The Grand Delusion
Wisdom Publications, 328 pages, paperback
Signed by Steve Hagen
This is a fun, unique book that goes deep into the great mysteries of knowing.
In The Grand Delusion, Hagen drills deep into the most basic assumptions, strengths, and limitations of religion and belief, philosophy and inquiry, science and technology. In doing so, he shines new light on the question Why is there Something rather than Nothing?—and shines this light from an entirely unexpected (and largely unexplored) direction.
Using a provocative mix of examples from physics, philosophy, religion, myth, neuroscience, and mathematics—and a clever conversational exploration between Hagen and his interlocutor, “ANYONE”—this book also offers a fresh perspective on questions that science, philosophy, and religion have long grappled with.
Layer by layer, Hagen examines the questions we ask, the way we ask them, the assumptions and beliefs we hold dear, and the ways in which we separate ourselves from the very answers we seek. In the process, he draws on sources that include Huang Po, Richard Feynman, Sir Arthur Eddington, Hui-Neng, Susan B. Anthony, Daniel Dennett, Joseph Campbell, Dogen, Emily Dickinson, Nagarjuna, Ikkyu, William I. McLaughlin, Sam Harris, and Henry David Thoreau.
Ultimately, this book reveals how all of these fundamental questions—and many, many more—stem from a single error, a single unwarranted belief, a single Grand Delusion.
Endorsements for The Grand Delusion
“I love Steve Hagen’s books! He manages to write about the most abstruse truths and make them sound as sensible and as straightforward as baseball scores—how does he do it? This book—which is so much fun to read and is full of scientific as well as everyday examples—is written in the form of a dialog between Steve and ‘Anyone’ (you and I) in which everything Anyone thinks makes sense doesn’t. By the time Anyone gets to the end, Anyone agrees. This is a wonderful book.”
—Norman Fischer, poet, Zen priest, and author most recently of The World Could Be Otherwise (prose) and On A Train At Night (poetry)
“A brilliant philosophical masterpiece. Hagen explores some of our most cherished assumptions about reality and self in a thought-provoking yet lighthearted interview-style conversation. This book is bound to shake up how you understand your life.”
—Mark Van Buren, author of The Fool's Guide to Actual Happiness
“Steve Hagen's best and most ambitious book, where he gets to the bottom of religion, philosophy, and science and settles the deepest questions that have long bedeviled human beings. Amazingly, he succeeds at all of the above in a book that's immensely readable, enjoyable, and accessible.”
—Scott Edelstein, author of The User's Guide to Spiritual Teachers
“A thought-provoking read. Steve Hagen has a knack for taking complex ideas and presenting them simply and straightforwardly.”
—Tim Burkett, author of Nothing Holy About It