Cutting God in Half - And Putting the Pieces Together Again: A New Approach to Philosophy

Pentire Press (2010)
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Cutting God in Half argues that, in order to tackle climate change, world poverty, extinction of species and our other global problems rather better than we are doing at present we need to bring about a revolution in science, and in academia more generally. We need to put our problems of living – personal, social, global – at the heart of the academic enterprise. How our human world, imbued with meaning and value, can exist and best flourish embedded in the physical universe is, the book argues, our basic problem. It is our fundamental philosophical problem, our fundamental problem of knowledge and understanding, and our fundamental practical problem of living. It is this problem that we fail, at present, to recognize as fundamental – to our cost. It can be understood to arise as a result of cutting God in half – severing the God of Cosmic Power from the God of Value. The first is Einstein’s God, the underlying unity in the physical universe that determines how events occur. The second is what is of most value associated with human life – and sentient life more generally. Having cut God in half in this way, the problem then becomes to see how the two halves can be put together again. This book tackles outstanding aspects of this problem, and in doing so throws out original ideas about science, education, religion, evolutionary theory, free will, quantum theory, and how we should go about tackling our impending global crises. It transpires that bringing our basic problem into sharp focus has revolutionary implications. It becomes clear how and why many aspects of our social and cultural world urgently need to be transformed. Cutting God in Half is written in a lively, accessible style, and ought to be essential reading for anyone concerned about ultimate questions – the nature of the universe, the meaning of life, the future of humanity.

Author's Profile

Nicholas Maxwell
University College London


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