Some Mistakes of Moses
by Robert G. Ingersoll
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Some Mistakes of Moses / 978-1-58509-060-0
It is difficult to remember that Robert Ingersoll wrote this eloquent argument over a hundred years ago; his impassioned arguments seem so relevant today that it's hard to believe how little has changed since then. Within his logical and cold commentary of the contradictions and problems within the Pentateuch, Ingersoll also sets forth the arguments that:
* the clergy is held perpetually hostage to the traditions and beliefs of the past, for it is always safer to quote a dead predecessor than to express a new - and potentially unwelcome and unorthodox - opinion for oneself.
* the politicians should be allowed to privately believe what they will, and should not be forced - as an informal religious test - to pander to every religion at once, in a contradictory political dance that reveals only a dearth of real sincerity.
* the teachers may feel pressured not to divulge facts and realities that might contradict "Genesis geology", and may feel pressured to hype up possibilities - regardless of likelihood - that miracles and science may co-exist harmoniously.
When, awhile back, I read "Why I Am Not a Christian and Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects" by Bertrand Russell, I was struck by the eloquence and clarity of thought, such as when Russell pointed out reasonably that one's religion can often be just as much a function of where one is born as well as one's personal choices. I was surprised to see that Ingersoll's excellent book makes many of the same points, with his own style. Somehow, the measure of distance between "then" and "now" bring his points even closer to home.
~ Ana Mardoll
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