remise of the book is that moral propensities and principles are the end-result of forces of culture, laws of nature, and the contingencies of history (Shermer, 18). The author presents a contention that believers do not need to be alienated. Since the general acceptance for the existence of God makes it acceptable for one to believe that God created and laws of nature to inculcate within human beings a moral sense. Furthermore, He also inculcated moral principles within human cultures. Without religion, it would be hard to achieve morality. This remains the basic premise from which the true definition of religion can be developed, and it serves as the principal target of Shermer in his book. At the fundamental of Shermer’s argument regarding the evolution of morality, is the denotation and actual sense of religion. Shermer describes religion as a social institution that progressed as a fundamental mechanism of human philosophy (Shermer 7). The importance of the origin of religion was to create and promote myths with a view of encouraging cooperation and altruism. Furthermore, religion encompasses the discouragement of competitiveness and selfishness. Thus, the real meaning of religion is the revelation of the level of obligation for members of the community to unite and return goodness.
Shermer poses the question; can individuals lead moral lives in the absence of recourse to a transcendent being that might or might not exist? In his query, he recognize the immediate and historic function of religious practice in inculcating moral values. He argues that the true meaning of religion enable one to develop moral character while observing ethical way of life. The author creates the most precise definition of religion. He argues that it is important to ask the following question: can individuals construct an ethical system in the absence of religion? The answer the Shermer proposes appears to be affirmative on both counts. He does not belittle or disregard human ...Show more