Katherine Parker's Reviews > The Varieties of Scientific Experience: A Personal View of the Search for God

The Varieties of Scientific Experience by Carl Sagan
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Dec 29, 08

bookshelves: books-about-god-absence-thereof
Read in December, 2008

Carl Sagan rules the Universe, kind of literally. I wish I were as smart as CS.

Eric got me this book for Christmas, and I read it straight through, even the Q&A transcripts in the back. If you are interested in spirituality but don't believe in the Big Daddy in the Sky, if our mere existence (not to mention manatees, ferns, toads, the molten core of the earth, and billions and billions of stars) makes you sorta awestruck when you pause to think about it, this book will not fail to delight. I was happy to read that one of my main beefs with monotheistic religion (namely, that most people's view of God is too small - a micromanager who is watching over every aspect of your life, arranging it specially for you) was brought up by CS, who agrees with me. He also makes a beautiful argument that one of the best ways to search for/know/glorify God is to try to understand the natural world, the universe, and the laws that govern its operation. Even if you do believe in the esteemed JC as Your Personal Savior, you should still read this book. No matter who you are, this book will enlarge your idea of how amazing the universe is, shrink your sense about your own importance in it, and maybe spur you to see every moment of consciousness, every animal, plant, drop of water on this planet, as infinitely precious and worthy of esteem and care.
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