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Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Rabbi Explains "Why Faith Matters"

"I believe that the book makes a very compelling case that religion is not responsible for war, and that science is compatible with religion," Rabbi David Wolpe, a rising leader in Conservative Judaism, says in an interview in the Forward about his upcoming new book, Why Faith Matters. "The other way it enters the dialogue is by refocusing people on the real content of religion. Eighty-five to 90 percent of religion is not about abstract ideas; it’s about the way people live their lives, and when people are in trouble, or rejoicing or need community, or are sick, or have died, suddenly religion steps in as that which supports and cares for them."
Wolpe says he wrote the book—a defense of faith—to counter the anti-religion arguments of the "new atheists" and to argue for religion's value in the modern world. He wants to promote the idea, he says, that you can "be intellectually sophisticated and morally sensitive and still be religious." —Heather Wax