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Heavens on earth : the scientific search for the afterlife, immortality, and utopia

Author: Michael Shermer
Publisher: New York, New York : Henry Holt and Company, 2018. ©2018
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : First editionView all editions and formats
Summary:
"In his most ambitious work yet, Shermer sets out to discover what drives humans' belief in life after death, focusing on recent scientific attempts to achieve immortality by radical life extentionists, extropians, transhumanists, cryonicists, and mind-uploaders, along with utopians who have attempted to create heaven on earth. For millennia, religions have concocted numerous manifestations of heaven and the  Read more...
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Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Shermer, Michael.
Heavens on earth.
New York : Henry Holt and Co., 2018
(DLC) 2017043333
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Michael Shermer
ISBN: 9781627798570 1627798579 9781472140616 1472140613
OCLC Number: 1003489368
Description: xii, 305 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Contents: Prologue : Memento mori --
Part I. Varieties of mortal experiences and immortal quests. A lofty thought : imagining mortality ; What dreams may come : imagining immortality ; Heavens above : the afterlives of the monotheisms --
Part II. The scientific search for immortality. Heavens within : the afterlives of the spiritual seekers ; Evidence for the afterlife : near death experiences and reincarnation ; Evidence for the afterlife : anomalous psychological experiences and talking to the dead ; Soul stuff : identity, replication, and resurrection ; Afterlife for atheists : can science defeat death? --
Part III. All our yesterdays and tomorrows. All our yesterdays : progress, decline, and the pull of pessimism ; All our tomorrows : utopias and dystopias in fiction and in fact --
Part IV. Mortality and meaning. Why we die : the mortal individual and the immortal species ; Imagine there's no heaven : finding meaning in a meaningless universe.
Responsibility: Michael Shermer.

Abstract:

"In his most ambitious work yet, Shermer sets out to discover what drives humans' belief in life after death, focusing on recent scientific attempts to achieve immortality by radical life extentionists, extropians, transhumanists, cryonicists, and mind-uploaders, along with utopians who have attempted to create heaven on earth. For millennia, religions have concocted numerous manifestations of heaven and the afterlife, the place where souls go after the death of the physical body. Religious leaders have toiled to make sense of this place that a surprising 74% of Americans believe exists, but from which no one has ever returned to report what it is really like. Heavens on Earth concludes with an uplifting paean to purpose and progress and what we can do in the here-and-now, whether or not there is a hereafter"--

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