Traces the decline of Christianity in America since the 1950s, posing controversial arguments about the role of heresy in the nation's downfall while calling for a revival of traditional Christian practices.
Many of our questions about religion, says renowned anthropologist Pascal Boyer, are no longer mysteries. We are beginning to know how to answer questions such as "Why do people have religion?" Using findings from anthropology, cognitive science, linguistics, and evolutionary biology, Religion Explained shows how this aspect of human consciousness is increasingly admissible to coherent, naturalistic explanation. This brilliant and controversial book gives readers the first scientific explanation for what religious feeling is really about, what it consists of, and where it comes from.
From the author of The Architecture of Happiness, a deeply moving meditation on how we can still benefit, without believing, from the wisdom, the beauty, and the consolatory power that religion has to offer. Alain de Botton was brought up in a committedly atheistic household, and though he was powerfully swayed by his parents' views, he underwent, in his mid-twenties, a crisis of faithlessness. His feelings of doubt about atheism had their origins in listening to Bach's cantatas, were further developed in the presence of certain Bellini Madonnas, and became overwhelming with an introduction to Zen architecture. However, it was not until his father's death -- buried under a Hebrew headstone i...
Twenty-five years after its original publication, Slave Religion remains a classic in the study of African American history and religion. In a new chapter in this anniversary edition, author Albert J. Raboteau reflects upon the origins of the book, the reactions to it over the past twenty-five years, and how he would write it differently today. Using a variety of first and second-hand sources-- some objective, some personal, all riveting-- Raboteau analyzes the transformation of the African religions into evangelical Christianity. He presents the narratives of the slaves themselves, as well as missionary reports, travel accounts, folklore, black autobiographies, and the journals of white observers to describe the day-to-day religious life in the slave communities. Slave Religion is a must-read for anyone wanting a full picture of this "invisible institution."
Diana Butler Bass, one of contemporary Christianity’s leading trend-spotters, exposes how the failings of the church today are giving rise to a new “spiritual but not religious” movement. Using evidence from the latest national polls and from her own cutting-edge research, Bass, the visionary author of A People’s History of Christianity, continues the conversation began in books like Brian D. McLaren’s A New Kind of Christianity and Harvey Cox’s The Future of Faith, examining the connections—and the divisions—between theology, practice, and community that Christians experience today. Bass’s clearly worded, powerful, and probing Christianity After Religion is required reading for anyone invested in the future of Christianity.
The Religions Book clearly and simply explains all of the important information about the world's major, and many minor, religions, in an easy-to-access format. Using easy-to-follow graphics and artworks, succinct quotations, and thoroughly accessible text, The Religions Book explores the beliefs that underpin religious traditions around the globe and how they developed. From primal beliefs to the world's great faiths and the continuing quest for spiritual meaning in our complex world, The Religions Book gets to the heart of what it means to believe in God and religion's place in society. The Religions Book includes: - A dedicated section for each of the world's five major faiths - Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, and Hinduism - Primal beliefs, ancient and classical mythology, and new religions - Brief biographies and context boxes to give the full historical context of selected religions The clear and concise summaries, graphics, and quotations in The Religions Book will help even the complete novice understand the ideas behind faiths and the place of religion in the world.
Scholars have long separated a few privileged “religions of the Book” from faiths lacking sacred texts, including ancient Roman religion. Looking beyond this distinction, Duncan MacRae delves into Roman treatises on the nature of gods and rituals to grapple with a central question: what was the significance of books in a religion without scripture?
The Complete Heretics' Guide to Western Religion Book One: The Mormons The next time that squeaky clean pair of LDS elders comes knocking on your door, they're in for a surprise! Find out the secrets the Mormon Church would rather you didn't know (and for which they paid plenty of money to keep hushed up - unsuccessfully!) In this first book of The Complete Heretic's Guide to World Religion series, historian and award-winning atheist author Dave Fitzgerald takes us behind the Salt Lake Curtain for a glimpse at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and answers your questions: Where did this multi-billion dollar tax-exempt corporation come from? Did Joseph Smith really sleep with all...