Religion
Why I Left, Why I Stayed
Conversations on Christianity Between an Evangelical Father and His Humanist Son
By Tony Campolo and Bart Campolo
Review by Bob Lane on Tue, Sep 26th 2017.
Why I Left, Why I Stayed by Tony Campolo and Bart CampoloWe certainly do not need to be reminded that history is filled with so called religious wars. In fact there are long lists available on social media (e.g., here) and, of course, there is an ongoing debate about just what contribution religion makes to our warlike history. William T. Cavanaugh in his Myth of Religious Violence (2009) argues that what is termed "religious wars" is a largely "Western dichotomy" and a modern invention, arguing that all wars that are classed as "religious" have secular (economic or political) ramifications. Similar opinions were expressed as early as the 1760s, dur
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The Sense of Self
Perspectives from Science and Zen Buddhism
By Richard W. Sear
Review by Joseph Higgins on Tue, Sep 19th 2017.
Throughout The Sense of Self, Richard Sears writes with the assurance of someone who is a true expert in their field. In this instance, the 'field' in question is the profound and timeless musing, 'who am I? – a question that plagues both scientists and philosophers. Rather than taking the typical approach to answering this multifarious question, which is to parse it down to an esoteric perspective, Sears is content to embrace the matter from all angles, resulting in a richly multi-disciplinary monograph that breaches diverse insights from empirical research and principles of Eastern wis
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The Sense of Self by Richard W. Sear

Corporal Punishment, Religion, and United States Public Schools
By Jane Hall Fitz-Gibbon
Review by Wendy C. Hamblet, Ph.D on Tue, Aug 8th 2017.
Corporal Punishment, Religion, and United States Public Schools by Jane Hall Fitz-GibbonWith Corporal Punishment, Religion, and United States Public Schools, Jane Hall Fitz-Gibbon offers us a welcome addition to broaden and further nuance our understanding of education in American schools. While the United States admittedly falls far behind other developed nations in the academic quality of its public education system, few scholars as yet have specifically addressed the methods applied to "school" American children for behavior modification, which as Fitz-Gibbon demonstrates, is often deeply rooted in religious belief, as opposed educational philosophy. Since the mid-1800s,
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The Delight of Being Ordinary
A Road Trip with the Pope and the Dalai Lama
By Roland Merullo
Review by Beth Cholette, Ph.D. on Tue, Jun 13th 2017.
Author Roland Merullo has written twenty-two previous books of both fiction and non-fiction.  He is best-known for his prior series of road trip novels, Breakfast with Buddha, Lunch with Buddha,and Dinner with Buddha.  In these cross-country adventures, Merullo struck just the right chord, finding a balance of intelligence, humor, wit, inspiration, and poignancy.  Merullo recaptures this magic in his latest work, The Delight of Being Ordinary.  Whereas the Buddha books featured well-meaning but sometimes-befuddled American Otto Ringling, Ordinary introduces the reader to
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The Delight of Being Ordinary by Roland Merullo

What Is Buddhist Enlightenment?
By Dale S. Wright
Review by Bob Lane, MA on Tue, Jan 24th 2017.
What Is Buddhist Enlightenment? by Dale S. WrightKing Lear is a play as profound as it is puzzling. It seems to be uncompromising in its attitude to the nature of things. Either its last scene is a powerful continuation of the theme of self delusion or it is an intimation of immortality. The story of Lear is the story of how a king can become a man. Every action, every word of the last scene functions as an onslaught on all fundamental negations of human dignity; and, therefore, the central thrust of the play is positive and creative.1 One of the main critical problems arises in attempting to understand the "blinding" scene, which is o
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A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy
By Steven M. Emmanuel (Editor)
Review by Finn Janning, PhD on Tue, Dec 20th 2016.
A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy, edited by Steven M. Emmanuel, is the kind of book that lies on your desk while you try to gather the strength to interact with it. The book is more than 700 pages long and consists of a collection of 44 essays divided into five parts: Conceptual Foundations, Major Schools of Buddhist Thought, Themes in Buddhist Philosophy, Buddhist Meditation, and Contemporary Issues and Applications. The scope of the book is amazing. The essays are well written and clear. If you read them all, you will encounter several repetitions, but I assume it comes with the scope. A
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A Companion to Buddhist Philosophy by Steven M. Emmanuel (Editor)

Big Dreams
The Science of Dreaming and the Origins of Religion
By Kelly Bulkeley
Review by Benjamin Beit-Hallahmi, Ph.D. on Tue, Oct 25th 2016.
Big Dreams by Kelly BulkeleyKelly Bulkeley is seriously interested in both dreaming and religion. He has published Dreaming in the Classroom: Practices, Methods, and Resources in Dream Education (with Philip King and Bernard Welt) Dreaming in the World's Religions: A Comparative History, and American Dreamers: What Dreams Tell Us about the Political Psychology of Conservatives, Liberals, and Everyone Else (Beacon Press, 2008). This book, which proposes to combine research on dreaming with ideas about the origins of religion, is both scholarly and frustrating. That is because it provides the reader with interesting revi
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The Spirit of Tibetan Buddhism
By Sam van Schaik
Review by Wendy C. Hamblet, Ph.D. on Tue, Aug 16th 2016.
Tibetan Buddhism has an estimated ten to twenty million adherents worldwide, and yet people generally know little about the tradition apart from recognizing its head, the Dalai Lama, and its rough recent history since communist China invaded Tibet in 1950. Even among scholars of Eastern traditions, many thinkers consider the vajrayana aspects of Tibetan Buddhism, from the artwork to the ritual practices to the unique material culture, to be the features that render Tibetan Buddhism distinctive in character from other lineages of Buddhism. In his new book, The Spirit of Tibetan Buddhism, Sam Va
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The Spirit of Tibetan Buddhism by Sam van Schaik

 
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