Sam Harris: The End Of Faith

841 words - 3 pages

As a result of our global society being manipulated by ancient doctrines Sam Harris argues in The End of Faith: Religion, Terror and the Future of Reason the ultimate thesis: religion is the basis for all of human conflict. Because faith bypasses all evidence, Harris feels “we are building a civilization of ignorance” and another direction should be taken lest we desire to meet our doom. It is incredible the amount of detail Harris delves into. Each reference to religion, he notes their various foibles and incorporates well-reasoned arguments, including others, that support his view. Though there are flaws, The End of Faith is a worthy read that explores the idiosyncrasies of all facets of religion.
On a few occasions it seems as if Harris veers off of his intended path and rambles on about extraneous ideas, concepts, or current states that seem to have little to no relevance to the matter presented. In our current state of affairs we have a list of infractions that are dubbed as “victimless crimes.” Crimes such as these bring no significant harm to anybody yet people are still being penalized. According to Harris, “the idea of a victimless crime is nothing more than a judicial reprise of the Christian notion of sin.” (Harris 159) The influence of faith on our laws continues further as Harris goes into detail regarding drugs and alcohol. Any psychotropic drug which has been attributed to, by its users, as having spiritual or religious significance is prohibited. In this instance, Harris proposes a reductio ad absurdum which, in a nutshell, states how something as harmful as alcohol is legal while “ as a drug, marijuana is nearly unique in having several medical applications and no known lethal dosage,” (Harris 161) but is considered a schedule one controlled substance. The amount of detail which Harris transmits can be overwhelming and on some instances leaves the readers searching for the purpose of the hubbub. “To convey the relentless with which unbelievers are vilified in the Koran, I provide a long compilation of quotations below...” Not only is this compilation tedious, it is repetitious and the point could have been made with a few of the passages. Besides the infrequent surfacing of extraneous details, Harris does excellently with his choice of language and style.
Harris’ no nonsense approach toward religion allows for his blatant attacks without presenting an indication of fear to offend the masses. With this style, there is no censorship or delay to what Harris is trying to articulate. He makes...

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