Perhaps human beings are animals, driven by the will to survive and reproduce, perhaps responsibility is a useful fiction and religion is the opium of the masses. Perhaps death is the end, life is ultimately meaningless, brutish and short. Perhaps man is the measure of all things and beauty, truth and justice are open to interpretation. Or, perhaps not.
God matters. The choice over whether and what to believe is inescapable because it determines how we live our lives. Nothing matters more.
Here is a book that encourages and enables students and general readers to ask fundamental questions about the nature and meaning of human life in an open, engaging but academically rigorous way. Centuries of scholarship in the Philosophy of Religion, from Jewish and Muslim as well as Christian traditions, are put in context and critically evaluated.
Examples from art, film, and literature show the contemporary relevance of debates which have raged throughout human history. www.what-matters.org provides recommendations for further reading, a rich anthology of primary texts, questions for discussion and related activities.
Peter Vardy was Vice-Principal of Heythrop College, University of London, from 1999-2011.
He lectures extensively to teachers and students around the world and his bestselling books are a fixture on reading lists, known for being accessible and entertaining without oversimplifying complex material.
'a book for intelligent students who want to expand what they know of belief and unbelief. Whether they are believers or not they will find after reading God Matters that they have sounder reasons for their position and a lot more questions.'
"Another inspirational book from team Vardy and my A Level course on a plate... a breath of fresh air... a unique contribution to what has latterly been a very boring bookshelf... Enjoy, I certainly did!"
"I loved this book. Not sure if a review can express how much I enjoyed it."
'God Matters' is an excellent and thoroughly readable updated discussion of the arguments concerning the existence of God and the challenges to that belief. Abrahamic religious perspectives and relevant inputs from such authors as C.S.Lewis, Iris Murdoch and Dostoyevsky also enrich the debates. I would have really enjoyed reading such a work when I was an undergraduate and I'm sure it will be thoroughly appreciated by both sixth formers and undergraduate students of this subject area. Well done the Vardys once again!
"A must-read for Year 12 and 13 Philosophy of Religion students and their teachers, which will also be of great value for Undergraduate students..."
"To provide breadth, depth, rigour and accessibility all in one introductory text is quite an achievement, but it is one that Peter and Charlotte Vardy have managed. It really is an excellent read!"
"Once again Peter and Charlotte Vardy have done what so many teachers find so difficult - communicated complex philosophical and theological ideas with clarity, ease and a good deal of humour."
"It certainly made me think and I recommend this book to those people that are seeking a better understanding of the mysteries of life".
"Exactly what I was hoping to find for my students to encourage and stimulate learning in this intellectually rigorous and demanding subject."
"The Vardys are gifted communicators and many have benefited from their excellent conferences. Now they have transferred their high standard of scholarship into this book and, as ever, all ideas are presented with clarity and precision. In a sea of introductory books, this is a very welcome development... 'God Matters' will prove to be the 'go to' book for both the seasoned teacher and the enquiring young philosopher. "
This book is the embodiment of the authors; engaging and intellectually stimulating!"
"A perfect springboard from which to launch an essential journey to contemplate truth."