Who Knows?: A Study of Religious Consciousness

Paperback | February 21, 2003

byRaymond M. Smullyan

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Is there really a God, and if so, what is God actually like? Is there an afterlife, and if so, is there such a thing as eternal punishment for unrepentant sinners, as many orthodox Christians and Muslims believe? And is it really true that our unconscious minds are connected to a higher spiritual reality, and if so, could this higher spiritual reality be the very same thing that religionists call "God"? In his latest book, Raymond M. Smullyan invites the reader to explore some beautiful and some horrible ideas related to religious and mystical thought. In Part One, Smullyan uses the writings on religion by fellow polymath Martin Gardner as the starting point for some inspired ideas about religion and belief. Part Two focuses on the doctrine of Hell and its justification, with Smullyan presenting powerful arguments on both sides of the controversy. "If God asked you to vote on the retention or abolition of Hell," he asks, "how would you vote?" Smullyan has posed this question to many believers and received some surprising answers. In the last part of his treasurable triptych, Smullyan takes up the "beautiful and inspiring" ideas of Richard Bucke and Edward Carpenter on Cosmic Consciousness. Readers will delight in Smullyan's observations on religion and in his clear-eyed
presentation of many new and startling ideas about this most wonderful product of human consciousness.

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From the Publisher

Is there really a God, and if so, what is God actually like? Is there an afterlife, and if so, is there such a thing as eternal punishment for unrepentant sinners, as many orthodox Christians and Muslims believe? And is it really true that our unconscious minds are connected to a higher spiritual reality, and if so, could this higher s...

Raymond Smullyan, a retired distinguished professor of philosophy, has authored over twenty books. He has had a remarkably diverse sequence of careers-as a pianist, magician, mathematical logician, philosopher, and essayist. His widely known writings are on such varied topics as mathematical logic, retrograde chess analysis, stereo pho...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:160 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.58 inPublished:February 21, 2003Publisher:Indiana University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0253215749

ISBN - 13:9780253215741

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Customer Reviews of Who Knows?: A Study of Religious Consciousness

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Rated 4 out of 5 by from A much needed alternative Religion is a hot topic these days, but for all the wrong reasons. On one side we have religious extremists who try to force their ideology on secular institutions. On the other side are anti-theists who smugly dismiss even the most benevolent of religious thought. What a perfect time for Smullyan, a whimsical logician who takes very little (especially himself) seriously, but thinks deeply about everything. Whatever your stance on religion, this book will give you something to mull over.
Date published: 2007-07-07

Extra Content

Table of Contents

Preliminary Table of Contents:

Preface
I Wherefore the Why's
II Through Dark Clouds
III Cosmic Consciousness
Index