WHY I AM NOT A CHRISTIAN by Bertrand Russell


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Russell's title here comes from the first selection, a lecture delivered in London in 1927, and is followed by a collection of essays on religious and moral questions written between the years 1903 and 1954. Authority on mathematics and logic, Lord Russell's arguments embody his trained approach, pursue abstractions in orderly fashion and offer provocative material for his opponents. He is not a Christian because he finds the propositions offered in support of Christian tenets unconvincing: the appeal to natural law, the arguments from Design and for the uncaused Cause have no validity: the moral or ethical argument for a Divinity is specially rejected. Other thinking embraces freedom and the colleges, sexual ethics, Catholic and Protestant skeptics, while ""A Free Man's Worship"" and ""What I Believe"" balance off his whipping boys and offer a personal credo. ""A Free Man's Worship"" is an admirable, almost stoic, statment of a brilliant materialist mind which offers no panaceas, maps out no new directions and develops a lonely way -- ""freedom comes only to those who no longer ask of life that it shall yield them any of those personal goods that are subject to the mutations of time"". As an appendix is an account of ""How Bertrand Russell Was Prevented from Teaching at The College of the City of New York"". A service, in offering, in one place, the thoughts of over half a century, of a man profoundly concerned with important questions. Critically stimulating.

Pub Date: Sept. 17th, 1957
Publisher: Simon & Schuster