Taner Edis

The Ghost in the Universe: God in Light of Modern Science

Winner of the Morris D. Forkosch award for “best secular humanist book of 2002.”

“At long last, here is a book on this topic worth reading. . . . Well-versed in Christian and Islamic scripture and thought, Edis is particularly cogent in his discussion of both biological and cosmological evolution. . . . well-written and amply documented . . . should be read by anyone who has even the remotest interest in science, religion, or both.”Choice

Book cover
Is there a God, or a spiritual reality beyond nature? Physicist Taner Edis takes a fresh look at this age-old question, focusing on what we have learned about our world rather than on traditional metaphysical disputes. Emphasizing the results of natural science, Edis presents a universe where complexity, intelligence, and even the sublime heights of religious experience emerge from what is ultimately material and random. Sympathetically criticizing Muslim and New Age perspectives, as well as contemporary Jewish and Christian arguments, he argues that a thoroughgoing naturalism leads to a much better explanation of our world. While making it clear that spiritual views have a genuine intellectual appeal, Edis systematically critiques such arguments, contrasting them with stronger naturalistic explanations. Science is central to this naturalistic picture; modern physics, evolutionary biology, and critical history, as well as contemporary psychology and brain sciences, all cast doubt on any spiritual reality.

Bringing together ideas from many disciplines in a style that remains accessible to nonspecialists, while also interesting to scientists and philosophers, Edis provides an informative, in-depth statement of the case for scientific naturalism as the most accurate and powerful description of our world today.

Taner Edis (Kirksville, MO) is professor of physics at Truman State University.

330 pp • ISBN 1-57392-977-8 • Hard Cover

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