Religion Within Reason

Paperback | March 14, 2017

bySteven M. Cahn

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In the views of most believers and critics, religion is essentially connected to the existence of a supernatural deity. If supernaturalism is not reasonable, the argument goes, religion cannot be reasonable-or if supernaturalism is reasonable, religion must be as well. Are faith and reason, religion and science, doomed to a constant struggle for the heart of humanity? Steven M. Cahn believes that they are not, that even if God exists, religion may not be justified and that even if religion is justified, belief in God may not be.

In Religion Within Reason, Cahn argues that the common understanding of the relationship between religion and supernaturalism is flawed and that while supernaturalism is not reasonable, religious commitment may well be. Writing not as a theist but as one who finds much to admire in a religious life, he examines faith and reason, miracles, heaven and hell, religious diversity, and the problem of evil, using a variety of examples taken from religious thought, literature, and popular culture. Lucidly written in a nonpolemical spirit, Religion Within Reason offers an exciting new approach to the reconciliation of science and religion.

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In the views of most believers and critics, religion is essentially connected to the existence of a supernatural deity. If supernaturalism is not reasonable, the argument goes, religion cannot be reasonable-or if supernaturalism is reasonable, religion must be as well. Are faith and reason, religion and science, doomed to a constant s...

Steven M. Cahn is professor of philosophy at the City University of New York Graduate Center. He is the author or editor of more than fifty books, including Happiness and Goodness: Philosophical Reflection on Living Well (2015); Polishing Your Prose: How to Turn First Drafts Into Finished Work (2013); and From Student to Scholar: A Ca...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:128 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.68 inPublished:March 14, 2017Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231181612

ISBN - 13:9780231181617

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Steven Cahn aims to provide "an accessible and... provocative overview of the sort of challenges philosophy presents to any version of supernatural belief, while also exploring the possibility of religion within a naturalistic framework." The accessible overview is certainly here, as Cahn's discussion engagingly takes us one topic to the next. Present too is the provocation, as he examines each point from a commitment to the methods of scientific inquiry. We also receive something else as the book's extended argument develops: a thoughtful conception of how to live. Cahn engages us rationally, instructs us from a particular perspective and, in the process, inspires.