Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion by Sam Harris
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
BOOK DESCRIPTION: For the millions of people who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’s new book is a guide to meditation as a rational spiritual practice informed by neuroscience and psychology.
From bestselling author, neuroscientist, and “new atheist” Sam Harris, Waking Up is for the increasingly large numbers of people who follow no religion, but who suspect that Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history could not have all been epileptics, schizophrenics, or frauds. Throughout the book, Harris argues that there are important truths to be found in the experiences of such contemplatives—and, therefore, that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow.
Waking Up is part seeker’s memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris—a scientist, philosopher, and famous sceptic—could write it. -- AMAZON
MY REVIEW: I enjoyed reading this book despite its obvious flaws. The chapters seem disconnected from each other as if the connecting thread has broken. About half way through I started wondering whether I was reading a different book. And, near the end, it seemed that Harris had moved a long way from his emphasis on scientific evidence to support claims that are made about spirituality. But there's lots of ideas to think about. Harris communicates clearly (mostly) with wit and incisive critique of that with which he disagrees. I particularly appreciated his debunking of so-called near death experiences (NDEs) and charlatan gurus. Definitely worth a read.
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