Weekly Links March 14th-21st 2014

An enlightening, nuanced discussion about the nature of religion between two philosophers, in which I see the naive view of religion roundly criticized for being too simple a picture of what draws so many humans to religion, and keeps them there.

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/03/09/deconstructing-god/

“I’m not flying Delta because I’m interested in Delta. I’m flying Delta because it’s convenient or I got the miles on it. The idea is to get somewhere. I’m practicing Judaism because that’s my airline, because I was born into it and I think it’s got a deeply profound, ancient and relevant toolbox for a good life, but the end goal is a good life, not to be Jewish. To be human. To be there for myself and others. And that’s a totally different proposition.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/16/nyregion/lab-shul-is-an-experimental-jewish-gathering-still-in-a-beta-phase.html?_r=0

“There is no one secret to life, other than that there is no one secret to life. If you must have a transcendent idea then make it a search for “the good” or “the beautiful” or “the useful”, always realizing that your answers will be personal, finite and never final. The Anglo-American philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre said “The good life is the life spent seeking the good life.” That implies effort. We can have no satisfaction, no meaning, without effort.”

http://www.samharris.org/blog/item/the-significance-of-our-insignificance

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