2 out of 4 stars
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Religion is thought, by many people, to advocate the opposite of what science advocates. The two are thought to be antagonizing forces. Religious people are seen as fools to scientists, and scientists seen as fools to religious people. However, The Biblical Clock, by Daniel Friedmann and Dania Sheldon, tries to explore the similarities between the two, and in so doing reconcile the differences between the two.
The Biblical Clock is set in different times and follows the lives and works of various scholars. Most of these were religious scholars who tried to apply scientific thinking and reasoning to religious questions. Some of them were religious people who were persecuted and/or killed for their faith. Isaac Ben Samuel, for instance, was one such religious person. He was only spared by good luck as other Jews were killed by the Mamluks. He, however, continued with his scholarly work even in captivity. The book narrates some of these achievements by scholars and how they tie down to religion. It also attempts to predict the future. For example, how and when the world will end.
I love the idea behind the book. It is actually the main reason why I decided to read it. I have read many such books before mainly because 'Religion vs Science' is a fascinating topic to me. It is interesting when authors claim to have 'patched up' the rift behind religion and science. However, I did not feel that this book did justice to the topic. I felt that it raised more questions in me than the ones it answered... This was mainly because the examples given were those I could not relate easily with. It was based more on Jewish religion (Judaism) than Christianity.
It isn't a conventional novel (or a novel, for that matter) but the authors tried to tell a couple of stories. These were good stories but still not relatable, and sometimes even undecipherable. This, again, is because of their overbearing on the Jewish culture. I can only claim to have enjoyed one of them. I was also not dazzled as I had expected to be. I had expected to receive information and facts that would wow me and help me connect religion and science together but I was sadly disappointed.
In all honesty, I can not claim to have enjoyed reading this book. I feel like it was a very good idea but I was not its target audience, who would be readers that are well knowledgeable in the Judaism religion and culture. This book would appeal to them more. However, I found no grammatical errors in the book leading me to the conclusion that it was professionally edited. For these reasons, I have to rate it 2 out of 4 stars. It should, however, be enjoyed by religious scholars especially those familiar with both Christianity and Judaism. Other audiences might not appreciate it as much.
The Biblical Clock
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