Flourishing: Why We Need Religion in a Globalized World

Miroslav Volf. Yale Univ., $28 (304p) ISBN 978-0-300-18653-6
Yale University theologian Volf (A Public Faith) brilliantly weaves several strands of argument into an ambitious brief for the positive functions of religion in today's global village, where the negative consequences of religion are too often written in the blood of innocents. Volf lays out his argument systematically, first establishing globalization as an economic reality. Religion, he next proposes, is thriving globally, and that force can provide an alternative to a purely material, ultimately unsatisfying model of human flourishing. Religions have an unfortunate track record of killing people in God's name, Volf concedes. He then considers religious exclusivism, usually understood as the reason for violence, and describes a way that competing religious truth claims and political pluralism can coexist. A quarter of his carefully nuanced argument falls within the book's extensive endnotes, which may be good for the academy but require the reader to patiently flip back and forth. His formidably grounded scope is wide, drawing from current affairs, comparative religions, and Christian theology. Most bracing is his epilogue, which draws simple conclusions about religion and human thriving: "Attachment to God amplifies and deepens enjoyment of the world." (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 12/14/2015
Release date: 01/12/2016
Genre: Religion
MP3 CD - 978-1-4945-6529-9
Compact Disc - 978-1-4945-1529-4
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-0-300-19055-7
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-0-300-22713-0
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