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Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon par [Dennett, Daniel C.]
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Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon Format Kindle

4.5 étoiles sur 5 2 commentaires client

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Longueur : 428 pages Word Wise: Activé Composition améliorée: Activé
Page Flip: Activé Langue : Anglais

Description du produit

Revue de presse

"Ambitious . . . an accessible account of what might be called the natural history of religion."
--The New Yorker

"How would a visitor from Mars dispassionately explain human religion? . . . My guess is that the result would be something like this crystal-clear, constantly engaging, and enjoyable new book."
--Jared Diamond, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Guns, Germs, and Steel and Collapse

"Rich and rewarding . . . the main business of the book is to give a scientific account of how religion may have developed among creatures such as us. . . . The product of an extremely bright mind."
--San Francisco Chronicle

"An elegant, sharp-minded essay on the need to study religion in a dispassionate way."
--The Economist

"Penetrating . . . a sharp synthesis of a library of evolutionary, anthropological and psychological research on the origin and spread of religion."
--Scientific American

Présentation de l'éditeur

Few forces in the world are as potent as religion: it comforts people in their suffering and inspires them to both magnificent and terrible deeds. In this provocative and timely book, Daniel C. Dennett seeks to uncover the origins of religion and discusses how and why different faiths have shaped so many lives, whether religion is an addiction or a genuine human need, and even whether it is good for our health. Arguing passionately for the need to understand this multifaceted phenomenon, Breaking the Spell offers a truly original and comprehensive explanation for faith.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 1551 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 428 pages
  • Editeur : Penguin (29 mars 2007)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B002RI9MNO
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Word Wise: Activé
  • Lecteur d’écran : Pris en charge
  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.5 étoiles sur 5 2 commentaires client
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°84.709 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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Format: Relié
Un livre essentiel, qu'il faut d'urgence traduire en français. Il serait temps qu'on se réveille en France pour faire face aux intégrismes prosélytes. Sommes nous "bright" de naissance ? Sinon mobilisons nous pour attraper le retard.
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I do not normally read books about atheism,not feeling any need of them. But I am very interested in finding out how this came about (Why religion?) and this book was presented as addressing that question.

There is, of course, no definitive answer to the question. Mr Dennett makes a tour of many hypotheses offered by people (Atran, Boyer, Wilson, Dennett himself et al.) who have studied the subject from the points of view of anthropology, sociology, cognitive sciences, philosophy and so forth. It seems to be quite a thorough tour.

The problem is that one comes away feeling that one has read a long series of what ifs, of conjectures, most of which are not very convincing. So finally, although it does seem somewhat more "reasonable" that religion has arisen everywhere where man has lived, one still does not understand why. All this in spite of Mr Dennett's heroic efforts to cover so many hypotheses.

Still, there are many interesting subjects brought up and it is a stimulating if, finally, rather frustrating read.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta) (Peut contenir des commentaires issus du programme Early Reviewer Rewards)

Amazon.com: 3.9 étoiles sur 5 300 commentaires
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 From Cradle Catholic to a Pseudo Religion to a Skeptic 15 octobre 2016
Par Steven Haack - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
I am posting a letter that I wrote to my siblings as a review of this "enlightening book."

Dear J & J,

Friday night, I decided to slowly read through a book on "religion as a natural phenomenon. As long as I have been in religious circles, no one has attempted to explain to me or even discuss where this idea of religion originated. However, not all religions are the same in regards to intent. Dr. Dennett wrote that sharks and dolphins may have similar attributes and can swim in the same waters, however, as often observed, the shark’s intent is definitely not the same as a dolphin.

In his book “Breaking the Spell” by Daniel C. Dennett wrote “Religious cults (or pseudo religions) and political fanatics are not the only casters of evil spells today. Think of the people who are addicted to drugs, or gambling, or alcohol, or child pornography.” Dr. Dennett also states that religion in America is not the same as religions in other countries.

It seems that religion is important to most of our family members and many Americans. Just look at all the televangelists begging for money and getting it. I might suggest that all of us step back and look at the idea of what is religion in the first place. I suggest not waiting until you are lying in bed sick or lying in bed dying before you attempt to understand this idea of religion. Just because it has been handed down to us through traditions does not make it correct in the first place.

In fact, Jesus practiced a lesson similar to Socrates; as a teacher, he never put someone down because a student does not agree. Thomas is known as doubting Thomas and Jesus never put him down; I prefer to call Thomas a skeptic. In my experience, healthy skepticism might have kept me from participating in a pseudo religion for thirteen years. In my view, healthy skepticism is another way of saying "intellectual honesty." One thing I know for sure is that nothing in life to a human is certain, nothing. None of us really knows anything for sure.

This book is well worth the read for true believers and skeptics.
Good luck to you all.
Steven L. H.
6 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Great Ideas, Weak Delivery 21 août 2015
Par David Swan - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Let me start by saying that Daniel Dennett and I are on the same side of the intellectual fight but as a reviewer I need to be honest in my assessment. There are many ways one might going about selling atheism. In the case of Sam Harris he seems more interested in lobbing bombs and roiling the troops than actually persuading the other side. Christopher Hitchens was an equally heavy hitter but he was much more charismatic and a terrific showman. Even those who virulently opposed Hitchens views were often entertained. By contrast, Dennett is much more professorial. After watching a bunch of Hitchens debates it was clear he crafted his message and went for audience responses. Dennett’s book feels more like a college lecture. Don’t get me wrong, his message is great and sometimes brilliant but this book desperately needed some paring down and added punch.

Daniel Dennett is an intellectual, not a showman. The title ‘Breaking the Spell’ refers to the idea of pulling back the curtain on religion and exposing it as a myth and he compares it to the realization that Santa Claus isn’t real. The entire first chapter is devoted to the question of whether it is ethically responsible to study religion in a scientific manner and the chapter is long and not the least bit riveting. Dennett is so long winded that I frequently find myself zoning out. He circles the block over and over just to get to his destination when he could have just stated his point and moved on. As an example of how unconnected it sometimes feels like Dennett is he defended the ‘Bright’ movement, a movement I found to be ludicrous and embarrassing. Unsurprisingly I never really hear anyone using the term “bright” anymore.

There is a lot of good ideas in the book that I’m sure contemplative atheists will find themselves agreeing with. His book contains intellectual ammunition that atheists can use to defend their own beliefs or punch holes in the beliefs of religionists. He also remains casual enough not to immediately chase away anyone sitting on the fence. I just wish the book had been more engrossing and less dry and dusty.
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 "Breaking the Spell" by Daniel Dennett 18 mars 2014
Par weston - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
It is not surprising that superstitions and creation myths passed down from prehistory evolved into the Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Muslim) with an omnipotent and caring, but incomprehensible, god that created heaven and earth in six days some six thousand years ago and has been listening to our individual prayers ever since. Religion has probably been a net-positive effect in mankind's development, in particular for those (shamen, prophets, imams, bishops and popes) who would strive to pass themselves off as the earthly representatives of such a god. What is surprising is that these ancient superstitions still play such a large and largely pernicious role in mankind's life today, three centuries after the enlightenment and a century after geology and physics have established the age of the earth at 4.6 billion years and the age of the heavens at 13.8 billion years. It is not hard to understand the motivation of these latter-day shamen, who accrue power and wealth thereby, but why do the rest of us, who provide this wealth and power, continue to buy in to these ancient superstitions in the face of clear and contrary scientific evidence?

Religion obviously meets some basic human need that makes most of us willing to overlook its contradictions and transgressions. This book calls for a study of those needs and of how religion satisfies them. The author, a prominent philosophy professor, puts forward a proposal to study religion "scientifically" as a natural phenomenon, and discusses a number of biological, neuroscientific, anthropological, social science and other soft-science investigations that might be undertaken to this end. That is a very good idea, but, as the author acknowledges, it is unlikely that politically powerful religious authorities would submit to such studies, but would more likely continue to respond that religion must be taken on faith and can not be understood by science.

I agree with the author that religion could be studied using the methods of science, but would probably come up with a somewhat different set of scientific methods. In particular, this book puts much emphasis on the currently fashionable "evolution- run-amok" theory made prominent by Richard Dawkins' extension of Darwin's evolutionary theory of trial and error and survival of the fittest to impugn to "selfish" genes, and later to intellectual concepts which he called "memes", a will to propagate themselves. Religions have only existed for an instant on the evolutionary time scale. There is quite a professional (philosophy) literature cited, but most of it is not what I would consider scientific.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Respectful, thought provoking discussion on religion, it's history and it's future. 9 décembre 2014
Par J. Harvey - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Dennett takes us on what amounts to a sort of rough draft, or outline of his hypothesis on how traditional folk religions first developed and then 'culturally evolved' into the sophisticated religions that are popular amongst humanity today. This book will be of great interest to all thinking people, religious or otherwise, who like to think about how our world works. Dennett is up front about the limitations of his ideas and asks as many questions as he does make statements about the matter at hand. The book wraps up with Dennett discussing how we might go about answering some of the questions he puts forward through out. It's in no way a 'religion bash' like Dawkins et al might write and in fact probably the most thought provoking writing on the subject of religion I've come across.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Breaking the spell of corrupt religious beliefs (or memes) 6 août 2015
Par Multiverse - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Dennett is a very good philosopher and writer. He raises many questions about what religion is and why it should be studied scientifically. He leads the reader through paths presenting questions and their possible answers from all sides. He doesn't take sides but does show why some answers are incorrect or need further examination as they have too long been accepted blindly on faith against all evidence to the contrary. The readers that stay with him will gain a great understanding of religion and the philosophical and scientific perspective.
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