Grace Without God

Author: Katherine Ozment
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062305158
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Meet “the Nones”—In this thought-provoking exploration of secular America, celebrated journalist Katherine Ozment takes readers on a quest to understand the trends and ramifications of a nation in flight from organized religion. Studies show that religion makes us happier, healthier and more giving, connecting us to our past and creating tight communal bonds. Most Americans are raised in a religious tradition, but in recent decades many have begun to leave religion, and with it their ancient rituals, mythic narratives, and sense of belonging. So how do the nonreligious fill the need for ritual, story, community, and, above all, purpose and meaning without the one-stop shop of religion? What do they do with the space left after religion? With Nones swelling to one-fourth of American adults, and more than one-third of those under thirty, these questions have never been more urgent. Writer, journalist, and secular mother of three Katherine Ozment came face-to-face with the fundamental issue of the Nones when her son asked her the simplest of questions: “what are we?” Unsettled by her reply—“Nothing”—she set out on a journey to find a better answer. She traversed the frontier of American secular life, sought guidance in science and the humanities, talked with noted scholars, and wrestled with her own family’s attempts to find meaning and connection after religion. Insightful, surprising, and compelling, Grace Without God is both a personal and critical exploration of the many ways nonreligious Americans create their own meaning and purpose in an increasingly secular age.

Becoming Atheist

Author: Callum G. Brown
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
ISBN: 1474224555
Format: PDF
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The Western World is becoming atheist. In the space of three generations churchgoing and religious belief have become alien to millions. We are in the midst of one of humankind's great cultural changes. How has this happened? Becoming Atheist explores how people of the sixties' generation have come to live their lives as if there is no God. It tells the life narratives of those from Britain, Western Europe, the United States and Canada who came from Christian, Jewish and other backgrounds to be without faith. Based on interviews with 85 people born in 18 countries, Callum Brown shows how gender, ethnicity and childhood shape how individuals lose religion. This book moves from statistical and broad cultural analysis to use frank, humorous and sometimes harrowing personal testimony. Becoming Atheist exposes people's role in renegotiating their own identities, and fashioning a secular and humanist culture for the Western world.

Divinity of Doubt

Author: Vincent Bugliosi
Publisher: Vanguard
ISBN: 1593156669
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Vincent Bugliosi, whom many view as the nation's foremost prosecutor, has successfully taken on, in court or on the pages of his books, the most notorious murderers of the last half century--Charles Manson, O.J. Simpson, and Lee Harvey Oswald. Now, in the most controversial book of his celebrated career, he turns his incomparable prosecutorial eye on the greatest target of all: God. In making his case for agnosticism, Bugliosi has very arguably written the most powerful indictment ever of God, organized religion, theism, and atheism. Theists will be left reeling by the commanding nature of Bugliosi's extraordinary arguments against them. And, with his trademark incisive logic and devastating wit, he exposes the intellectual poverty of atheism and skewers its leading popularizers--Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, and Richard Dawkins. Joining a 2,000-year-old conversation which no one has contributed anything significant to for years, Bugliosi, in addition to destroying the all-important Christian argument of intelligent design, remarkably--yes, scarily--shakes the very foundations of Christianity by establishing that Jesus was not born of a virgin, and hence was not the son of God, that scripture in reality supports the notion of no free will, and that the immortality of the soul was a pure invention of Plato that Judaism and Christianity were forced to embrace because without it there is no life after death. Destined to be an all-time classic, Bugliosi's Divinity of Doubt sets a new course amid the explosion of bestselling books on atheism and theism--the middle path of agnosticism. In recognizing the limits of what we know, Bugliosi demonstrates that agnosticism is he most intelligent and responsible position to take on the eternal question of God's existence.

With Or Without God

Author: Gretta Vosper
Publisher: HarperCollins Canada
ISBN: 1554689309
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Envisioning a future in which the Christian church plays a viable and transformative role in shaping society, Gretta Vosper argues that if the church is to survive at all, the heart of faith must undergo a radical change. Vosper, founder of the Canadian Centre for Progressive Christianity and a minister in Toronto, believes that what will save the church is an emphasis on just and compassionate living -- a new and wholly humanistic approach to religion. Without this reform, the church as we know it faces extinction. Vosper addresses the issues of spiritual fulfillment, comfort and connection in the modern world through a thoughtful and passionate discourse. She urges a renewal of old doctrines but does so with dignity and respect. Offering difficult but penetrating insights into a new generation of spiritually aware -- and spiritually open -- people, With or Without God offers a startling model for a renewed church as a leader in ethics, fostering relationships, meaning and values that are solidly rooted in our own selves.

How Not to Be Secular

Author: James K. A. Smith
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
ISBN: 0802867618
Format: PDF, Docs
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How (Not) to Be Secular is what Jamie Smith calls "your hitchhiker's guide to the present" -- it is both a reading guide to Charles Taylor's monumental work A Secular Age and philosophical guidance on how we might learn to live in our times. Taylor's landmark book A Secular Age (2007) provides a monumental, incisive analysis of what it means to live in the post-Christian present -- a pluralist world of competing beliefs and growing unbelief. Jamie Smith's book is a compact field guide to Taylor's insightful study of the secular, making that very significant but daunting work accessible to a wide array of readers. Even more, though, Smith's How (Not) to Be Secular is a practical philosophical guidebook, a kind of how-to manual on how to live in our secular age. It ultimately offers us an adventure in self-understanding and maps out a way to get our bearings in today's secular culture, no matter who "we" are -- whether believers or skeptics, devout or doubting, self-assured or puzzled and confused. This is a book for any thinking person to chew on.

The Little Book of Atheist Spirituality

Author: André Comte-Sponville
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9780670018475
Format: PDF
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Poses an argument for living a spiritual life that is not dependent on religion, explaining that an acceptance of philosophical spiritual traditions and values does not require practitioners to embrace the existence of a higher order.

Faith No More

Author: Phil Zuckerman
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019024884X
Format: PDF
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During his 2009 inaugural speech, President Obama described the United States as a nation of "Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus--and nonbelievers." It was the first time an American president had acknowledged the existence of this rapidly growing segment of the population in such a public forum. And yet the reasons why more and more people are turning away from religion are still poorly understood. In Faith No More, Phil Zuckerman draws on in-depth interviews with people who have left religion to find out what's really behind the process of losing one's faith. According to a 2008 study, so many Americans claim no religion (15%, up from 8% in 1990) that this category now outranks every other religious group except Catholics and Baptists. Exploring the deeper stories within such survey data, Zuckerman shows that leaving one's faith is a highly personal, complex, and drawn-out process. And he finds that, rather than the cliché of the angry, nihilistic atheist, apostates are life-affirming, courageous, highly intelligent and inquisitive, and deeply moral. Zuckerman predicts that this trend toward nonbelief will likely continue and argues that the sooner we recognize that religion is frequently and freely rejected by all sorts of men and women, the sooner our understanding of the human condition will improve. The first book of its kind, Faith No More will appeal to anyone interested in the "New Atheism" and indeed to anyone wishing to more fully understand our changing relationship to religious faith.

All Joy and No Fun

Author: Jennifer Senior
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 0062072269
Format: PDF, ePub
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Thousands of books have examined the effects of parents on their children. In All Joy and No Fun, award-winning journalist Jennifer Senior now asks: what are the effects of children on their parents? In All Joy and No Fun, award-winning journalist Jennifer Senior tries to tackle this question, isolating and analyzing the many ways in which children reshape their parents' lives, whether it's their marriages, their jobs, their habits, their hobbies, their friendships, or their internal senses of self. She argues that changes in the last half century have radically altered the roles of today's mothers and fathers, making their mandates at once more complex and far less clear. Recruiting from a wide variety of sources—in history, sociology, economics, psychology, philosophy, and anthropology—she dissects both the timeless strains of parenting and the ones that are brand new, and then brings her research to life in the homes of ordinary parents around the country. The result is an unforgettable series of family portraits, starting with parents of young children and progressing to parents of teens. Through lively and accessible storytelling, Senior follows these mothers and fathers as they wrestle with some of parenthood's deepest vexations—and luxuriate in some of its finest rewards. Meticulously researched yet imbued with emotional intelligence, All Joy and No Fun makes us reconsider some of our culture's most basic beliefs about parenthood, all while illuminating the profound ways children deepen and add purpose to our lives. By focusing on parenthood, rather than parenting, the book is original and essential reading for mothers and fathers of today—and tomorrow.

Relax It s Just God

Author: Wendy Thomas Russell
Publisher: SCB Distributors
ISBN: 1941932010
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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The Joy of the Gospel

Author: Pope Francis
Publisher: Image
ISBN: 0553419544
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The perfect gift! A specially priced, beautifully designed hardcover edition of The Joy of the Gospel with a foreword by Robert Barron and an afterword by James Martin, SJ. “The joy of the gospel fills the hearts and lives of all who encounter Jesus… In this Exhortation I wish to encourage the Christian faithful to embark upon a new chapter of evangelization marked by this joy, while pointing out new paths for the Church’s journey in years to come.” – Pope Francis This special edition of Pope Francis's popular message of hope explores themes that are important for believers in the 21st century. Examining the many obstacles to faith and what can be done to overcome those hurdles, he emphasizes the importance of service to God and all his creation. Advocating for “the homeless, the addicted, refugees, indigenous peoples, the elderly who are increasingly isolated and abandoned,” the Holy Father shows us how to respond to poverty and current economic challenges that affect us locally and globally. Ultimately, Pope Francis demonstrates how to develop a more personal relationship with Jesus Christ, “to recognize the traces of God’s Spirit in events great and small.” Profound in its insight, yet warm and accessible in its tone, The Joy of the Gospel is a call to action to live a life motivated by divine love and, in turn, to experience heaven on earth. Includes a foreword by Robert Barron, author of Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of the Faith and James Martin, SJ, author of Jesus: A Pilgrimage From the Hardcover edition.