Debating Faith – Essays on Science, Religion and Secularism

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by Paul Crook

In this book Professor Crook continues his investigation of the intellectual response to a twentieth century that witnessed unprecedented challenges to western culture and identity, horrific world wars, and revolutionary new science such as the theory of relativity which bred both hope and the threat of nuclear annihilation for humanity. Science and massive social changes seemed to have fatally eroded traditional religion.

This collection of essays ranges across a wide spectrum of thinkers. They include England’s only prime minister/philosopher Arthur Balfour; eminent scientists such as the astrophysicists Arthur Eddington and James Jeans, endocrinologist Lancelot Hogben, and biologist Julian Huxley; novelists like E. M. Forster, Aldous Huxley, Dorothy Sayers and H. G. Wells (who wept over a world at “the end of its tether”); writers on art and civilisation Charles Bell (of Bloomsbury fame) and Christopher Dawson; and the “Brains Trust” stalwart Cyril Joad.

We also look at many religious thinkers from modernist theologians to mystics. They include Hilaire Belloc, William Temple, W. B. Selbie, Charles Raven, Ronald Knox, Evelyn Underhill and, to finish with, the Jesuit paleontologist Teilhard de Chardin who believed the world was evolving towards a mystical “Omega Point”.

We who live in troubled times of pandemics, political extremes and loss of faith might well read our predecessors with profit on crises in their society and culture.

Weight 0.524 kg
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Boolarong Press

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