Atheist Publishes Secular Bible

Good BookNow that I think about it, it’s amazing that it took so long. Jessica Ravitz reports on A.C. Grayling’s The Good Book: A Humanist Bible for CNN:

The question arose early in British academic A.C. Grayling’s career: What if those ancient compilers who’d made Bibles, the collected religious texts that were translated, edited, arranged and published en masse, had focused instead on assembling the non-religious teachings of civilization’s greatest thinkers?

What if the book that billions have turned to for ethical guidance wasn’t tied to commandments from God or any one particular tradition but instead included the writings of Aristotle, the reflections of Confucius, the poetry of Baudelaire? What would that book look like, and what would it mean?

Decades after he started asking such questions, what Grayling calls “a lifetime’s work” has hit bookshelves. “The Good Book: A Humanist Bible,” subtitled “A Secular Bible” in the United Kingdom, was published this month. Grayling crafted it by using more than a thousand texts representing several hundred authors, collections and traditions.

The Bible would have been “a very different book and may have produced a very different history for mankind,” had it drawn on the work of philosophers and writers as opposed to prophets and apostles, says Grayling, a philosopher and professor at Birkbeck College, University of London, who is an atheist.

“Humanist ethics didn’t claim to be derived from a deity,” he says. “(They) tended to start from a sympathetic understanding of human nature and accept that there’s a responsibility that each individual has to work out the values they live by and especially to recognize that the best of our good lives revolve around having good relationships with people.” …

[continues at CNN]

, , ,

  • Tuna Ghost

    huh. I have to admit, I’m very interested in reading this.

  • Tuna Ghost

    huh. I have to admit, I’m very interested in reading this.

  • Tuna Ghost

    huh. I have to admit, I’m very interested in reading this.

  • De Carabas

    Took so long? Might I direct you to “Jesus of Nazareth” by one Mr. Thomas Jefferson. It is a secular story about Jesus. All the morals, none of the divinity. Also makes a great counterpoint to the whole “Founding fathers were christian” idea.

  • De Carabas

    Took so long? Might I direct you to “Jesus of Nazareth” by one Mr. Thomas Jefferson. It is a secular story about Jesus. All the morals, none of the divinity. Also makes a great counterpoint to the whole “Founding fathers were christian” idea.

  • De Carabas

    Took so long? Might I direct you to “Jesus of Nazareth” by one Mr. Thomas Jefferson. It is a secular story about Jesus. All the morals, none of the divinity. Also makes a great counterpoint to the whole “Founding fathers were christian” idea.

  • De Carabas

    Took so long? Might I direct you to “Jesus of Nazareth” by one Mr. Thomas Jefferson. It is a secular story about Jesus. All the morals, none of the divinity. Also makes a great counterpoint to the whole “Founding fathers were christian” idea.

    • http://disinfo.com/ Majestic

      Thanks De Carabas, good suggestion.

    • Anarchy Pony

      I am surprised that so few people know about that.

  • http://disinfo.com Majestic

    Thanks De Carabas, good suggestion.

  • This guy

    awesome. more books for me to scoff at my friends for not having. joy:)

  • This guy

    awesome. more books for me to scoff at my friends for not having. joy:)

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    What? Some good news on Disinfo? Preposterous!

    This looks like a really good read.

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    What? Some good news on Disinfo? Preposterous!

    This looks like a really good read.

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    What? Some good news on Disinfo? Preposterous!

    This looks like a really good read.

  • Will

    Finally a book I can take door to door and interrupt some Mormon or Jehovah witnesses day. I will make a pamphlet titled the kingdom of reason. I will tell each person I approach that all they need do is ask logic into their hearts and the kingdom of reason is theirs. Oh; and by the way, those pamphlets are a quarter a piece.

  • Will

    Finally a book I can take door to door and interrupt some Mormon or Jehovah witnesses day. I will make a pamphlet titled the kingdom of reason. I will tell each person I approach that all they need do is ask logic into their hearts and the kingdom of reason is theirs. Oh; and by the way, those pamphlets are a quarter a piece.

    • justagirl

      they knock and knock and we peek out the window at them real still. and when they see us we close the curtain. lol! it’s a fun game.

      • GoodDoktorBad

        My peep-hole squirts water…..battery acid might be better….lol

      • Bud Bundy

        A buddy of mine answered the door naked. I’d do the same thing but I’m kind of lacking downstairs.

        • justagirl

          so what. wear a wwjd bracelet and tape some mistletoe to your bellybutton. that would be even better.

      • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

        Yeah my brother once answered one of them shirtless, with somewhere between 4 and 7 katanas of various lengths strapped to him. I wish i saw the expression on their faces.

    • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

      Try these :-) Its like having your own Jack Chick tract handy. I wanna pass out about a million of these…maybe keep em handy for dropping them off in hotel desks…like Gideon bibles but for Atheism.

      http://www.normalbobsmith.com/free/flyers/pamphlet_gif_download.pdf

  • justagirl

    they knock and knock and we peek out the window at them real still. and when they see us we close the curtain. lol! it’s a fun game.

  • Anonymous

    My peep-hole squirts water…..battery acid might be better….lol

  • http://twitter.com/Zordabo ZordaboM

    oh shit that’s all we need, more assholes telling us what to do… go live your own life and make your own decisions

    • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

      Why are you condemning people read? I’m sure theres plenty in that book that is good advice no matter what thing you believe in. It’s interesting to compare things such as Confucius or Aristotle. They are old, and sometimes, things that are old get forgotten… by everybody. Is it so bad to bring back forgotten ideas?

  • http://twitter.com/Zordabo MauriziOiziruaM

    oh shit that’s all we need, more assholes telling us what to do… go live your own life and make your own decisions

  • emperorreagan

    Way to go. Now people have some low hanging fruit for when they want to accuse atheism of being a religion.

  • emperorreagan

    Way to go. Now people have some low hanging fruit for when they want to accuse atheism of being a religion.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    Try these :-) Its like having your own Jack Chick tract handy. I wanna pass out about a million of these…maybe keep em handy for dropping them off in hotel desks…like Gideon bibles but for Atheism.

    http://www.normalbobsmith.com/free/flyers/pamphlet_gif_download.pdf

  • Tuna Ghost

    I find myself wondering more and more about the metaphysics used in this book, seeing as how so many philosophers invoke a deity of some kind as part of their metaphysical systems. Or are they just going to skip that whole discussion? The article seems to be suggesting that the book primarily concerns itself with ethics, but that’s not really what the Bible is.

  • Tuna Ghost

    I find myself wondering more and more about the metaphysics used in this book, seeing as how so many philosophers invoke a deity of some kind as part of their metaphysical systems. Or are they just going to skip that whole discussion? The article seems to be suggesting that the book primarily concerns itself with ethics, but that’s not really what the Bible is.

  • Billary

    Shutup jackass…

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Why are you condemning people read? I’m sure theres plenty in that book that is good advice no matter what thing you believe in. It’s interesting to compare things such as Confucius or Aristotle. They are old, and sometimes, things that are old get forgotten… by everybody. Is it so bad to bring back forgotten ideas?

  • Bud Bundy

    A buddy of mine answered the door naked. I’d do the same thing but I’m kind of lacking downstairs.

  • justagirl

    so what. wear a wwjd bracelet and tape some mistletoe to your bellybutton. that would be even better.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Siragusa/682282532 Mark Siragusa

    All that I really need is The Bible according to Mark Twain

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mark-Siragusa/682282532 Mark Siragusa

    All that I really need is The Bible according to Mark Twain

    • Tuna Ghost

      I think that comes in a box set with “Civics According to Mencken”

  • Anonymous

    Since when do secular humanists feel they need to have a book that unites all their beliefs? IMO, folks who don’t want anything to do with the Bible are better off just ignoring the Bible rather than constructing some sort of analogous text that sounds like a Philosophy 101 textbook.

  • nemoide

    Since when do secular humanists feel they need to have a book that unites all their beliefs? IMO, folks who don’t want anything to do with the Bible are better off just ignoring the Bible rather than constructing some sort of analogous text that sounds like a Philosophy 101 textbook.

    • Dmitry

      Seculars don’t “need” this sort of book but in this current society Grayling, the author, needs money.  One way to attain said required funds is to have a book published.  It’s brilliant really.

  • http://hormeticminds.blogspot.com/ Chaorder Gradient

    Yeah my brother once answered one of them shirtless, with somewhere between 4 and 7 katanas of various lengths strapped to him. I wish i saw the expression on their faces.

  • Tuna Ghost

    I think that comes in a box set with “Civics According to Mencken”

  • OCHIEL JAUHOLO

    KNOWLEDGE OF GOD–NOT god “is the beginning of WISDOM—ANY KNOWLEDGE contrary to that is jPADDED ON BIGOTRY AND IGNORENCE””.THIS ONE IS FOR ATHEIST!!!!!!!!!

    • Anarchy Pony

      Neither your religion or its originators existed prior to 10,000 years ago. Your god is false, and your religion is nothing but a way to justify and rationalize abominable behaviors and social hierarchies.

  • OCHIEL JAUHOLO

    KNOWLEDGE OF GOD–NOT god “is the beginning of WISDOM—ANY KNOWLEDGE contrary to that is jPADDED ON BIGOTRY AND IGNORENCE””.THIS ONE IS FOR ATHEIST!!!!!!!!!

  • OCHIEL JAUHOLO

    YOU CAN ONLY TACKLE AND COMMENT ON WHAT YOU FULLY UNDERSTAND–WORD OF GOD-is BY INSPIRATION. ONE HAS TO LIBERATE ONES HEART AND MIND TO BE ANNIMATED IN THE CROSS not on the CROSS.—THOMAS WAS THAT SKEPTIC AND WHEN THE FULLNESS OF TIME CAME HE WARSHIP THE LORD “MY LORD AND MY GOD”.
    SAUL WHO BECAME PAUL DID WHAT “GOOD BOOK ” HAS DONE” —-WHAT ABOUT THE HYPOTHETICAL ENCOUNTER OF MOSES AND PAHARAOH?

  • OCHIEL JAUHOLO

    YOU CAN ONLY TACKLE AND COMMENT ON WHAT YOU FULLY UNDERSTAND–WORD OF GOD-is BY INSPIRATION. ONE HAS TO LIBERATE ONES HEART AND MIND TO BE ANNIMATED IN THE CROSS not on the CROSS.—THOMAS WAS THAT SKEPTIC AND WHEN THE FULLNESS OF TIME CAME HE WARSHIP THE LORD “MY LORD AND MY GOD”.
    SAUL WHO BECAME PAUL DID WHAT “GOOD BOOK ” HAS DONE” —-WHAT ABOUT THE HYPOTHETICAL ENCOUNTER OF MOSES AND PAHARAOH?

  • http://koowie.com Koowie

    I doubt this will change anyone’s religious thought but it might be a good read just to read all the great philosophers thoughts.

  • http://koowie.com Koowie

    I doubt this will change anyone’s religious thought but it might be a good read just to read all the great philosophers thoughts.

  • Pitchblak696

    Wow! I’m going to have to check this out! Brilliant idea that should’ve been done a long time ago.

  • Pitchblak696

    Wow! I’m going to have to check this out! Brilliant idea that should’ve been done a long time ago.

  • Wanooski

    I am surprised that so few people know about that.

  • Wanooski

    Neither your religion or its originators existed prior to 10,000 years ago. Your god is false, and your religion is nothing but a way to justify and rationalize abominable behaviors and social hierarchies.

  • Wanooski

    Neither your religion or its originators existed prior to 10,000 years ago. Your god is false, and your religion is nothing but a way to justify and rationalize abominable behaviors and social hierarchies.

  • Dmitry

    Seculars don’t “need” this sort of book but in this current society Grayling, the author, needs money.  One way to attain said required funds is to have a book published.  It’s brilliant really.

21