Allan W. Janssen has written a fascinating book about religion and the search for God and meaning throughout human history.
The first part of the book covers a history of human development and how religion began. It includes a very detailed time line that is very helpful in putting everything into perspective.
The second part of the book has to do with how religious leaders emerged and how religion began to be used for various purposes by these leaders.
I found this book to be well-researched and filled with intriguing information. I believe that any open-minded person with an interest in human culture and religion will find it useful and enlightening, as well as entertaining to read.
This is not a dry textbook but a vital exploration of human beings and our search for a bigger meaning, and what the results of that search have and can lead to.
The Plain Truth about God is a very good overview of the subject of humanity and religion, and I highly recommend it to all open-minded... More > readers.< Less
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Jun 12, 2012
By Dr. Burton L. Mack Those who have studied American popular culture tell us that the Bible has profoundly influenced the way we tell our stories, look for meanings, quest for transformations, imagine our futures, and hope for apocalyptic solutions to our problems. If the Bible is that important to our culture, is it not strange that we have not questioned the reasons why? The list of issues currently under discussion includes the place of creationism in public schools, the role of women in our society, social attitudes towards various sexual orientations, Jewish-Christian relations, theories of white supremacy, patriarchal institutions, the use of natural resources, the definition of family values, understanding violence, how best to relate to other cultures, and what responsibility we have for maintaining human rights around the world. Most of these issues could be discussed without referring to the biblical heritage, but the Bible is always lurking in the background, and positions... More > have been taken on all of them that ultimately appeal to the Bible as the final word. One of the reasons for our silence when confronted with a text from the Bible is that we simply do not know what to make of the Bible and its contents. We do not know what to say in response to those who use the Bible as an authority for their views. When that happens, thinking and reasonable discussion stop. We do not know how to proceed after the Bible has been invoked. We are all complicit in letting an appeal to the Bible count as an argument. I have also been impressed with the authority we grant the Bible when discussing issues of social consequences. Here we are with the Bible on our hands and we do not know how we got it, how it works, and what to make of it in public forum. That is the stimulus for this book.< Less