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Between Faith and Doubt: Dialogues on Religion and Reason by John Hick (auth.)

By John Hick (auth.)

This brief ebook is a full of life discussion among a non secular believer and a skeptic. It covers the entire major matters together with varied principles of God, the nice and undesirable in faith, spiritual adventure and neuroscience, soreness and agony, demise and lifestyles after dying, and contains attention-grabbing autobiographical revelations.

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94) I will never forget that moment of absolute peace and certainty. (95) suddenly this calm, peaceful feeling took over. (147) I became aware of the goodness of everything. (151) These are typical examples of experiences in which many people participate. ' DAVID: Yes, I can see that for those who have such experiences they must be extremely important. JOHN: Indeed. And there are other examples of a different kind and usually lesser intensity coming from participation in religious rituals. We'll come presently to forms of experience in which fewer people participate, but first, still at this everyday level, do you not sense a non-physical dimension to life in the awareness of goodness in our fellow human beings unsolicited acts of kindness and compassion, the response of sympathy with someone in great distress, unselfish and sometimes courageous acts of service to the community, dedicated commitment to creating social justice, examples of heroic self-sacrifice for others ...

JOHN: Yes, it does sometimes seem to. What Do We Mean by God? 2S Even with physical illnesses? JOHN: Yes, if there is a psycho-somatic element in the illness, as there often is. Then our thoughts affect the unwell person's mind, which in turn affects their body. DAVID: Well, I'm not going to say that all this is impossible. Though whether there is any such a thing as mind-to-mind causation - extra-sensory perception or telepathy - seems to me extremely doubtful. However, returning to your own religion, I can see that it is turning out to be fairly complex and a long way removed from what people get in the churches.

Most interesting of all, those who report religious experience are more likely than others to be in a good state of psychological well-being. 2 And of course there may be many more than those who have come to the attention of the researchers. This was done mainly by the Alister Hardy Research Centre, and those who happened to read their newspaper ads inviting those who had had such experiences to contact it must be a very small proportion of the total population. So I think it's reasonable to assume that we should think of a far higher proportion than a third.

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