God Is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions That Run the World--and Why Their Differences Matter (Google eBook)

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Harper Collins, Apr 20, 2010 - Religion - 400 pages
3 Reviews

At the dawn of the twenty-first century, dizzying scientific and technological advancements, interconnected globalized economies, and even the so-called New Atheists have done nothing to change one thing: our world remains furiously religious. For good and for evil, religion is the single greatest influence in the world. We accept as self-evident that competing economic systems (capitalist or communist) or clashing political parties (Republican or Democratic) propose very different solutions to our planet's problems. So why do we pretend that the world's religious traditions are different paths to the same God? We blur the sharp distinctions between religions at our own peril, argues religion scholar Stephen Prothero, and it is time to replace naïve hopes of interreligious unity with deeper knowledge of religious differences.

In Religious Literacy, Prothero demonstrated how little Americans know about their own religious traditions and why the world's religions should be taught in public schools. Now, in God Is Not One, Prothero provides readers with this much-needed content about each of the eight great religions. To claim that all religions are the same is to misunderstand that each attempts to solve a different human problem. For example:

–Islam: the problem is pride / the solution is submission
–Christianity: the problem is sin / the solution is salvation
–Confucianism: the problem is chaos / the solution is social order
–Buddhism: the problem is suffering / the solution is awakening
–Judaism: the problem is exile / the solution is to return to God

Prothero reveals each of these traditions on its own terms to create an indispensable guide for anyone who wants to better understand the big questions human beings have asked for millennia—and the disparate paths we are taking to answer them today. A bold polemical response to a generation of misguided scholarship, God Is Not One creates a new context for understanding religion in the twenty-first century and disproves the assumptions most of us make about the way the world's religions work.

  

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if you want to become more ignorant after reading a book, try this one. This guy didn't even get it right that certain things are philosophy and certain things are religion. Especially when it comes to religious beliefs in Asia, you know the countries over the other side, who the people are pretty much all the same (?!). He doesn't have a through-all understanding of Taoism and Confucianism, and he doesn't know how they actually came from the same philosophy--I Chin. But of course, I Chin would be too deep for him.
Confucianism is NOT A RELIGION, IT IS A PHILOSOPHY. IT IS TAUGHT IN ASIA AS A PHILOSOPHY IN MIDDLE SCHOOLS, IT HAS NEVER BEEN A RELIGION AND HAS NOT BEEN USED OR VIEWED AS A RELIGION IN PEOPLES LIVES.
People putting Confucius in temples out of ignorance and superstition, no one will go to Confucius to ask about life and death questions or anything beyond things in this life. You know when people goes to Temple for Confucius? Right before the exam! The rest of time no one worship him for anything of super natural reason. Confucius is a teacher, philosopher, not a religious figure.
This is a poorly researched book. His methodology is questionable, and as Confucius would say, he might have read a few books and believe what he read, when in fact he should probably read no books at al.
 

Contents

Introduction
1
The Way of Submission
25
The Way of Salvation
65
The Way of Propriety
101
The Way of Devotion
131
The Way of Awakening
169
The Way of Connection
203
The Way of Exile and Return
243
The Way of Flourishing
279
The Way of Reason
317
Conclusion
331
Acknowledgments
341
Notes
343
Index
375
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

STEPHEN PROTHERO is the New York Times bestselling author of Religious Literacy and God Is Not One, a professor of religion at Boston University, and a senior fellow at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History in Washington D.C. His work has been featured on the cover of Time magazine, The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, National Public Radio, and other top national media outlets. He blogs for CNN's Belief Blog and writes for the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, USA Today, The Washington Post, and other publications. Visit the author online at www.stephenprothero.com.

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