13

It was written 20 or 30 years ago. The premise was that religion and religious thought was the result of an interstellar robot that passed by Earth every 1000 years or so. The characters in the book were humans who were on a warship that was going to go try to destroy that robot. As they got closer to it, they started experiencing religious activity. (I don't know any better way to put that, but miracles and visitations and the like.).

The one scene that sticks with me has to do with a philosopher who is visited by what claims to be his future self and that future self had a book titled something like "Why I Now Believe in Religion". The philosopher who had been a life-long sceptic is immediately converted by what's in the book; although it's never specifically stated what the book says.

I'd love to reread it, but can't remember the title or author.

1 Answer 1

16

"The Tides of God" by Ted Reynolds (1989)

https://english.netmassimo.com/2019/02/18/the-tides-of-god-by-ted-reynolds/

It was written 20 or 30 years ago. The premise was that religion and religious thought was the result of an interstellar robot that passed by Earth every 1000 years or so.

In “The Tides of God” religious faith is the result of the close passage of an alien entity that influences the minds of humans making them irrational. That happened in the past but it could happen again and the solution is to destroy that entity eliminating its threat once and for all. However, despite the underlying theme, in the novel theology is almost absent and philosophy is limited

The characters in the book were humans who were on a warship that was going to go try to destroy that robot. As they got closer to it, they started experiencing religious activity. (I don't know any better way to put that, but miracles and visitations and the like.).

What Ted Reynolds tells are the reactions of the crew when the starship getting close to the entity and the consequences of the irrationality that affects its members, which contrast with their normal behavior. Their society of rational people isn’t perfect but made huge progress compared to the Dark Ages and yet remains vulnerable because the human mind is vulnerable.

Previous discussion Novel where humans discover God exists as a space entity periodically coming closer to Earth; they board an alien spaceship and attempt to kill him

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.