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Sacred Cows: A Lighthearted Look at Belief and Tradition Around the World Paperback – June 10, 2015
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About the Author
- Publisher : Outskirts Press (June 10, 2015)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 212 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1478749962
- ISBN-13 : 978-1478749967
- Item Weight : 6.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 6 x 0.45 x 9 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #431,018 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
"A timely novel highlighting the worth and delicate nature of Nature itself." -Delia Owens Learn more
Top reviews from the United States
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“Sacred Cows" is a lighthearted look at odd religious beliefs around the world. Premiere atheist podcaster of The Thinking Atheist, video producer and author Seth Andrews takes the reader on a provocative journey on absurd religious beliefs. This entertaining 198-page book includes the following nineteen chapters: 1. Once Bitten, 2. Air Supply, 3. Blowing Smoke, 4. Sacred Cows, 5. Are You Naked Under Those Clothes?, 6. Death Becomes You, 7. Die in the Sky, 8. The Fortune Tellers, 9. The Penis Parade, 10. Santa’s Little Helper, 11. Rise Up and Walk!, 12. Free Long Necks for the Ladies, 13. Circus of the Stars, 14. Sabbath Mode, 15. Can You Put Me Up For The Night?, 16. Wag the Dog, 17. The Order, the Doctrine and the Dude, 18. Running with the Devil, and 19. This is the End (Beautiful Friend).
1. A well-written, conversational, brief, witty and entertaining book to read.
2. The fun topic of odd religious beliefs around the world.
3. Great visual format. Loved the cartoon drawings that complement the lighthearted narrative.
4. Andrews makes it perfectly clear that this is a layman tour of odd beliefs and never deviates from it. In short, he makes a promise and keeps it.
5. Andrews engaging and provocative personality shines through the entire book.
6. Interesting facts spruced throughout the book. “…an estimated 125 snake-handling churches take literally the words of Mark 16:18, ‘They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.’”
7. A look at “Papal infallibility” and the three conditions that must be met to be so.
8. A humorous look at Hinduism and an amusing list of animals worshipped around the world.
9. The amusing Batshit Scale applied to Mormon beliefs.
10. One of the oddest chapters, the Church of Euthanasia. “Its slogan: ‘Save the Planet, Kill Yourself.’”
11. A fascinating look at fortune tellers. In reference to Sylvia Browne, “Out of the 115 recorded predictions analyzed by S.I., her success rate came in at...zero.”
12. Some chapters are laugh out loud funny, check out the festival called, “Kanamara Matsuri”.
13. The true story behind Saint Nick and the Krampus poem.
14. A look at the scoundrel that is Peter Popoff. “It seems that Popoff was receiving cues from his bride via a tiny earpiece receiver he’d passed off as a “hearing aid” (why the hell would a faith healer need a hearing aid?), and when Randi went public with the information, Peter Popoff spiraled from protest to admission to humiliation to bankruptcy within the course of a year.”
15. Amusing look at body modifiers. “Also in the modify-by-disk department, the Kayan women of Burma have a thing about the neck.”
16. Scientology’s E-Meter. “In fact, according to ex-Scientologist Marc Headley, author of the book “Blown for Good: Behind the Iron Curtain of Scientology,” the nifty Mark VIII Super Quantum E-Meter will set you back a cool $5,000.”
17. Dudes, there’s a chapter on Jediism and Dudeism.
18. The panic behind Dungeons & Dragons exposed.
19. End of times examples.
20. Notes included.
1. Some amusing stones left unturned, as an example Jainism and some of their extreme practices such as not harming bugs.
2. Also, I would have added a chapter on religious practices with drugs.
3. Drawings aside, this book I suspect would be much better as an audio book.
4. Fun while it lasted but too brief.
5. Not all major religions covered.
6. Some missed opportunities came to mind that would have added value: a table illustrating animals worshipped (narrative there but better captured visually via a table).
7. No formal bibliography.
In summary, this is the perfect book to read on the beach. It’s fun, entertaining and provocative. The high-quality drawings complement the humorous tone. Andrews gives the audience exactly what he promised a light-hearted tour of odd religious beliefs around the world and in that regard he doesn’t disappoint. There were some stones left unturned but overall the book entertains and raises some eyebrows too. I recommend it!
Further recommendations: “Here and Now: A Whimsical Take on God” by Jeff Stilwell, “God Bless America: Strange and Unusual Beliefs and Practices in the United States” by Karen Stollznow, “Crucifying America” and “Atheists Can’t Be Republicans” by C.J. Werleman, Faith Healers” by James Randi, “Inside Scientology” by Janet Reitman, “Atheist Camel” by Bart Centre, “Nonbeliever Nation” by David Niose, “The Dark Side of Christian History” by Helen Ellerbe, “Nailed” by David Fitzgerald, “The God Argument” by A.C. Grayling, “50 popular beliefs that people think are true” by Guy P. Harrison, “The Moral Landscape” by Sam Harris, “Freethinkers” by Susan Jacoby, “The Religion Virus” Craig A. James, “Society Without God” by Phil Zuckerman, “Why I’m Not a Christian” by Richard Carrier, and “Why are you Atheists so Angry?” by Greta Christina.
This one is a hilarious look at bizarre religious practices around the world. I learned a lot that I didn't know before. Wildly entertaining and informative.
Top reviews from other countries
“Does a purposeful, rich, physically and mentally healthy life really require us to fumble so? When the sun sets on our puerile prayers and practices, do we really think our petitions have kept the stars in their proper alignment? Will we ever stop, look, listen and ultimately laugh at ourselves for being the pratfalling victims of our own superstitious joke? Can we summon the strength to decide that we don’t require a magical bauble chained around our necks, but can create good fortune, good medicine, good deeds, good times and goodwill through decision and action anchored in the real world?”