Sam Harris’s first book, The End of Faith, ignited a worldwide debate about the validity of religion. In the aftermath, Harris discovered that most people—from religious fundamentalists to nonbelieving scientists—agree on one point: science has nothing to say on the subject of human values. Indeed, our failure to address questions of meaning and morality through science has now become the most common justification for religious faith. It is also the primary reason why so many secularists and religious moderates feel obligated to "respect" the hardened superstitions of their more devout neighbors.
In this explosive new book, Sam Harris tears down the wall between scientific facts and human values, arguing that most people are simply mistaken about the relationship between morality and the rest of human knowledge. Harris urges us to think about morality in terms of human and animal well-being, viewing the experiences of conscious creatures as peaks and valleys on a "moral landscape". Because there are definite facts to be known about where we fall on this landscape, Harris foresees a time when science will no longer limit itself to merely describing what people do in the name of "morality"; in principle, science should be able to tell us what we ought to do to live the best lives possible.
Bringing a fresh perspective to age-old questions of right and wrong and good and evil, Harris demonstrates that we already know enough about the human brain and its relationship to events in the world to say that there are right and wrong answers to the most pressing questions of human life. Because such answers exist, moral relativism is simply false—and comes at increasing cost to humanity. And the intrusions of religion into the sphere of human values can be finally repelled: for just as there is no such thing as Christian physics or Muslim algebra, there can be no Christian or Muslim morality.
©2010 Sam Harris (P)2010 Simon & Schuster, Inc.
“Sam Harris breathes intellectual fire into an ancient debate. Reading this thrilling, audacious book, you feel the ground shifting beneath your feet. Reason has never had a more passionate advocate.” (Ian McEwan)
“A lively, provocative, and timely new look at one of the deepest problems in the world of ideas. Harris makes a powerful case for a morality that is based on human flourishing and thoroughly enmeshed with science and rationality. It is a tremendously appealing vision, and one that no thinking person can afford to ignore.” (Steven Pinker, Harvard College Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and author of How the Mind Works and The Blank Slate)
A more interesting reader.
I don't know. I couldn't get through the audio.
No emotion or interest in the reading that it bored me to tears. I couldn't stay focused on it. I tried 3 times to listen to it and just couldn't get through it.
I'm sure the material in it is something I would have been interested in but the reading of it was anything but interesting.
Books on tape are awesome! Audible sometimes sucks because it won't let you purchase Audiobooks after you already ordered them!
Sam once again takes us through the logical progressions of a difficult topic. He cuts through the fallacies and fairytales that often hijack our thought process. I would recommend this book to anyone.
As usual, Sam Harris does not pull any punches and analyzes thoroughly the current state of thinking and science (mainly experimental psychology and neuroscience) as they relate to morality, well-being and the concepts of right and wrong.
& science. I've never read any book before that breaks down the basics of what humans have been questioning for centuries
Will have to listen a third time to be sure I grasped all of the intended meaning. What I did understand seemed absolute factual and truthful. I'm a high IQ grandma that just wants a safe world for my grandchildren, no different than any other grandmother of any race creed or country. The highest goal for any one should be the truth.
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