an examination of Darwinism and karma, quantum mechanics and philosophical insight into the nature of reality, neurobiology and the study of consciousness, the Dalai Lama draws significant parallels between contemplative and scientific examinations of reality.
The legacy of this book is a vision of the world in which our different approaches to understanding ourselves, our universe, and one another can be brought together in the service of humanity. The web site had 38 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during MAY, including the above book review.
This honest, hopeful account shows life through one man's eyes and assures all people: Author Gregory Coles' comment:. Until recently, there was only one view of homosexuality within evangelicalism: Pope Francis' alleged beliefs about the afterlife. The Family; Charles Manson Part 2.
Part 2 to Part 7. Search for intelligent life in the universe: Elements needed for life may be missing elsewhere in the universe An essay donated by David W. Two essays donated by Susan Humphreys: Definitions of the terms: A new section on Racism: Americans' declining beliefs about God: The struggle towards universal health care in the United States.
Links to Easter and other religious celebrations. Thompson about the Golden Rule. School Shootings, mostly in North America: Changes after shooting in Parkland, FL.
Beliefs about God, by Stephen Hawking, an Atheist. Mississippi creates law to ban abortions after 15 weeks. Timeline of school shootings, mostly in North America: Thompson about selfish and cooperative behavior. Creating a safe place for kids on the Internet. Links to anti-bullying sites. Shooter's wife cleared in court. Recent evidence and impact of climate change. A glossary of sexual terms starting with letters M to P and letters Q to Z.
From a historical perspective, the Bible is shockingly, provably wrong -- a point supported by today's best archaeological and historical scholarship but not well understood by or communicated to the public. Yet this emphatically does not mean that the Bible isn't, in some very real measure, true, argues scholar of mysticism Richard Smoley.
Smoley reviews the most authoritative historical evidence to demonstrate that figures such as Moses, Abraham, and Jesus are not only unlikely to have existed, but bear strong composite resemblances to other Near Eastern religious icons.
Likewise, the geopolitical and military events of Scripture fail to mesh with the largely settled historical time line and social structures.
Smoley meticulously shows how our concepts of the Hebrew and Christian God, including Christ himself, are an assemblage of ideas that were altered, argued over, and edited -- until their canonization. This process, to a large degree, gave Western civilization its consensus view of God. But these conclusions are not cause for nihilism or disbelief. Rather, beneath the metaphorical figures and mythical historicism of Scripture appears an extraordinary, truly transcendent theology born from the most sacred and fully realized spiritual and human insights of the antique Eastern world.
Far from being "untrue," the Bible is remarkably, extraordinarily true as it connects us to the sublime insights of our ancient ancestors and points to a unifying ethic behind many of the world's faiths.
Average rating by eight Amazon customers' reviews: The web site had 8 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during JAN, including the above book review. In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below. Imbolc , a Wiccan and Neopagan seasonal day of celebration a.
Groundhog Day, Snowdrop Festival , etc. Assessing the will of God through prayer; is it reliable? Mike Pence criticized for communicating with Jesus.
The Presbyterian Church USA redefined marriage and gave their clergy the choice of solemnizing the marriages of same-sex couples. Is the Bible the Word of God or Myth of men? Average rating by 63 Amazon customers' reviews: The web site had 6 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during JAN, including the above book review.
Legalized during ; cancelled by the Governor's veto in early Apologies by Christian groups for past racist acts. Some have returned from the brink of despair, others have found renewed purpose and discovered the saving power of community. Together these vignettes paint a portrait of the real, felt impact of Unitarian Universalism. Readers can find a new appreciation for the ways Unitarian Universalism makes a tangible difference in the lives of real people who are struggling.
Bruce Robinson, the founder and main author of this web site, wrote one of the 43 personal stories in this book. It is called "A Perfect Match. Many of the other 42 stories in the book are quite moving.
The web site had 19 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during DEC, including the above book review. Become a Friend of Aeon to save articles and enjoy other exclusive benefits.
Aeon email newsletters are issued by the not-for-profit, registered charity Aeon Media Group Ltd Australian Business Number 80 This Email Newsletter Privacy Statement pertains to the personally identifying information you voluntarily submit in the form of your email address to receive our email newsletters.
We have taken reasonable measures to protect information about you from loss, theft, misuse or unauthorised access, disclosure, alteration and destruction. No physical or electronic security system is impenetrable however and you should take your own precautions to protect the security of any personally identifiable information you transmit.
We cannot guarantee that the personal information you supply will not be intercepted while transmitted to us or our marketing automation service Mailchimp.
We will not disclose your personal information except: We will retain your information for as long as needed in light of the purposes for which is was obtained or to comply with our legal obligations and enforce our agreements.
You may request a copy of the personal information we hold about you by submitting a written request to support aeon. We will try and respond to your request as soon as reasonably practical. When you receive the information, if you think any of it is wrong or out of date, you can ask us to change or delete it for you.
He is the author of Jewish Rites, National Rites: Religious Liberty and Modern States. Brought to you by curio. Edited by Sam Haselby. The purpose of religious tolerance has always been, and remains, to maintain the power and purity of the dominant religion in a given state. Most dominant religions in most states today profess tolerance, but they also seem to feel especially threatened. Religious nationalist movements in the United States, Europe, India, Turkey and Israel all want to strengthen the relationship between state identity and the dominant religion.
We can see a similar dynamic in the Turkish celebration of the Ottoman conquest of Constantinople in When religious nationalists claim the mantle of tolerance based on the legal protections that exist for religious minorities in their states, they are not wrong.
Tolerance has indeed historically been a framework for people fundamentally different from one another to live peacefully together. Which is precisely why it is time to dispense once and for all with tolerance as a model for relations between groups. It faced a sustained critique after the Second World War from philosophers and political theorists such as Karl Popper, Herbert Marcuse and many others who saw liberal tolerance as guilty of passively acquiescing to the rise of fascism in the first half of the 20th century.
Following Marcuse, in the s the New Left asked if the idea of tolerance — especially of speech and political diversity — served only to shield governments, corporations and the elite in continuing policies of economic and racial oppression.
More recently, a school of international-relations scholarship has emerged emphasising how the foreign policy guiding Western governments now divides the world between the tolerant and the intolerant in much the same way that it has always distinguished between the civilised whites and the barbaric everyone else. Even so, the question of how tolerance — religious tolerance in particular — could be a tool of domination strikes many people as counterintuitive or perverse.
Tolerance is deeply rooted in the canon of apparent modern ideals: Groups do not interact in isolation, they share reciprocally, sometimes intentionally and sometimes inadvertently. If it is true that a global society exists, what its best parts embody today is not tolerance, but reciprocity, the vital and dynamic relationship of mutual exchange that occurs every day between individuals and groups within a society.
For teachers, journalists and politicians to begin to speak in terms of reciprocity instead of tolerance will not do away with intolerance or prejudice.
But words are important and, as much as they reflect our thoughts, they also shape how we think. Idealising tolerance embeds dominance. T he idea of tolerance owes its origins in part to the Augustinian tradition of the early Christian Church, which was greatly concerned with defining the boundaries of the Christian community.
How could Christians live peacefully with people they believed to have crucified their god? Jews would remain on the outside of the holy Christian community — tolerated, as a remnant of the pre-Christian past. But Christian tolerance of Jews also created a theological problem: Some towns in the 14th century wrote charters for the Jews, outlining explicitly their freedom to organise their autonomous religious and communal life for the benefit of mutual Jewish and Christian prosperity.
Yet this prosperity also brought increased competition between Jews and Christian burghers, to whom, by the 16th century, the Crown granted in some towns the Privilegium de non tolerandis Judaeis the right not to tolerate Jews. The town of Lublin received such a privilege in , but then the Jews, who formed a Jewish town at the foot of the castle walls on the outside received a parallel privilege, de non tolerandis Christianis in These arrangements successfully created a stable society with co-dependent and reciprocal relationships between groups, even while the goal of tolerance for all parties remained the greatest possible isolation, or perhaps insulation, from one another.
Islam, Buddhism, Confucianism, Sikhism and many other civilisations have historically maintained their own traditions of religious tolerance. The Reformation made stamping out heresy a marker of religious devotion.
Before the compromises required for different Christians to live among one another were made, violent religious wars plagued Europe for plus years in the wake of the Protestant and Catholic reformations from the midth to the midth century.
Legal tolerance might have been the winning solution to resolve that century-long descent into fratricide but, for a long time after the reformations, intolerance was seen as a worthwhile theological attribute.
A certain notion of tolerance, and the necessity of freedom of conscience in places where the balance of military power was not held overwhelmingly by one group or another, did indeed grow from the reformations and the wars of religion. But it took many years, with dramatic downs and ups, for the idea of tolerance to become a positive good valued in European society.
Tolerance was not a virtue brought to America: It was in the 17th century, at the very earliest, that the idea of tolerance began to take root in Europe as a principle consistent with good and effective government, and only with the European Enlightenment in the 17th and 18th centuries that philosophers, theologians, political theorists and men of letters argued that tolerating difference was necessary for a functioning and prosperous society.
It was in the American colonies where European powers — first the Dutch and then the British, seeking peace among their colonists — instituted protection of individual religious conscience. Contrary to American national mythology, tolerance was not a distinct virtue carried to America by those who built their imagined city upon a hill: The ideal of religious tolerance was sewn further in the colonies by transplanted Londoners such as William Penn and Roger Williams, but always to protect Christianity from politics, and not the other way around.
The US, from its birth, marked groups for tolerance and intolerance. The country attempted to conquer, control and Christianise the native people and, until the Indian Citizenship Act of , the very minimum tolerance — the simple ability to live — was denied to them in most places, and in others was the most they received. Africans fell into an entirely different category; slavery reflects neither tolerance nor intolerance, but rather inhumanity.
Even so, the idea that the foundation of the American polity is a multiplicity of ideals — religious and political — was a tension among the founders of the early republic who themselves debated which Enlightenment principles should stand at the forefront of their ideological experiment. T he Enlightenment, the rise of nation states, two world wars and post-war European decolonisation transformed tolerance from a legal concept that regulated the privileges and disabilities of minority religions to a philosophical and ethical ideal.
With the ascension of international human rights law following the Second World War, states stopped articulating the protection of minorities in edicts of tolerance or guarantees of minority rights. They instead created legal protections for speech and conscience and laws protecting against discrimination.
What is religious tolerance? [ edit ] At its simplest level, religious tolerance is about allowing others to hold beliefs that run contrary to one's own beliefs.
Tolerance within Christianity is going to be our main focus. However, it should be noted that Europe's pre-Christian past should be looked at. For example, the religious situation of the Roman Empire in particular, seems to resemble our own experiences with pluralistic societies in today's Europe.
- Tolerance, Liberalism, and Community ABSTRACT: The liberal principle of tolerance limits the use of coercion by a commitment to the broadest possible toleration of rival religious and moral conceptions . Essays that we feel exhibit hatred or proposes discrimination against others on the basis of their gender, race, skin color, nationality, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, denomination, etc. Essays whose primary goal is to attack individuals or groups. Essays which attack religious beliefs of other faith groups.
Dec 06, · "Religion and Statecraft: Tolerance and Theocracy: How Liberal States Should Think of Religious States." Journal of International Affairs, Fall/Winter Stetson, Brad and Joseph G. Conti, The Truth about Tolerance: Pluralism, Diversity, and the Culture Wars. Religious Tolerance Essay Religious tolerance in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was very rare. However, there were many people and movements that led to an increase in tolerance and protection for all different religions.