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New/updated essays in recent months.
Why this web site is different.
Planned future essays.
Why so many essays on sexual topics?

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Sponsored link.

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new symbolThe following essays were created or updated during the past 12 months:

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Why this web site is different.

Essays planned for the near future.

Why does this web site have so many essays on sexual & gender minorities?

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Sponsored link:

 

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2018-March's book selection

book cover"3 Theories of Everything" by Ellis Potter

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $2.89 in Kindle format, or U.S. $13.36 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

"What is reality? What is the meaning of human life? Why do we suffer? In this simple volume, international lecturer Ellis Potter explores three major worldviews that propose radically different answers to these eternal questions. In clear and compelling language, Potter shows us that the three worldviews, and the unique hope that each offers to humanity, have profoundly different consequences for how we see everyday reality and the ultimate purpose of our lives.

This book is a concise, reader friendly look at 3 basic ways of seeing reality from the East and the West. It wrestles with the problem of suffering and finds solutions in each of the 3 points of view. It is respectful of each worldview and engages the readers in some deep and hard-hitting questions about how they identify themselves and how they look at and understand the world. Reading, thinking about and perhaps discussing this book will bring the readers into a clearer focus of their own way of seeing reality.

3 Theories of Everything is based on lectures by the author and has a large section of questions and answers drawn from actual discussions."

This book received an average of 4.3 stars out of a maximum of 5 by Amazon customers.

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New and updated essays:

This web site had 35 newly created, re-written, or significantly updated essays so far during 2019-MAR, including the above book review.

In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded above:

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2019-February's book selection:

book cover"The INTRAfaith Conversation: How Do Christians Talk Among Ourselves About INTERfaith Matters " by Susan M. Strouse (Author), Megan Rohrer (Editor)

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $7.47 in Kindle format, or U.S. $20.00 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

The Intrafaith Conversation: How Do Christians Talk Among Ourselves About Interfaith Matters? by Susan M. Strouse is a guide for individuals and faith communities to explore what it means to be a Christian in a multifaith world. The Rev. Dr. Susan M. Strouse is currently the pastor at First United Lutheran Church in San Francisco.

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New and updated essays:

This web site had 41 newly created, re-written, or significantly updated essays so far during 2019-FEB, including the above book review.

In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:

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2019-January's book selection:

book cover "The History of the Devil: With 350 Illustrations" By Paul Carus.

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $9.71 in Kindle format, or U.S. $16.95 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

"A pioneer in the promotion of interfaith dialogue, Paul Carus (1852–1919) was a highly regarded writer on philosophy and comparative religion and a major influence in introducing Buddhist and other Eastern ideas to the West. The History of the Devil is his magnum opus, exploring the evolution of the idea of evil and the concept of Satan from antiquity to modern times.

Carus follows the devil around the world, highlighting satanic manifestations in a fascinating variety of cultures and historic periods. In addition to examining the concepts of good and evil as religious and philosophical ideas, he discusses the particulars of demonology in ancient Egypt and Persia, in Hindu and Buddhist thought, in early Christianity, and throughout the Inquisition and Reformation. At once scholarly and intriguing, the text is enhanced by 350 rare and fascinating illustrations."

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New and updated essays:

This web site had 63 newly created, re-written, or significantly updated essays so far during 2019-JAN, including the above book review.

In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:

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2018-December's selection:

book cover"Jesus Before the Gospels: How the Earliest Christians Remembered, Changed, and Invented Their Stories of the Savior" By Bart D. Ehrman

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $6.34 in Kindle format, or U.S. $11.48 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

Throughout much of human history, our most important stories were passed down orally including the stories about Jesus before they became written down in the Gospels. In this fascinating and deeply researched work, leading Bible scholar Bart D. Erhman investigates the role oral history has played in the New Testament and how the telling of these stories not only spread Jesus' message but helped shape it.

A master explainer of Christian history, texts, and traditions, Ehrman draws on a range of disciplines, including psychology and anthropology, to examine the role of memory in the creation of the Gospels. Explaining how oral tradition evolves based on the latest scientific research, he demonstrates how the act of telling and retelling impacts the story, the storyteller, and the listener -- crucial insights that challenge our typical historical understanding of the silent period between when Jesus lived and died and when his stories began to be written down.

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New and updated essays:

This web site had 50 newly created, re-written, or updated essays so far during 2018-DEC, including the above book review.
In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:

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2018-November's selection

book cover"The History of the Devil and the Idea of Evil: From the Earliest Times to the Present Day" by Paul Carus

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $0.76 in Kindle format, or U.S. $9.99 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

"From ancient Egyptian religions to Judaism, Hinduism to Buddhism, Christianity to Islam, as well as many more, Carus analyses each religion in turn to expose their views of the devil and where those views came from.

He takes the reader from five thousand years ago through to near the present day to give a wide overview of changing views on good and evil and how different civilisations created varying ideas of the devil.

In the last five hundred years of history the devil has appeared to be marginalised as only a literary figure rather than a genuine fear, but Carus demonstrates how throughout the Reformation, the Inquisition and even the nineteenth century, fear of the devil was extremely real.

Paul Carus provides an extremely thorough survey of various ideas about the devil along with what is good and what is evil.

Carus was a pioneering author and thinker of the early twentieth century. He became the first managing editor of the Open Court Publishing Company which aimed to provide a forum for the discussion of philosophy, science, and religion, and to make philosophical classics widely available by making them affordable. As an author he published 75 books and 1500 articles. He died in Februrary 1919."

New and updated essays:

This web site had 40 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during 2018-NOV, including the above book review.
In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:

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2018-October's selection

book cover"The Practical Stoicism: Your Step-By-Step Guide to an Ancient Yet Effective Philosophy to live a life of wisdom, perseverance and Joy" by Nicholas Mayor

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $0.98 in Kindle format, or U.S. $9.99 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

"... the ancient yet effective philosophy of stoicism is the way to live the modern life.

You wouldn't be the first person to explore this unique way of living, our history's greatest minds from George Washington to Frederick the Great to Ralph Waldo Emerson, along with today's top performers including sport coaches to CEOs and celebrities have already embraced the wisdom of the ancient Stoics.

This web site had 63 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during 2018-OCT, including the above book review.
In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:

New and updated essays:

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2018-September's selection

book cover "So You Thought You Knew: Letting Go of Religion" by Joshua Tongol.

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
U.S. $5.06 in Kindle format, or U.S. $14.99 plus postage in paperback.

Webmaster's comment:

A phenomenal book. It has received more than 100 five-star reviews (the highest rating) from Amazon customers. The most engaging book I have read in years. I decided to re-schedule the book originally selected for this month to 2019-MAR, and to substitue this book.

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Amazon.com book review:

"Tired of religion?
What if almost everything you were taught about Christianity is wrong?
Would you give up on faith altogether? Or is it possible to rediscover--with fresh eyes--a richer and more satisfying understanding of God and spirituality?

So You Thought You Knew is a refreshing journey written straight from the heart. It's about thinking outside the 'institutional walls' of Christianity and asking the hard questions. It boldly says in public what many people are thinking in private. And its hilarious stories and life-changing insights will inspire those who are dissatisfied with fear-driven religion but believe--deep down--there's a better message out there for the world to hear.

This book has received 185 reviews of which 78% were five-star reviews -- the highest value.

This web site had 56 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during 2018-SEP, including the above book review.
In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below:

New and updated essays:

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2018-August's selection:

book cover"Elements of Pantheism: A Spirituality of Nature and the Universe 3rd Edition" by Dr. Paul Harrison.

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
Available for $5.10 in Kindle format, or $9.93 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

"At the heart of modern scientific pantheism is reverence for Nature and the Universe. It offers a challenging alternative, beyond theism and atheism, with a joyful approach to our lives and a caring concern for all life on this earth. Pantheism is a 2,500 year-old belief system expressed by many famous thinkers and artists including Lao Tzu, Heraclitus, Spinoza, Wordsworth, Whitman, Emerson, Einstein and Carl Sagan. Today, pantheism is seeing a revival as the underlying world view of many environmentalists, of leading scientists, of nature-revering pagans, and of non-theists looking for a more embracing perspective.

The web site had 36 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during 2018-AUG, including the above book review.
In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below: New and updated essays:

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2018-July's selection

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"The Moral Arc: How Science Makes Us Better People "Â by Michael Shermer

Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store.
Available for $10.16 in Kindle format, or $10.48 plus postage in hardcover, or $5.20 plus postage in paperback.

Amazon.com book review:

"From Galileo and Newton to Thomas Hobbes and Martin Luther King, Jr., thinkers throughout history have consciously employed scientific techniques to better understand the non-physical world. The Age of Reason and the Enlightenment led theorists to apply scientific reasoning to the non-scientific disciplines of politics, economics, and moral philosophy. Instead of relying on the woodcuts of dissected bodies in old medical texts, physicians opened bodies themselves to see what was there; instead of divining truth through the authority of an ancient holy book or philosophical treatise, people began to explore the book of nature for themselves through travel and exploration; instead of the supernatural belief in the divine right of kings, people employed a natural belief in the right of democracy. In this provocative and compelling book, Shermer will explain how abstract reasoning, rationality, empiricism, skepticism -- scientific ways of thinking -- have profoundly changed the way we perceive morality and, indeed, move us ever closer to a more just world."

The web site had 48 newly created, re-written, or updated essays during 2018-JUL, including the above book review.
In addition, we make major and minor updates to many essays each day that are not recorded below: