Meditations for the Humanist Ethics for a Secular Age

Meditations for the Humanist Ethics for a Secular Age

3.86 (943 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 2 business days
When will my order arrive?


"Magnanimity is in short supply," writes A. C. Grayling is this wonderfully incisive book, "but it is the main ingredient in everything that makes the world a better place" And indeed Meditations for the Humanist: Ethics for a Secular Age is itself a generous, insightful, wide-ranging, magnanimous inquiry into the philosophical and ethical questions that bear most strongly on the human condition. Containing nearly fifty linked commentaries on topics ranging from love, lying, perseverance, revenge, racism, religion, history, loyalty, health, and leisure, Meditations for the Humanist does not offer definitive statements but rather prompts to reflection. These brief essays serve as springboards to the kind of thoughtful examination without which, as Socrates famously claimed, life is not worth living. As Graying notes in his introduction, "It is not necessary to arrive at polished theories on all these subjects, but it is necessary to give them at least a modicum of thought if one's life is to have some degree of shape and direction." The book is divided into three sections-Virtues and Attributes, Foes and Fallacies, and Amenities and Goods-and within these sections essays are grouped into related clusters. But each piece can be read alone and each is characterized by brevity, wit, and a liveliness of mind that recalls the best of Montaigne and Samuel Johnson. Grayling's own perspective on these subjects is broadened and deepened by liberal quotations from Sophocles and Shakespeare to Byron, Twain, Proust, Simone de Beauvoir, Martin Luther King, Jr., and many others. For those wishing to explore ethical issues outside the framework of organized religious belief, Meditations for the Humanist offers an inviting map to the country of philosophical more

Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • 134.62 x 198.12 x 10.16mm | 158.76g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0195168909
  • 9780195168907
  • 107,140

Review quote

"In entries recalling W.V.O. Quine's famed Quiddities, eminent University of London philosopher Grayling, also a Guardian columnist, mediates on 'Hope'; 'Betrayal'; 'Intemperance'; 'Blasphemy'; 'Capitalism'; 'Poverty'; 'Racism'; 'Nationalism' and another 40-odd abstract terms we experience in a very real way every day."show more

About Grayling

A. C. Grayling teaches philosophy at the University of London. He writes a weekly column "The Last Word" for The Guardian and is a frequent contributor to The New York Times Book Review, Financial Times, and Lingua Franca. The author of a biography of William Hazlitt and several introductions to philosophy, Mr. Grayling lives in more

Rating details

943 ratings
3.86 out of 5 stars
5 28% (263)
4 41% (391)
3 22% (211)
2 6% (59)
1 2% (19)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X