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Above Us Only Sky [Paperback]

By Don Cupitt (Author)
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Item Number 213069  
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Item description for Above Us Only Sky by Don Cupitt...

Don Cupitt believes that a new and truly global religious consciousness has been quietly easing itself in around the world. It does not need any visible organization and does not make any non-rational doctrinal claims. It is the religion of life a secular, purely this-worldly, and radically-democratic affirmation of ordinary life. Where prescientific ages saw Heaven, he says, we see only sky. We have given up belief in a supernatural world, and we have felt compelled to break with the received ecclesiastical form of Christianity. But the Christian spirit of critical thinking, of systematic self-criticism and perpetual reform, has spread around the whole world in modern science, technology, critical history, and liberal democracy. In Above Us Only Sky, in 27 brief slogans, he presents a systematic theology of this religion of ordinary life, setting it against its philosophical background, its spirituality and its relation to other faiths. It is, he says, the legacy and the long-awaited fulfillment of Christianity.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Polebridge Press
Pages   134
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 6.5" Height: 9.25"
Weight:   0.45 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Nov 11, 2008
Publisher   Polebridge Press
Edition  New  
ISBN  1598150111  
ISBN13  9781598150117  

Availability  129 units.
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More About Don Cupitt

Don Cupitt Don Cupitt was born in 1934 in Lancashire, England, and educated at Charterhouse, Trinity Hall Cambridge, and Westcott House Cambridge. He studied, successively, Natural Sciences, Theology and the Philosophy of Religion. In 1959 he was ordained deacon in the Church of England, becoming a priest in 1960. In the early 1990s he stopped officiating at public worship, and in 2008 he finally ceased to be a communicant member of the church.

After short periods as a curate in the North of England, and as Vice-Principal of Westcott House, Cupitt was elected to a fellowship and appointed Dean at Emmanuel College late in 1965. Since then he has remained at the College. In 1968 he was appointed to a University teaching post in the Philosophy of Religion, a job in which he continued until his retirement for health reasons in 1996. At that time he proceeded to a Life Fellowship at Emmanuel College, which remains his base today. He is married, with three children who all now live and work in London, and five grandchildren.

Don Cupitt's books began to appear in the early 1970s, without attracting much public attention. He first provoked hostile notice by his participation in the symposium The Myth of God Incarnate (1977), and then became nationally known for his media work — especially the three BBC Television projects Open to Question (1973), Who was Jesus? (1977), and The Sea of Faith (1984).

Cupitt's notoriety peaked in the these years of the early 1980s, his most important book of that period being Taking Leave of God (1980), which shut down his career and made him in the eyes of the Press an atheist and perhaps ‘the most radical theologian in the world’. He survived, partly because the then Archbishop of Canterbury and the then Master of Emmanuel defended his right to put forward his views. Since that time he has devoted his energies to developing his ideas in a long line of books.

In his writing, and in the various societies he has tried to foster, Don Cupitt attempts to develop new thinking for a new epoch: a new philosophy, a new ethics, and a new religious thought. His thinking develops continuously and is not easy to summarize, but the best introduction to it has been given by the Australian Nigel Leaves in his recent two-volume study. The Sea of Faith TV series can be sampled on YouTube, and obtained on DVD from Sea of Faith UK; and the book is still in print. It is reasonably accessible to beginners in philosophy and theology. Readers with more time and energy should simply read Cupitt’s recent books in the order in which they were written — beginning with Impossible Loves (2007). A short crib to his ideas is provided by Turns of Phrase, 2011.

Don Cupitt currently resides in Cambridge. Don Cupitt was born in 1934 and has an academic affiliation as follows - formerly of Emmanuel College, Cambridge.

Don Cupitt has published or released items in the following series...
  1. MasterMind
  2. scm classics

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology

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Reviews - What do customers think about Above Us Only Sky?

Quick to state his point of view with but little explanation as to why he thinks as he does.  Jun 25, 2009
I would call him quite liberal in his theology. This is not the first book one should read who is begining to question the evangelical teachings of his childhood where reciting creeds is important, accepting the bible as inerrant and beliving that God intervenes in human activities. First they should read books by Marcus Borg such as "The Heart of Christianity" or John Shelby's books. His most recent one is: "Jesus for the Non-Religious". Then topping it off with the recent book: "When Faith Meets Reason" edited by Charles Hedrick. Here 13 Religion scholars relfect on their spiritual journey. It is a quick and easy read. Then Don Cupitt.
The merger of religion and ordinary life  Feb 9, 2009
Since no reviews have been posted yet, I want to provide at least a short comment. Don Cupitt was known in his earlier career as the "atheist (Anglican) priest." Describing him as an atheist is not particularly helpful but he has, as his probably most famous book says, "taken leave" of God. Cupitt is "post-Christian" but readily admits his lingering affection for much of the Christian tradition and it shapes all that he writes. Perhaps less acknowledged is the importance of his clerical background, as his writing also has significant pastoral component. His interest is more than academic for Cupitt is always seeking to provide practical guidance to life in the post-modern world.

"Above Us Only Sky" is a concise summation of Cupitt's writings and thought. He describes how "the religion of ordinary life" is spontaneously taking hold throughout the world as the notion of a god "out there" becomes alien to more and more people. Religion now is to help us to accept that life is contingent, linear, and finite. In response, then, we recognize that life is now "solar", i.e. we live like the sun in a continuous process of "burning out." The book conveys a real sense of Cupitt's comfort both with how his philosophy has developed and with this latter stage of his life (he turns 75 this year). I found this book to be remarkably positive and upbeat as well as an insightful and helpful guide to life "after god." Highly recommended.

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