Friday, March 16, 2012

Alain de Botton: Religion for Atheists

The 500-seat Kanbar Hall at the JCC was near capacity for this appearance by author Alain de Botton, who gave a 45-minute talk covering topics in his new book, Religion for Atheists. He thinks the central doctrines of religion are "implausible," yet he finds religion's art & stories "charming." Secular culture falls short in education, guiding us through life & building community. We can look to religion to see how to do better. Mr. de Botton freely admits to approaching religions cafeteria style, just picking out the "best bits" to make up his meal. When someone asked him where one goes to find other like-minded atheists to put these ideas into practice, he replied, "Start your own religion."

Mr. de Botton, with his erudite British accent, understated wit & youthful cheeriness, talks exactly like the voice I hear when I read his books. He told us that earlier in the day his flight here from Kansas got hopelessly delayed, so he chartered a plane along with 2 other guys going to Silicon Valley. Because this flight cost thousands, he urged us to buy the book.

Thursday, Mar 15
Starts at: 8:00 pm
Jewish Community Center of San Francisco

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