15 May 2012
Religion for Atheists; Alain de Botton
Religion for Atheists: A Non-Believer's Guide to the Uses of Religion by Alain de Botton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Having a Kindle is dangerous: I saw the author on After Words and immediately bought the book.
The premise is that there are things that religion (mostly Christianity, but others are discussed) does really well, particularly instilling a sense of ethics, morality, caring and community, that secular institutions would do well to emulate. The difference in education, for example, as the university model has taken over, shows less emphasis on ethics or morals and more emphasis on literature as part of a school. Another example? Why are there no secular versions of the Stations of the Cross, like a Stations of Aging or Stations of Grief? Towards the end he mentions Comte's Religion of Humanity. It would have been interesting had this idea been given more credence.