Torn Between two Worlds, by Shawn T Murphy

Discussion in 'Members Lounge' started by KenJ, Dec 7, 2017.

  1. KenJ

    KenJ Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

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    Torn Between two Worlds by Shawn T Murphy – Science and Religion, Volume 1

    I received the book yesterday afternoon and finished it a few hours later. I was surprised about it being only about sixty pages in length and having it considered a complete document. I think it would have been better to have the trilogy as one book with a chapter about how Shawn sees them fitting together or something.

    I found it intercesting and pretty well researched and referenced (and I only found two typos, one more than I had in just the first sentence of my dissertation!), I found nothing that I did not agree with or different from what I believe or understood, and the only thing that I found that “jumped out at me was a statement that Constantine moved the celebration of Christmas from earlier in “December when Jesus was born”. This is nit-picking, but it illustrates the small extent of differing thought between the author's statements and my previous understandings. Here is all that I can add on that subject: Edgar Cayce puts his actual birth in April, Luke's testimony puts the date at August 22, 3BC (which fits Jewish events) and astronomers put it at September 11, 3BC (that fits how the stars and sky looked as described in the Bible), the statement that Jesus was born in early December was new to me as I had never researched when it was actually celebrated back then.

    The book seemed to make various points which, to me, seemed to not combine to create a “picture”, only points and often indistinct lines of connection as if to start a framework to later build-out with some substance or direction that I expected to find, but didn’t. Perhaps the substance of this thin structure is added in the other two, even shorter, books. I am not critical of Shawn’s thoughts, research, intent, honesty, or conclusions – I just found this book to be a gathering of things, with references, that I already knew and was left wondering why it was written (sorry if that sounds harsh). So, it is a good reference for things that I feel everyone should know, it did not add to my understanding nor did it seem to be tied together well despite having a “Conclusion” section. I now realize that I doubt that I would personally publish a book for sale as I would fear a review like the one I have given here.

    If I look at it through the lense of someone who was raised in, and had a long experience of, "religious" indoctrination, then I can see where he might feel that his discoveries merit the creation of a book, I guess that I was lucky in that area.
     
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  2. SeaAndSky

    SeaAndSky Senior Registered

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    Hi Ken,

    Thanks for your review. It sounds like this first book/section has a basic introductory purpose. Hence, I am assuming that the various threads introduced will be woven together in the two subsequent books/sections.

    Cordially,
    S&S
     
  3. KenJ

    KenJ Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

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    I have felt badly since writing that "review" since it was not a real review, just my feelings from reading it. I think that I was just not Shawn's intended reader.

    He states that he was encouraged to write this by friends that expressed their feelings that these things needed to be known, and I certainly agree with that. Perhaps his friends shared an upbringing that was similar to his that restricted thinking outside accepted dogma that would have made this book a breath of fresh air, or at least pointing to doors that are partly open.

    I liked his expansion of the life and times of Origen and the changes to the Christian Bible that resulted from the political decisions during that time and a few centuries later. I wasn't aware of the extent of Origen's writings, I still don't have a clear picture of the time and "places" that were associated with that, I only remember the Council's problem with his teachings and his importance in Africa from previous readings. Shawn does a good job of referencing his work.

    The players that he brings into the science-side of his dichotomous vision include names that are familiar to me, so the information was but a reinforcement of my current understanding - yes I would hope that everyone was aware of all of these actions, thoughts, and ideas as it would make conversation and understandings a lot easier.

    In truth, I have written thoughts similar to several of his chapters and sent those writings to people that I thought might be interested. The response that I got/get is as underwhelming as my original post above - what is the lesson here?

    So, looking at it with expectations setaside, I'd rate the book valuable and evenhanded with information that is really essential for any type of conversation where these two topics intersect. I will leave my original post as an example to myself of needing more than an over-night to respond.
     

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