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March 08 , 2008

This Strange Eventful History: A Philosophy of Meaning


All of us must seek at a personal and a general level for a philosophy of meaning in life, “this strange eventful history,” to borrow a descriptive phrase for our existence from Shakespeare. A sense of meaning is essential for peace of mind, yet meaning may appear elusive in our present-day divided world.

This book sets out to survey our options concisely, drawing on philosophy, religion, science and art, across the gamut from classical philosophers to atheists, mystics, sensualists, agnostics, primatologists, neuroscientists, Unifaith believers, Interfaith, Multifaith and lastly Transfaith, to seek a religious attitude freed from myth and magic. A new concept of intelligent design is examined, linked with Panspermia, independent of the concept of anthropomorphic creation.

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Charlotte Tremayne is an independent eighteenth century woman, a clandestine novelist, creator of a famous picaresque hero. She has little sympathy for the defeated Jacobites who languish in her uncle’s cells after Culloden, but her interest is piqued by tales of a prisoner who claims to be from the fifteenth century. His far-fetched story might…

Each chapter draws on the opinions of two (or more) prominent inter-related thinkers, including Sartre, Foucault, and Frankl, Freud and Richard Dawkins, Carl Jung and Mircea Eliade, the Greeks and the Buddha, Van Gogh and Gauguin, and many others, to help us form an opinion, often provocatively, with no holds barred! The stimulating inter-relationship between these stars steers us on a path towards a viewpoint of Cosmic Compassionate Plurality.

The Existentialist philosophers cautioned that life is essentially meaningless — but they allowed that we may choose ourselves. Certainly, our choices are many and various in this current era. Often, however, we bemoan the lack of time to read and research those possibilities. This book sets out to provide the needed background material.

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