"When we let go of false beliefs that are useless and dangerous, we will become virtuous and rational beings..."

This timely, passionate, and articulate book tackles the problematic search for truth and knowledge in an era in which unprecedented levels of misinformation and disinformation are circulated for personal and political gain. The author identifies how and why erroneous beliefs about "happiness, morals, and politics" are formed and passed on, often from generation to generation and across societies, and makes suggestions on how to "implement solutions on personal and societal levels."

Beginning with the position that we are "created by nature, exist in nature, and adhere to the laws of nature," the book has an ethically focused tone that agrees with some tenets of Eastern and Western philosophies while exploring perceptions and misperceptions about life and reality. One difference readers will note is that this narrative supposes that humans are purely physical beings and that soul is simply an extension of physicality. This is a view that contradicts a contemporary paradigm in which religion, psychology, neuroscience, and quantum physics converge to suggest human consciousness exhibits a union of body, mind, and spirit.

What is not unusual is that the author starts with natural law before branching off into other areas of thought. Natural law, also known as the philosophy of natural law, has a long history that begins with the Greek philosopher Aristotle and is embraced subsequently by Roman jurists. It is mentioned in the Old and New Testaments of the Christian Bible and embraced by Christian philosophers and Catholic saints. Later, natural law was highly regarded by thinkers in the Age of Enlightenment, and the position was used to question the divine rights of royalty. It is thought to be a key component of the U.S. Declaration of Independence and the French Declaration of Rights. Natural law is a basis for English Common Law, and the U.S. legal system is modeled in many aspects after English Common Law. Intriguingly, the book does not take the time to dive deeply into the history of this philosophical inquiry and then use that exploration as a jumping-off point, as is common in most works of this type. Instead, the author has chosen a more novel approach and opts to offer discussions that mostly relate to the here and now.

Seventeen themed chapters present compelling insights and arguments about topics such as cause and effect, the properties of matter, avoiding errors in thinking, evil and morality, order, confusion and intelligence, and related topics. Almada skillfully refutes some present-day arguments and beliefs about life through the lens of natural law. The philosophy of nature is an experiential path, suggesting that direct experience is the best way to discover truth: "Through experience we see that nature acts by simple, regular, and unchanging laws. Through the senses we are bound to this Universal Nature and must learn from experience about her laws."

Ultimately, as nature has a way of achieving balance, it is up to each individual to discover and determine what is personally applicable in this narrative. The experiential aspect of the law of nature suggests that we all must examine and/or experience its positions to determine that these are logical, sound, and able to create wholesome lives in just societies. Readers will undoubtedly find a wealth of writing here that is visionary, truthful, and useful.

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