Reasonable Doubts

A Religious Skeptic Learns a Thing or Two About God


By Cheryl Berman
April 2010
Urim Publishers
Distributed by Coronet Books Inc.
ISBN: 9789655240399
159 pages
$19.95 Hardcover

The American philosopher William James once said: ''Faith means belief in something concerning which doubt is theoretically possible.'' But what happens when faith slowly recedes into doubt? What happens to the God-fearing individual who wakes up one morning and finds herself questioning the basic religious assumptions she built her life upon?

Reasonable Doubts is the memoir of a religious skeptic's endeavor to rediscover her source of faith, from the ground up, as she regained the ability to read following her accident. On the way she encounters various religious philosophers and thinkers, such as Saadya, Maimonides, Henry Bergson, Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik, Rudolph Otto, and Abraham Joshua Heschel, who provide her with clues to a spiritual resolution. Berman utilizes scenes from the Book of Job as well as snapshots from her own life to explicate the various philosophical theories that make up the stops along her journey.

Jewish literature regarding faith crises is sparse, leaving skeptics and sufferers alike secluded, precisely when they need to be embraced. Reasonable Doubts seeks to reassure those undergoing faith crises that they are not alone. Reasonable Doubts also provides philosophical suggestions towards solutions to some basic religious and spiritual quandaries. Ultimate conclusions to most of these issues, however, lie within the soul of reader.

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