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Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart: Rewriting the…

Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart: Rewriting the Ten Commandments for the…

by Lex Bayer, John Figdor

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Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart rewrites the ten commandments for agnostic atheist humanist. Its an interesting idea and the 10 "non-commandments" they came up with are pretty good at giving direction to what atheist really believe. They explain how one can be an atheist and still have morals and behave ethically. It also shows why atheist came to the conclusion that there isn't a god(s) and how to to use that same process to evaluate various other situations and the world. What makes them non-commandments though is that they are subject to change if/when new evidence comes to light or as the world changes. I was wary about explaining atheism in a religious context as that has been happening way too much lately and provokes believers, but I think this was done in a tasteful way and wasn't insulting to the commandments or to believers. ( )
  GrlIntrrptdRdng | Sep 4, 2015 |
The authors use a Chesterton quote to motivate a quest to outline their atheist credo in 10 non-commandments. They are somewhat misguided in using the 10 commandments,which are not a credo, but it does give a reason to limit their credo to 10 simple statements. They present quite a few very interesting ideas and provide an example of how one could construct a framework for ethical thought without the need for a god or gods. I suggest every thinking, ethical human would be served by reading this.

I was especially entertained by their inversion of Pascal's wager. In there version there is no way to tell whether A) there is a god who will reward you with eternal life in heaven only if you commit suicide in 10 minutes of receiving his good news or B) there is no such god. Considering that you are at risk of losing eternal happiness you should accept the wager and commit suicide. They also present the trolley car paradox in discussing ethics. You can watch a trolley car run over and kill 5 people or throw someone on the tracks to stop the trolley and save the five others. Do you stand by or do you sacrifice that person? As they discuss there are no objective ethical principles you have a choice to make and there are all sort of questions that come to mind. Do you know the people involved? Are the 5 people your closest family and friends. I wonder if you could extort money from the people involved in making your decision. Is that too unethical? :) ( )
  joeydag | Jul 23, 2015 |
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Lex Bayerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Figdor, Johnmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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This book shows that atheism need not be only reactionary (against religion and God), but rather provides a clear set of constructive principles to live by that establish atheism as a positive worldview. The book encourages and guides the reader through the process of formulating his or her own set of personal beliefs.… (more)

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