Atheist Creates 'Secular Bible'

AC Grayling used work of philosophers to create a guidebook
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 12, 2011 2:43 PM CDT
Atheist Creates 'Secular Bible'
AC Grayling's The Good Book is an attempt to create a kind of Bible for atheists.    (Publisher)

(Newser) – What would the Bible look like without all that God stuff in it? That's the question AC Grayling attempted to answer with his newly published The Good Book: A Humanist Bible. Instead of looking to prophets and apostles, Grayling compiled the wisdom of great philosophers and writers, reports CNN. “Humanist ethics didn’t claim to be derived from a deity," he says. "(They) tended to start from a sympathetic understanding of human nature and accept that there’s a responsibility that each individual has to work out the values they live by.”

Divided into chapters and verses and featuring two columns on each page, the 600-page Good Book looks a lot like the Bible. It even starts with a garden scene—though in this case, it's Newton and his apple tree, not Eden. And the book ends with a secular version of the 10 Commandments: "Love well, seek the good in all things, harm no others, think for yourself, take responsibility, respect nature, do your utmost, be informed, be kind, be courageous: at least, sincerely try." The intention, he says, was not to create something that's "part of a quarrel," explaining the book is for everyone—even those who already have a Bible on their shelves. (Also: Another new kind of Bible has been published...)

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