What if religions are neither all true nor all nonsense?
The boring debate between fundamentalist believers and non-believers is finally moved on by Alain de Botton's inspiring new book, which boldly argues that the supernatural claims of religion are of course entirely false - and yet that religions still have some very important things to teach the secular world.
Religion for Atheists suggests that rather than mocking religions, agnostics and atheists should instead steal from them - because they're packed with good ideas on how we might live and arrange our societies. Blending deep respect with total impiety, de Botton (a non-believer himself) proposes that we should look to religions for insights into, among other concerns, how to:
build a sense of community
make our relationships last
overcome feelings of envy and inadequacy
escape the twenty-four hour media
get more out of art, architecture and music
and create new businesses designed to address our emotional needs.
For too long non-believers have faced a stark choice between either swallowing lots of peculiar doctrines or doing away with a range of consoling and beautiful rituals and ideas.
At last, in Religion for Atheists, Alain de Botton, the author of the bestselling The Consolations of Philosophy and How Proust Can Change Your Life, has fashioned a far more interesting and truly helpful alternative.
About The Author
Alain de Botton is the author of bestselling books including The Consolations of Philosophy, The Art of Travel, How Proust Can Change Your Life and Essays in Love. His work has been published in twenty-five countries. Born in 1969, he lives in London, where he helped set up the School of Life.
The battle being fought between atheists and believers has raged for centuries. In one camp stand those quoting holy writ and in the other stand those quoting Richard Dawkins.
With his new book, Religion for Atheists: A Non-believer's Guide to the Uses of Religion, Alain de Botton steps into the firing line, deciding bravely to walk a path up through the middle of 'no man's land'.
This is book which will certainly get people talking. And arguing. And I am sure the warring parties will leave off shooting at each other for a time to take aim at the lonely figure standing between them. But I do not fear for Alain de Botton. He is a very clear thinker. Easily a match for most hotheads.
Number Of Pages: 320
Published: 25th January 2012
Dimensions (cm): 22.2 x 14.6 x 2.8
Weight (kg): 0.6