Search results for: the-bonobo-and-the-atheist

The Bonobo and the Atheist

Author : Frans de Waal
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In this lively and illuminating discussion of his landmark research, esteemed primatologist Frans de Waal argues that human morality is not imposed from above but instead comes from within. Moral behavior does not begin and end with religion but is in fact a product of evolution. For many years, de Waal has observed chimpanzees soothe distressed neighbors and bonobos share their food. Now he delivers fascinating fresh evidence for the seeds of ethical behavior in primate societies that further cements the case for the biological origins of human fairness. Interweaving vivid tales from the animal kingdom with thoughtful philosophical analysis, de Waal seeks a bottom-up explanation of morality that emphasizes our connection with animals. In doing so, de Waal explores for the first time the implications of his work for our understanding of modern religion. Whatever the role of religious moral imperatives, he sees it as a “Johnny-come-lately” role that emerged only as an addition to our natural instincts for cooperation and empathy. But unlike the dogmatic neo-atheist of his book’s title, de Waal does not scorn religion per se. Instead, he draws on the long tradition of humanism exemplified by the painter Hieronymus Bosch and asks reflective readers to consider these issues from a positive perspective: What role, if any, does religion play for a well-functioning society today? And where can believers and nonbelievers alike find the inspiration to lead a good life? Rich with cultural references and anecdotes of primate behavior, The Bonobo and the Atheist engagingly builds a unique argument grounded in evolutionary biology and moral philosophy. Ever a pioneering thinker, de Waal delivers a heartening and inclusive new perspective on human nature and our struggle to find purpose in our lives.

The Bonobo and the Atheist In Search of Humanism Among the Primates

Author : Frans de Waal
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In this lively and illuminating discussion of his landmark research, esteemed primatologist Frans de Waal argues that human morality is not imposed from above but instead comes from within. Moral behavior does not begin and end with religion but is in fact a product of evolution. For many years, de Waal has observed chimpanzees soothe distressed neighbors and bonobos share their food. Now he delivers fascinating fresh evidence for the seeds of ethical behavior in primate societies that further cements the case for the biological origins of human fairness. Interweaving vivid tales from the animal kingdom with thoughtful philosophical analysis, de Waal seeks a bottom-up explanation of morality that emphasizes our connection with animals. In doing so, de Waal explores for the first time the implications of his work for our understanding of modern religion. Whatever the role of religious moral imperatives, he sees it as a “Johnny-come-lately” role that emerged only as an addition to our natural instincts for cooperation and empathy. But unlike the dogmatic neo-atheist of his book’s title, de Waal does not scorn religion per se. Instead, he draws on the long tradition of humanism exemplified by the painter Hieronymus Bosch and asks reflective readers to consider these issues from a positive perspective: What role, if any, does religion play for a well-functioning society today? And where can believers and nonbelievers alike find the inspiration to lead a good life? Rich with cultural references and anecdotes of primate behavior, The Bonobo and the Atheist engagingly builds a unique argument grounded in evolutionary biology and moral philosophy. Ever a pioneering thinker, de Waal delivers a heartening and inclusive new perspective on human nature and our struggle to find purpose in our lives.

The Natural World and God

Author : Denis Edwards
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How are we to think about the natural world around us in relation to the God of Jesus? Astronomers, cosmologists, and evolutionary biologists have opened wonderfully new ways of seeing the community of life on Earth, and its place in the universe. At the same time we are facing an extreme crisis of life on our planet. Both of these realities demand that we rethink our theology of animals, plants, ecosystems, as well as galaxies and stars. In this book, Denis Edwards collects together a series of explorations into this kind of theology.

On Atheists and Bonobos

Author : Howard Burton
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This book is based on an in-depth filmed conversation between Howard Burton and primatologist Frans de Waal, Emory University, who is renowned for his work on the behaviour and social intelligence of primates. This thought-provoking conversation examines fascinating questions such as: Are we born with an innate sense of “the good”? Do we learn from others what is “wrong”? Does religion determine, or is it a result of, morality? This carefully-edited book includes an introduction, Aping Morality, and questions for discussion at the end of each chapter: I. Denying Our Inner Animal - Cartesian dogs, religious baggage and false dichotomies II. Morality and Evolution - Between chimpanzees and bonobos III. The Demise of Veneer Theory - Science discovers human cooperation and empathy IV. The Roots of Religion - A sociological approach V. Community Concern - Chimpanzee groups and Golden Rules VI. Beyond Theatrics - Reconciling science, religion and mortality VII. American Exceptionalism - Speculations on religiosity VIII. Testing Morality - Fairness, cooperation, risk-taking and more IX. Reasons for Optimism - Positive behaviour throughout the animal world X. Breaking Down Barriers - Towards species continuity About Ideas Roadshow Conversations Series This book is part of an expanding series of 100+ Ideas Roadshow conversations, each one presenting a wealth of candid insights from a leading expert in a relaxed and informal setting to give non-specialists a uniquely accessible window into frontline research and scholarship that wouldn't otherwise be encountered through standard lectures and textbooks. For other books in this series visit our website (https://ideas-on-film.com/ideasroadshow/).

Risiko und Vertrauen Risk and Trust

Author : Heike Springhart
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Die Komplementärbegriffe Risiko und Vertrauen sind dazu geeignet, biblisch-theologische, systematisch-theologische, ethische und sozialtheoretische Perspektiven in ein produktives Gespräch zu bringen. Die Beiträge dieses Bandes nehmen die Fäden für dieses Gespräch auf und entfalten innovative Impulse für Theologie und Kirchenleitung, für Recht, Ökonomie und Zivilgesellschaft sowie für den Diskurs mit den Naturwissenschaften und die Ethik. Probleme der theologischen Anthropologie kommen dabei ebenso zur Sprache wie das ökonomische Risikomanagement, Risiko und Vertrauen im kirchenleitenden Handeln und das Problem des Rechtspopulismus. Der Band ist Michael Welker zum 70. Geburtstag gewidmet und vereint Beiträge von Autorinnen und Autoren aus Deutschland, den USA, Großbritannien, Ungarn, den Niederlanden und Südafrika. [Risk and Trust] Risk and Trust are complementary terms that can help shape a constructive conversation between biblical, theological, ethical and social theoretical perspectives. Contributions of this volume enter this conversation by unfolding impulses for theology and the church, for law, economics and the civil society as well as for the sciences and ethics. Topics include theological anthropology, trust and risk in economy and the political and theological challenges due to populism. This book is dedicated to Michael Welker for the occasion of his 70th birthday. It consists of contributions by authors from Germany, USA, Great Britain, the Netherlands, and South Africa.

Atheist Overreach

Author : Christian Smith
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In recent years atheism has become ever more visible, acceptable, and influential. Atheist apologists have become increasingly vociferous and confident in their claims: that a morality requiring benevolence towards all and universal human rights need not be grounded in religion; that modern science disproves the existence of God; and that there is nothing innately religious about human beings. In Atheist Overreach, Christian Smith takes a look at the evidence and arguments, and explains why we ought to be skeptical of these atheists' claims about morality, science, and human nature. He does not argue that atheism is necessarily wrong, but rather that its advocates are advancing crucial claims that are neither rationally defensible nor realistic. Their committed worldview feeds unhelpful arguments and contributes to the increasing polarization of today's political landscape. Everyone involved in the theism-atheism debates, in shared moral reflection, and in the public consumption of the findings of science should be committed to careful reasoning and rigorous criticism. This book provides readers with the information they need to participate more knowledgably in debates about atheism and what it means for our society.

Freedom The End of the Human Condition

Author : Jeremy Griffith
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FREEDOM has its own very informative website: visit www.humancondition.com The fastest growing realization everywhere is that humanity can't go on the way it is going. Indeed, the great fear is we're entering endgame where we appear to have lost the race between self-destruction and self-discovery―the race to find the psychologically relieving understanding of our 'good and evil'-afflicted human condition. Well, astonishing as it is, this book by biologist Jeremy Griffith presents the 11th hour breakthrough biological explanation of the human condition necessary for the psychological rehabilitation and transformation of our species! The culmination of 40 years of studying and writing about our species' psychosis, FREEDOM delivers nothing less than the holy grail of insight we have needed to free ourselves from the human condition. It is, in short, as Professor Harry Prosen, a former president of the Canadian Psychiatric Association, asserts in his Introduction, 'The book that saves the world'. Griffith has been able to venture right to the bottom of the dark depths of what it is to be human and return with the fully accountable, true explanation of our seemingly imperfect lives. At long last we have the redeeming and thus transforming understanding of human behaviour! And with that explanation found all the other great outstanding scientific mysteries about our existence are now also able to be truthfully explained―of the meaning of our existence, of the origin of our unconditionally selfless moral instincts, and of why we humans became conscious when other animals haven't. Yes, the full story of life on Earth can finally be told―and all of these incredible breakthroughs and insights are presented here in this 'greatest of all books'.

Empty Hands Open Arms

Author : Deni Ellis Béchard
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“Absorbing . . . Béchard’s masterful, adventure-driven reporting delivers an inspiring account of an all-too-rare ecological success story.” —Booklist Bonobos have captured the public imagination, due not least to their famously active sex lives. Less well known is the fact that these great apes don’t kill their own kind, and that they share nearly 99% of our DNA. Their approach to building peaceful coalitions and sharing resources has much to teach us, particularly at a time when our violent ways have pushed them to the brink of extinction. Animated by a desire to understand bonobos and learn how to save them, Deni Ellis Béchard traveled into the Congo. Empty Hands, Open Arms is the account of this journey. Along the way, we see how partnerships between Congolese and Westerners, with few resources but a common purpose and respect for indigenous knowledge, have resulted in the protection of vast swaths of the rainforest. And we discover how small solutions—found through openness, humility, and the principle that poverty does not equal ignorance—are often most effective in tackling our biggest challenges. Combining elements of travelogue, journalism, and natural history, this incomparably rich book takes the reader not only deep into the Congo, but also into our past and future, revealing new ways to save the environment and ourselves. “Riveting [and] surprisingly uplifting.” —David Suzuki, author of The Sacred Balance “The embodiment of the type of reporting that we dream of reading, but all too rarely encounter—intelligent, engaged, and above all, astonishingly perceptive.” —Dinaw Mengestu, author of The Beautiful Things That Heaven Bears Also published as Of Bonobos and Men.

God and Cosmos

Author : David Baggett
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Naturalistic ethics is the reigning paradigm among contemporary ethicists; in God and Cosmos, David Baggett and Jerry L. Walls argue that this approach is seriously flawed. This book canvasses a broad array of secular and naturalistic ethical theories in an effort to test their adequacy in accounting for moral duties, intrinsic human value, moral knowledge, prospects for radical moral transformation, and the rationality of morality. In each case, the authors argue, although various secular accounts provide real insights and indeed share common ground with theistic ethics, the resources of classical theism and orthodox Christianity provide the better explanation of the moral realities under consideration. Among such realities is the fundamental insight behind the problem of evil, namely, that the world is not as it should be. Baggett and Walls argue that God and the world, taken together, exhibit superior explanatory scope and power for morality classically construed, without the need to water down the categories of morality, the import of human value, the prescriptive strength of moral obligations, or the deliverances of the logic, language, and phenomenology of moral experience. This book thus provides a cogent moral argument for God's existence, one that is abductive, teleological, and cumulative.

A Plea for the Animals

Author : Matthieu Ricard
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A powerful and wide-ranging indictment of the treatment of animals by humans--and an eloquent plea for animal rights. Every cow just wants to be happy. Every chicken just wants to be free. Every bear, dog, or mouse experiences sorrow and feels pain as intensely as any of us humans do. In a compelling appeal to reason and human kindness, Matthieu Ricard here takes the arguments from his best-sellers Altruism and Happiness to their logical conclusion: that compassion toward all beings, including our fellow animals, is a moral obligation and the direction toward which any enlightened society must aspire. He chronicles the appalling sufferings of the animals we eat, wear, and use for adornment or “entertainment,” and submits every traditional justification for their exploitation to scientific evidence and moral scrutiny. What arises is an unambiguous and powerful ethical imperative for treating all of the animals with whom we share this planet with respect and compassion.