- Taschenbuch: 107 Seiten
- Verlag: Canongate Books Ltd.; Auflage: Main (24. April 2009)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 1847674275
- ISBN-13: 978-1847674272
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 11,1 x 0,9 x 17,8 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 10.560 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
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Sum: Forty Tales from the Afterlives (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 24. April 2009
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Witty, bright, sharp and unexpected . . . as surprising a book as I've read for years. Every story is a new Heaven. -- Brian Eno A very well-written, very funny and very thought-provoking book that makes you realize that when it comes to the afterlife, most religions suffer from an acute shortage of imagination. Sum immediately made me think of several more alternative afterlives * * Yuval Noah Harari * * SUM is terrific. It's such a good idea that I was grinding my teeth all the way through wishing I'd thought of it first. The inventiveness, the clarity and wit of the prose, the calm air of moral understanding that pervades the whole thing, add up to something completely original. I hope Sum will be the great big hit it deserves to be. -- Philip Pullman Brilliantly realised, blazingly original, Sum isn't so much about the next life as this one. Eagleman's stories - parables? - a chilly reminder of our foibles and delusions. -- Colin Waters * * Sunday Herald * * 40 intriguing tales describing different heavenly scenarios ... and all formidably imagined ... Readers may discover much to appreciate - not least the lives they are living now, still so much better than some nightmares in these pages ... quirky, occasionally unsettling ... never short of new new ideas, all of them rolled out with style. -- Nicholas Tucker * * Independent * * This delightful, thought-provoking little collection belongs to that category of strange, unclassifiable books that will haunt the reader long after the last page has been turned. It is full of tangential insights into the human condition and poetic thought experiments ... full of touching moments and glorious wit of the sort one only hopes will be incopious supply on the other side. * * The New York Times * * This stunningly original book is little more than 100 pages long. You can get through it in an hour, but you'd be mad to hurry, and you will certainly want to return to it many times ... Sum has the unaccountable, jaw-dropping quality of genius. It seems exquisitely adapted to fill the contemporary longing for a kind of secular holy book. -- Geoff Dyer * * Observer * * It does what it says in the title - satirical, playful, troubling, inventive, thought provoking and often funny takes on possible afterlives. A complete one off. I've been buying it and giving to friends and family. Everyone is delighted. Keep by the bed and feed yourself one or two before turning out the light. -- Andrew Greig * * Sunday Herald * * SUM is an imaginative and provocative book that gives new perspectives on how to view ourselves and our place in the world. * * Alan Lightman, author of EINSTEIN'S DREAM * * I suppose there could be people who dislike Canongate's latest find ... those, dare one say it, without poetry in their souls. For the rest - the millions who even in a post-religious, secular society find themselves at unexpected moments wondering who or what God is, if he's not a little old man sitting on a cloud. -- Mary Crockett * * Scotsman * * This is as much an object of desire as an actual book ... elegant, surreal and philosophically questioning, each story from neuroscientist Eagleman offers an inventive, thought-provoking blend of science and romance ... sly wit, ingenuity and oddly acute insight into the vagaries of the human condition. -- Tina Jackson * * Metro * * The most thought provoking stocking filler you could hope to find: a slender volume of bite size vignettes pondering what happens after we die. * * Scotsman * * Clever, memorable stuff. -- Lottie Moggach * * The London Paper * * Charming, a bit whimsical, and thought-provoking. -- Mark Sarvas A clever book. -- Robert Hanks * * Daily Telegraph * *
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
David Eagleman, PHD, is a neuroscientist at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas where his research laboratory is developing a reputation for doing some of the most unusual experiments in contemporary neuroscience. He has had essays published in all manner of journals including Nature and Science. He also lectures widely and continues to be invited to speak at universities all around the world.
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Aber Gott kommt nicht nur in einer Gestalt vor: Mal ist er eine Göttin, mal ist er all die vielen Götter, die von ihren Anhängern verlassen wurden, mal eine Mikrobe, mal ein technischer Gestalter. Auf jeden Fall ist es immer originell und tiefsinnig: Noch nie bin ich angeregt worden, mich mit dieser Problematik so intensiv zu befassen.
Warnung: Gläubige - gleich welcher Religion - werden bei der Lektüre gute Aussichten haben, sich von der Richtigkeit der Beschreibung des Jenseits noch während des Lesens zu überzeugen, da sie wahrscheinlich einem Herzinfarkt erliegen werden ob der Ruchlosigkeit des Autors in Bezug auf Gott, dem er statt Bewunderung oft nur tiefes Mitgefühl entgegen bringt.
Ich habe das Buch als Kindle Ausgabe gekauft, weil Incognito und The Brain großartig sind.
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It's difficult to write about this without giving too much away; if you want take the stories at their freshest, stop reading my review and read the book now. Come back when you've finished (in an hour or two) to compare your thoughts with mine.
In many of the chapters we can't communicate with God, or the creator(s), because there are such differences of scale or understanding. "Do you think it would have any meaning at all if you displayed one of your Shakespearean plays to a bacterium? Of course not. Meaning varies with spatial scale. So we have concluded that communicating with her is not impossible, but it is pointless." (P 16). Also: "She is the elephant described by the blind men; all partial descriptions with no understanding of the whole." (P 99)
This theme resonates with me; I first saw a form of this idea on the original Cosmos with Carl Sagan. Because God is beyond us we can't perfectly conceive of him (Sagan was talking about aliens not God). Consider a two dimensional universe; one with length and width but no height - thinner than a flattest, thinnest paper. Beings in this universe would develop math and philosophy based on their experiences. Then suppose a cube appears over the universe casting a varying shaped shadow as it revolves above this two dimensional universe. The two dimensional beings could see the shadow shape change but could not conceive of a three dimensional cube. We can only conceive of those things which meet our scale.
Other stories show the creator(s) were imperfect and even heaven is imperfect. "He is in the position of an amateur magician who performs for small children and suddenly has to play to skeptical adults." (P 93). Even then all is not lost: "He has recently faced his limitations, and this has brought Him closer to us." (P 94)
Still another recurring theme considers our physical, atomic structure of bacterium, molecules, atoms and quarks. "But it turns out your thousand trillion trillion atoms were not an accidental collection; each was labeled as composing you and continues to be so wherever it goes. So you're not gone, your'e simply taking on different forms." (P106).
My favorite story was the last: Reversal where we live our lives backward "The pleasures of a lifetime of intercourse are relived, culminating in kissed instead of sleep." (P109)
The most disturbing story was chapter four: Descent of Species. When given a chance to go back to earth as anything you want, pick wisely.
David Eagleman is a neuroscientist, not a theologian or a philosopher. This book is not for conservative religious, regardless of faith. But if you would like a small diversion to consider what might be ahead of us.
In this little book, neuroscientist/writer David Eagleman imagines 40 possibilities of what the afterlife might be like. For example, you might arrive at the hereafter and discover that the good are going to Hell and the bad to Heaven, because, sometime way way way back when, God lost control and the afterlife was given over to committees.
Or, let's say, God is a woman whose heaven treats everyone as equals. So why is she weeping? Well, the communists are ticked off because they only achieved their perfect society with the help of a God they don't believe in and the meritocrats are ticked off having to live with pinkos and the liberals are grousing about having no downtrodden to help and the conservatives no penniless to disparage and it turns out that the only thing everyone, including God, can agree on is that this is Hell.
Or maybe you've reached the hereafter after a long and arduous life, only to make the happy discovery that you get to choose who you'll get to be in the next life. You decide what you want for next time is a simple life. So you choose to come back as a horse, never stopping to think that next time you reach the afterlife and get to choose again, your horse brain won't have the smarts to choose being a human.
None of the above quite the way you'd like to envision it? That's okay. Eagleman has 37 more for your reading pleasure.