Kamituel's Reviews > The Age of Reason

The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine
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Mar 06, 10

Read in May, 2009

This book consists of two parts. In the first one Thomas Paine is laying ground for deism on the basis of his own opinions and insights. But he is not saying he is the only one who is right, and worshipers of other religions are blind or stupid. No, he respects the fact that other views and believes are no lesser than his own. I admire the way he manage this discussion.
The first part is also the part where he shares a lot of his thoughts about religions, universe and his most fundamental believes. It is impressive how clearly he is able to show his point to the reader.
I would give straight 5 stars for the first part of the book.

The second part is much less interesting. In this part Paine is presenting every book from the Bible and proves step by step why each of those book is false. It is not so interesting, because he was writing that at the times when people (and catholic church) were interpreting Bible literally. It is not true today, so Paine's evidence are simply boring.
Besides, this part is about proving Bible to be false which is far less innovative than creating your own religion.
So, for the second part of the book I would give like 2 stars, no more than that.
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Quotes Kamituel Liked

Thomas Paine
“I have always strenuously supported the right of every man to his own opinion, however different that opinion might be to mine. He who denies to another this right, makes a slave of himself to his present opinion, because he precludes himself the right of changing it.”
Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

Thomas Paine
“Infidelity does not consist in believing, or in disbelieving; it consists in professing to believe what he does not believe.”
Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason

Thomas Paine
“My own mind is my own church.”
Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason


Comments (showing 1-5 of 5) (5 new)

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message 1: by Ewa (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ewa It's the "moderate Christians", people who still cannot decide between science and religion that say, that we cannot take the Bible literally. Talk to any catholic bishop, priest or even a member of Mormon church, and they will tell you that the Bible is the word of God and should be taken literally.


Kamituel Well, I think you're not entirely right. There are some Christians who are interpreting Bibile literally - ex. Evangelicals. Catholics, on the other hand, are not. That is exactly why Catholic Church is not opposed evolution theory while Evangelical Church is strictly opposed.

So, general rule is that Evangelical Church takes every word of the Bible as it is and as it is understood today, while Catholic Church is interpreting Bible in some historical context, taking into the account the fact, that at the time Bible was written, and in languages it was written in (hebrew, aramaic, ...) some words meant something different that when translated literally.


message 3: by Ewa (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ewa I agree with you, I really do, but I must say, that in my country Catholics would get really offended if I told them that they shouldn't take the Bible literally. :/ And from what I understand the church itself doesn't really agree with the evolution.

It just irritates me, when people pick and choose what in the Bible is real and what not. That's why I really like the second part of "The Age of Reason"... even if it can get boring sometimes... :)


Kamituel You're right, Catholic Church is not entirely ok with evolution theory. To be precise - evolution is a somewhat complex theory. It states that species are evolving, and that this evolution can be explained by concepts of natural selection, mutation etc. And Church is, in general, not opposed to this part.

But evolution stands also that random changes are the source of everything that exists, which is contrary to theological concepts. Well, God cannot be random, right?

At least that's how I understand this issue ;)

In my country on the other hand, vast majority of Catholics and Catholic Church itself are reading Bible as a story based on some historical facts, but also as a parable, which is good I guess.
Maybe that's why second part of 'Age of Reason' seemed boring to me ;)


message 5: by Ewa (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ewa Wow... You are so lucky to live amongst those who are more open-minded and do not think that evolution is a lie created by Satan! :) Maybe it's the reason that you are so calm about it and I get really worked up while reading the second part of this book... :)


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