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Jesus and the Bicameral Brain

Knowing and Being

James P. Danaher

224 pages
Paragon House

It is time to rethink the gospel. When the church of five hundred years ago started selling indulgences, it was time to rethink the gospel. Jesus repeatedly says “follow me” and his words instruct us concerning how to do that. Unfortunately, his words put us at odds with the world, so we invent doctrines that are merely things to believe in order to find ways around his words. When today's Christianity is reduced to a gospel of material prosperity and the service of political issues like abortion and homosexuality, it is time to rethink the gospel and rediscover Jesus' words.

If one believes that they know the gospel, the spiritual journey to which Jesus calls us comes to an end. The words of Jesus are always addressing what goes beyond our knowing but not beyond our experience. Jesus' words cannot be formed into doctrines and theologies. They are living words meant to take root at the core of our being and lead us through this spiritual journey that is the gospel. Neurologists have shown that the brains' right hemisphere relates more to intuition while the left is related to language and logic.

In 2009, Iain McGilchrist's The Master and His Emissary: The Divided Brain and the Making of the Western World, revealed the enormous differences between the knowing left-brain, and the right-brain which opens us to what is beyond our knowing. Danaher uses the bicameral brain model to help explain the spiritual journey to which Jesus calls us.

The gospel is not something to know but something to be, but the words of Jesus are never compatible with the left-brain's knowing that we have inherited from the world. Jesus' words are meant to be experienced from that level of consciousness that takes us beyond what we know in order to experience the transformative journey that is the gospel.

Author Bio
James P. Danaher, Ph.D. is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and past head of the philosophy department at Nyack College, New York, NY. This is his ninth book about Jesus and the Gospels.