For people who no longer find faith, authority, and tradition convincing, there are many questions of what goes into thoughtful living. Atheist Richard Carrier’s Sense and Goodness without God offers a framework for evidence-based living and encouragement to develop wisdom for quality living beyond faith.


Life beyond faith presents social challenges and the need to make decisions about values that give our lives meaning. Carrier writes, “It is absolutely crucial to have a sound and successful philosophy of life,” and he has worked out his own ways of thinking which he calls “Metaphysical Naturalism.” Carrier explains that Metaphysical Naturalism “is essentially an explanation of everything without recourse to anything supernatural, a view that takes reason and science seriously, and expects nothing from you that you cannot judge for yourself.”

As selling points, Carrier adds, “The title of this book is ‘Sense and Goodness without God,’ because Metaphysical Naturalism is full of sense, and encourages nothing but good. Reason and acute thinking are its very bedrock, and the love of wisdom is its main driving force. To be wise and practical is our motto. And this worldview provides adequate, if not strong reasons to devote yourself and your life to high moral ideals, to compassion and integrity in the pursuit of happiness…It stands on its own terms, on reason and fact…The adoption of Metaphysical Naturalism will benefit the survival of any society…” and “is tailor-made for advancing human survival and welfare.”

Although some Humanists might differ with Carrier on details of his personal ways of thinking, Humanists share the naturalistic framework of testing claims with reasons, scientific evidence, and experience and share the desire to live wisely.

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