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The Abraham Dilemma
A divine delusion
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Main description:

What is a religious or spiritual delusion? What does religious delusion reveal about the difference between good and bad spirituality? What is the connection between religious delusion and moral failure? Or between religious delusion and religious terrorism? Or religious delusion and despair?

The Abraham Dilemma: A Divine Delusion is the first book written by a philosopher on the topic of religious delusion - on the disorder's causes, contents, consequences, diagnosis and treatment. The book argues that we cannot understand a religious delusion without appreciating three facts. One is that religiosity or spirituality is a part of human nature, whether it takes theistic or non-theistic forms. Another is that religious delusion is something to which we are all vulnerable.
The third is that the delusion is not best understood by reducing it to brain chemistry, or by insisting that it is empirically false. It is best understood by examining its harmful personal and moral consequences - consequences that nearly unfolded when the biblical patriarch Abraham prepared to sacrifice
his son Isaac in response to a command, he thought, from God.

The book presents a fascinating and profound exploration of a phenomenon as old as mankind itself.


ISBN-13: 9780198728658
Publisher: Oxford University Press (OUP Oxford)
Publication date: August, 2015
Pages: 192
Weight: 454g
Availability: Available
Subcategories: Psychiatry, Psychology
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Average Rating 

As Abraham raises his arm to slay Isaac, is he a faithful servant of God or someone under the sway of a powerful delusion? Graham, a philosophy professor at Georgia State, uses the disquieting biblical story as a touchstone in this elegant consideration of the line between healthy and unhealthy forms of religiosity. I think the book is an excellent addition to the literature of delusions, and also psychiatry and spirituality. I highly recommend it.