Download Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart: Rewriting the Ten Commandments by Lex Bayer, John Figdor PDF

By Lex Bayer, John Figdor

Atheist brain, Humanist Heart asks a necessary query for the forty five million american citizens who self-identify as nonreligious: “So, you don’t think in God; now what?” this query is more and more very important, as one-third of teenagers less than the age of thirty ponder themselves nonreligious. With a systematic eye and an empathetic center, the authors flip traditional perceptions approximately atheism on their head. They convey that atheism don't need to be reactionary (against faith and God), yet really that it could possibly provide a transparent set of positive ideas to dwell by means of, which determine atheism as a favorable worldview. Following a philosophical strategy grounded in good judgment and facts, Bayer and Figdor take readers on an inspiring trip to find easy methods to stay a cheap, moral, and chuffed lifestyles with no God. The readers are engaged at each step, inspired to self-reflect and finally discover their very own set of non-public ideals.

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Extra resources for Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart: Rewriting the Ten Commandments for the Twenty-first Century

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But in animals, we can see a major design innovation: the evolution of simple nervous systems—ancestors of the autonomic nervous system—capable of swifter and more efficient information transmission but still devoted, in the main, to internal affairs. An autonomic nervous system is not a mind at all but rather a control system, more along the lines of the nutritive soul of a plant, that preserves the basic integrity of the living system. We sharply distinguish these ancient systems from our minds, and yet, curiously, the closer we look at the details of their operation the more mindlike we find them to be!

If so, then of course they must think particular thoughts. A thought couldn't exist without being some particular thought or other, could it? But a particular thought must be composed of particular concepts. You can't think the thought that my dish is full of beef unless you have the concepts of dish and beef, and to have these concepts you have to have a host of other concepts (bucket, plate, cow, flesh, . . ), since this particular thought is readily distinguishable (by us) from the thought that the bucket is full of beef as well as from the thought that my plate is full of calves' liver to say nothing of the thought that the red, tasty stuff in the thing that I usually eat from is not the usual dry stuff they feed me and so on and so forth, forever.

Even as small children, we readily understand (and docilely accept) the hypothesis, however. It's hard to imagine that any other creatures could ever be brought to formulate, much less confirm, the hypothesis that these small bright spots are one and the same heavenly body. Couldn't those huge, hot disks that make a daily passage across the skies be new every day? We're the only species that can even formulate the question. Compare sun and moon to the seasons. Spring comes back each year, but we don't ask (any more) if it's the same spring, returned.

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