Religion Without God

Ronald Dworkin, Author
Ronald Dworkin. Harvard Univ., $17.95 (192p) ISBN 978-0-674-72682-6
Reviewed on: 10/07/2013
Release date: 10/01/2013
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For years, the Christian Right has been arguing that secular humanism, an ethical and humanistic system of viewing the world without reference to God, should be considered a religion. Now, from the opposite direction, Dworkin (Justice for Hedgehogs) argues the same. In his last book, the late Dworkin, an atheist, believes that atheists share with theists a strong ethical sensibility as well as an appreciation of aesthetics that opens them to a sense of awe and an experience of the sublime that is similar to religious transcendence. He also asserts, in what is no doubt music to the ears of Christian evangelicals, a belief that “the two assumptions—that a god does or does not exist—seem on a par from the perspective of science.” Although it will possibly outrage such fellow atheists as Richard Dawkins, who want to keep a distinct demarcation between religion and atheism, Dworkin’s characteristically well-argued book raises many provocative questions worthy of further discussion. (Oct.) ■