A Religion of Nature

A Religion of Nature❮Read❯ ➪ A Religion of Nature Author Donald A. Crosby – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk The beauty sublimity and wonder of nature have been justly celebrated in all of the religious traditions of the world but usually these traditions have focused on beings or powers presumed to lie behi The beauty sublimity and wonder of nature have been justly celebrated in all of the religious traditions of the world but usually these traditions have focused on beings or powers presumed to lie behind A Religion PDF \ nature providing nature's ultimate explanation and meaning In a radical departure Donald A Crosby makes an elouent case for regarding nature itself as the focus of religion conceived without God gods or animating spirits of any kind and argues that nature is metaphysically ultimate He explores the concept of nature the place of humans in nature the responsibilities of humans to one another and to their natural environments and offers a religious vision that grants to nature the kind of reverence awe love and devotion formerly reserved for God Crosby also shares his personal journey from theistic faith to A Religion of Nature. I just finished reading A Religion of Nature by Donald A Crosby And while it wasn’t the most pleasurable reading experience it was still an important one Crosby Professor Emeritus of Philosophy at Colorado State University writes in the style of an analytic philosopher—which is to say that his writing is exceedingly clear direct and understandable but not particularly poetic or moving I can see where many non philosophers would be put off by his style of writing But I think that’s a shame because A Religion of Nature is an important book that should be read widely especially by PagansIn A Religion of Nature Crosby takes on one of the most significant and influential claims that has been made and often taken for truth in philosophy; namely that facts and values are separate things and values cannot be derived from facts In this section of the book he draws heavily on the American Pragmatists for support for his own position and as someone in love with John Dewey this thrilled me For some this might seem like nothing than a bunch of dry academic point making But taking on this position is a vitally important first step in arguing that values can indeed be derived from natureCrosby argues that values can in fact be derived from nature In one of two pivotal chapters of the book he offers an account of the values that he believes inhere in nature Here he uses the term “value” in two senses of the word as things of value or worthy of being valued and also values as principles standards or ideals with which we evaluate things and actions in the world The things of value in nature are life biological species ecosystems the biosphere the diversity of lifeforms and “the creativity that gave rise to that diversity” Crosby 82 The ideals he argues are inherent in nature are splendor practical values moral values and religious values His argument in this chapter is clear and persuasiveIn another pivotal chapter Crosby argues that nature can be understood as a proper subject for “religious commitment and concern” 118 He begins the chapter by arguing that the religious is set off from other sorts of phenomena because of the role functional characteristics of the religious ua religion Here he argues that the religious is distinct from other phenomena in its “Uniueness Primacy Pervasiveness Rightness Permanence and Hiddenness” 118; categories likely to be easily accepted by pantheist and humanists but perhaps found wanting for those who insist on the necessity of a personal goddess for suitable religionI should probably note that Crosby is no pantheist He is not arguing that spirit pervades nature Rather that nature is worthy of religious reverence and commitment even without conceptualizing nature as divine Crosby’s notion of nature is not dissimilar to that of a scientist In fact he sets out to articulate a religion that it entirely compatible with a scientific world view And this might be his greatest strength for some readersHowever as much as I intellectually agreed with every point me made as much as I loved the philosophical tradition he worked within as much as I found his argument persuasive I did not ultimately feel satisfied by his account I guess I am of a pantheist than I realized Because the world he described and the religion that follows from it felt a bit cold and empty to me And no matter how much I agreed with his project in principle I didn’t feel the potential for communion with nature in his workThat may have something to do with the writing He’s clearly writing for an audience of academic philosophers There are norms of analytical writing that he’s following perhaps even so since his chosen topic nature religion is so closely associated with people much to woo woo for philosophers’ liking or respect As a result this book didn’t grab me in the way that Abrams’ did I agree with much of what Crosby says But I am not sure I want to dwell in the world he describes Although I am in basic agreement with what Crosby writes I disagree with his philosophical treatment of values as inherent in nature apart from cognitive assessment by sentient beingsBut concerning naturalism from a spiritual perspective The world of nature is extremely valuable and should be treated with respect and reverence Nature is the source of all existence and of all life; and as such it deserves to be treated with the respect and reverence normally offered to deities From the perspective of spiritual naturalism nature is the god of creation

A Religion of Nature PDF Ë A Religion  PDF \
  • Paperback
  • 212 pages
  • A Religion of Nature
  • Donald A. Crosby
  • English
  • 05 April 2015
  • 9780791454541