By Ronald Dworkin
In his final e-book, Ronald Dworkin addresses questions that women and men have requested throughout the a long time: what's faith and what's God's position in it? what's loss of life and what's immortality? in accordance with the 2011 Einstein Lectures, faith with no God is galvanized via comments Einstein made that if faith contains awe towards mysteries which "manifest themselves within the maximum knowledge and the main radiant attractiveness, and which our boring schools can understand in basic terms within the such a lot primitive forms," then, he, Einstein, was once a spiritual person.
Dworkin joins Einstein's feel of cosmic secret and sweetness to the declare that worth is goal, self sufficient of brain, and immanent on the earth. He rejects the metaphysics of naturalism--that not anything is genuine other than what might be studied via the traditional sciences. trust in God is one manifestation of this deeper worldview, yet now not the single one. The conviction that God underwrites worth presupposes a previous dedication to the self sufficient fact of that value--a dedication that's to be had to nonbelievers besides. So theists proportion a dedication with a few atheists that's extra primary than what divides them. Freedom of faith should still stream no longer from a appreciate for trust in God yet from the perfect to moral independence.
Dworkin was hoping that this brief e-book may give a contribution to rational dialog and the softening of spiritual worry and hatred. faith with out God is the paintings of a humanist who famous either the chances and obstacles of humanity.
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We will see in Chapter 2 that when scientists confront the unimaginable vastness of space and the astounding complexity of atomic particles, they have an emotional reaction that matches Otto’s description surprisingly well. Indeed, many of them use the very term “numinous” to describe what they feel. They ﬁnd the universe awe-inspiring and deserving of a kind of emotional response that at least borders on trembling. But of course I do not mean, in speaking of faith, that the fact that a moral conviction survives reﬂection is itself an argument for that conviction.
This is not grounded realism: we do not suppose that we have a special beautydetecting capacity that can be independently certiﬁed in some way. Still, we know that the sunset is beautiful. 45 RELIGION WITHOUT GOD But the beauty we ﬁnd in nature is in one way special and puzzling. You are spellbound at your ﬁ rst sight of the Grand Canyon. You ﬁ nd it aweinspiring. Then you learn that, contrary to popu lar opinion, the Canyon was in fact recently created by gifted architects and artists of the Disney Corporation so that it might eventually become the site of the largest theme park the world has ever known.
And of course I do not mean that value judgments are in the end only subjective. Our felt conviction that cruelty is wrong is a conviction that cruelty is really wrong; we cannot have that conviction without thinking that it is objectively true. Acknowledging the role of 20 R EL I GI O U S AT H E I S M ? felt, irresistible conviction in our experience of value just recognizes the fact that we have such convictions, that they can survive responsible reﬂection, and that we then have no reason at all, short of further evidence or argument, to doubt their truth.
Religion Without God by Ronald Dworkin