A Model of Religion

Non-Fiction - Religion/Philosophy
80 Pages
Reviewed on 04/07/2023
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Doreen Chombu for Readers' Favorite

Everyone has their views on life, God, and existence. Even if you belong to the same congregation or live in the same house, your core being will be different. Outsider: A Model of Religion by Dr. William Turmel is a discussion that explains this phenomenon. The author begins by giving an in-depth summary of the previous installments in this series. He discusses the theories about humanity and the universe that have been established and how they are connected. In this book, he seeks to build a religious model that explains the relationship between humans and God or gods, depending on your personal beliefs. To build this model, the author uses Christianity and the Bible as the reference religion and source material respectively. He answers thought-provoking questions like whether God exists, what is a soul, when creation occurred, and many more.

I love reading books that make me think outside the box and give me a new perspective on my understanding of things. Outsider opened my mind to a new way of viewing life and human existence. Dr. William Turmel uses a casual, warm, and conversational tone throughout the book, which makes it engaging and easy to understand. I appreciated that the author gave a summary of the previous models because it allowed continuity for this discussion. Every stage is vital in this book. The author gradually builds on each topic until he gives you the bigger picture of these models. This book is well-written and organized, and I recommend it to anyone who wishes to find the meaning of life and how man connects to everything.

Diana Lopez

Critical thinking allows us to examine new opinions objectively. It is also important to reflect on those ideas that deal with our inner being so that we can grow as individuals. Dr. William Turmel has developed a framework to analyze the human essence. Using this, he explores the physical and metaphysical world, as well as topics such as the heart, the mind, and the soul. He analyzes the spiritual qualities of man and his many attributes. He explains the difference between acting on external influences or from personal conviction. His viewpoint is not only based on religion, but he also refers to science, philosophy, and culture. Outsider: A Model of Religion will give you a new and enriching perspective on life.

Outsider is part of a series of books, but you don't need to read the previous ones to understand the ideas it introduces. Dr. William Turmel expresses himself clearly and uses examples that are easy to understand. This book is appropriate even for those who are new to the exploration of religious concepts. The content is well-developed. The author first defines the terms he uses to establish a context and then covers topics such as the importance of correct decision-making and how to act appropriately. He comments on faith and sin, but without judgment. I liked the examples provided because he often uses parables to support his convictions. He also gives explanations that clarify various spiritual beliefs, history, and even scientific models. This provides a great opportunity to reflect on oneself and the world from a modern perspective.

Courtnee Turner Hoyle

Outsider by Dr. William Turmel provides an overview of the first four books in the A Model of Religion series and explains creation and religion in relation to human existence. While referencing many religions and their numerous denominations, Christianity is the focus where the history and objectives of the faith are discussed. Dr. Turmel explains the difference between people at their core and the personality shaped through learned experiences, and the role of the outsider is discussed. Cognition and consciousness are also considered, and decisions about sin are examined and evaluated.

Dr. William Turmel is thorough as he reviews the first four books in this series, and even though we should consider digesting each of them, it is possible to read this text without prior knowledge of the first four selections. Dr. Turmel uses parables that Jesus told to increase our awareness of ourselves from a spiritual perspective. Good advice and practical exercises are discussed to help us learn to live more positively. This unique and enlightening guide explains humanity and the human soul in terms that are easy to understand. The conversational tone allows us to follow the text without becoming overwhelmed or confused. No matter our beliefs, we can better understand our position as functioning humans in the universe. Outsider provides a reference for those who seek spiritual depth and growth or those who enjoy theology.

K.C. Finn

Outsider: A Model of Religion by Dr. William Turmel continues his exploration of religion and spiritual philosophy. It forms the third work in the Outsider series, following those focusing on humanity and the wider cosmos. This concise but deeply considered work offers a model through which we can see ourselves differently and change the way we think. Where difficult thoughts and other voices might enter our heads and try to make a negative impact on our lives, this practical work allows us to evict those ‘stowaways’ that are not helpful to us. In doing so, we free up space for our true selves and can adopt more helpful ‘voices’ moving forward.

Dr. William Turmel offers much sage advice in this complex work of theology and philosophy, and the examination of religion and spirituality in this volume made me deeply intrigued to see what the rest of the series has to offer. Though it’s by no means the easy-access approach to self-help that many quick-fix books offer, this is a read that’s well worth the time and effort. Turmel discusses God and our view of faith from such a poignant and heartfelt place. He blends psychology with emotional attachment and social constructs to offer a fuller picture of why we might choose to believe and how our perspective on our souls can change how we live and feel about our lives. Outsider will certainly appeal to those already following this model, but it’s also a strong standalone read with much to offer anyone interested in philosophy and spirituality.

Pikasho Deka

Have you ever thought about what is your purpose on this planet, or questioned yourself about the true nature of reality? If you love to read about topics related to the fundamental aspects of our existence, then Outsider: A Model of Religion by Dr. William Turmel is the perfect book for you. This is the fifth installment of Dr. Turmel's Outsider Model, a template that examines the different aspects of human existence. While the first three models focused on the fundamental aspects, the fourth one touched on the nature of our Cosmos as viewed from the outside. This edition covers our understanding of God and creation as seen from a neutral point of view. What exactly drives our thoughts, motives, and actions and what role does the soul play in our physical or metaphysical existence?

For readers who enjoy thought-provoking philosophical, theological, or scientific discourse, Outsider is the book you should be looking to read. Dr. William Turmel uses an accessible narrative style that is easy to understand, given the complexity of the subject matter, and it makes the reading experience all the more enjoyable. Using Christianity as an example, Dr. Turmel sheds light on the beliefs and ideas presented in Christian texts and how they correspond in unique ways to different people's faiths. This will help readers to understand their own religious and spiritual convictions better. Turmel presents his ideas and hypothesis with well-reasoned and logical arguments that will make you think and delve deeper into the subject. This is a riveting book that everyone should read.