In his magnum opus, The Secular Age, the philosopher Charles Taylor charts western society’s unprecedented shift from a consensus belief in transcendent reality to a worldview that is much more immanent or ‘this-world’. Taylor argues, rightly, that we can over-emphasize the extent to which we have left behind a belief in transcendent reality as we Read more…

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How do you fit experiences of ecstasy, awe, wonder, the Sublime, or the Numinous into a materialist paradigm, without reducing or devaluing such experiences? With difficulty. I’ve spent an enjoyable few days reading various works by the Four Horsemen of New Atheism – Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens and Daniel Dennett. For Harris, Hitchens Read more…

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Just following on from my post below, and thinking out loud, it strikes me that both Christians and Skeptics are interested in evidence, but they have a very different idea of what constitutes evidence. Christians – particularly charismatic Christians – are very into evidence. No matter what they might say about not testing God, not Read more…

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Sorry I missed last week’s newsletter. I’ve had some hardcore flu which robbed me of all will-power, ambition and desire, and left me flitting like a dead bat through the fevered corridors of my mind. Have you ever seen a dead bat flit? Not pretty. I managed to get out of bed to run a Read more…

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Last month I interviewed the philosopher Roger Scruton – the interview is on YouTube, above. If you want to download it as an MP3 just copy the URL and take it here. The interview was inspired by this interesting article which Roger wrote for Aeon Magazine, in which he warned that modern culture was being Read more…

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