From the provocative author of Straw Dogs comes an incisive, surprising intervention in the political and scientific debate over religion and atheism
When you explore older atheisms, you will find that some of your firmest convictions--secular or religious--are highly questionable. If this prospect disturbs you, what you are looking for may be freedom from thought.
For a generation now, public debate has been corroded by a shrill, narrow derision of religion in the name of an often vaguely understood "science." John Gray's stimulating and enjoyable new book, Seven Types of Atheism, describes the complex, dynamic world of older atheisms, a tradition that is, he writes, in many ways intertwined with and as rich as religion itself.
Along a spectrum that ranges from the convictions of "God-haters" like the Marquis de Sade to the mysticism of Arthur Schopenhauer, from Bertrand Russell's search for truth in mathematics to secular political religions like Jacobinism and Nazism, Gray explores the various ways great minds have attempted to understand the questions of salvation, purpose, progress, and evil. The result is a book that sheds an extraordinary light on what it is to be human.
In an impassioned rebuttal to religion, a noted scientist and author of The Blind Watchmaker speaks out on the irrationality of belief in God; criticizes the dire impact of religion on society, from the Crusades to September 11; and argues that religion fuels war, bigotry, child abuse, violence, and other ills. Reprint.
In an impassioned rebuttal to religion, a noted scientist and author of The Blind Watchmaker speaks out on his the irrationality of belief in God; criticizes the dire impact of religion on society, from the Crusades to September 11; and argues that religion fuels war, bigotry, child abuse, violence, and other ills.
If the First Amendment protects the separation of church and state, why have atheists had to fight for their rights? In this valuable work, R. Laurence Moore and Isaac Kramnick reveal the fascinating history of atheism in America and the legal challenges to federal and state laws that made atheists second-class citizens.
Richard Dawkins was fifteen when he stopped believing in God.
Deeply impressed by the beauty and complexity of living things, he'd felt certain they must have had a designer. Learning about evolution changed his mind. Now one of the world's best and bestselling science communicators, Dawkins has given readers, young and old, the same opportunity to rethink the big questions. In twelve fiercely funny, mind-expanding chapters, Dawkins explains how the natural world arose without a designer--the improbability and beauty of the "bottom-up programming" that engineers an embryo or a flock of starlings--and challenges head-on some of the most basic assumptions made by the world's religions: Do you believe in God? Which one? Is the Bible a "Good Book"? Is adhering to a religion necessary, or even likely, to make people good to one another? Dissecting everything from Abraham's abuse of Isaac to the construction of a snowflake, Outgrowing God is a concise, provocative guide to thinking for yourself. Praise for Outgrowing God "My son came home from his first day in the sixth grade with arms outstretched plaintively demanding to know: 'Have you ever heard of Jesus?' We burst out laughing. Maybe not our finest parenting moment, given that he was genuinely distraught. He felt that he had woken up one day to a world in which his peers were expressing beliefs he found frighteningly unreasonable. He began devouring books like The God Delusion, books that helped him formulate his own arguments and helped him stand his ground. Dawkins's new book is special in the terrain of atheists' pleas for humanism and rationalism precisely since it speaks to those most vulnerable to the coercive tactics of religion. As Dawkins himself says in the dedication, this book is for 'all young people when they're old enough to decide for themselves.' It is also, I must add, for their parents."--Janna Levin, author of Black Hole Blues "When someone is considering atheism I tell them to read the Bible first and then Dawkins. Outgrowing God--second only to the Bible "--Penn Jillette, author of God, No
Throughout history, arguments for and against the existence of God have been largely confined to philosophy and theology, while science has sat on the sidelines. Despite the fact that science has revolutionized every aspect of human life and greatly clarified our understanding of the world, somehow the notion has arisen that it has nothing to say about the possibility of a supreme being, which much of humanity worships as the source of all reality. This physicist and author contends that, if God exists, some evidence for this existence should be detectable by scientific means, especially considering the central role that God is alleged to play in the operation of the universe and the lives of humans. Treating the traditional God concept, as conventionally presented in the Judeo-Christian and Islamic traditions, like any other scientific hypothesis, Stenger examines all of the claims made for God's existence. He considers the latest Intelligent Design arguments as evidence of God's influence in biology. He looks at human behavior for evidence of immaterial souls and the possible effects of prayer. He discusses the findings of physics and astronomy in weighing the suggestions that the universe is the work of a creator and that humans are God's special creation. After evaluating all the scientific evidence, Stenger concludes that beyond a reasonable doubt the universe and life appear exactly as we might expect if there were no God.
Atheist Mind, Humanist Heart asks an essential question for the 45 million Americans who self-identify as nonreligious: "So, you don't believe in God; now what?" This question is increasingly important, as one-third of young adults under the age of thirty consider themselves nonreligious. With a scientific eye and an empathetic heart, the authors turn conventional perceptions about atheism on their head. They show that atheism need not be reactionary (against religion and God), but rather that it can offer a clear set of constructive principles to live by, which establish atheism as a positive worldview. Following a philosophical approach grounded in logic and evidence, Bayer and Figdor take readers on an inspiring journey to discover how to live a reasonable, ethical, and happy life without God. The readers are engaged at every step, encouraged to self-reflect and ultimately uncover their own set of personal beliefs.
Fighting God is a firebrand manifesto from one of the most recognizable faces of atheism. In his book, Silverman-a walking, talking atheist billboard known for his appearances on Fox News-discusses the effectiveness, ethics and impact of the in-your-face-atheist who refuses to be silent.
Silverman argues that religion is more than just wrong: it is malevolent and does not deserve our respect. It is our duty to be outspoken and do what we can to bring religion down. Examining the mentality, methods and issues facing the firebrand atheist, Silverman presents an overwhelming argument for firebrand atheism and reveals:
- All religion is cafeteria religion and almost all agnostics are atheists.
- American society grants religion a privileged status, despite the intentions of the Founding Fathers.
- Christian politicians have adversely (and un-Constitutionally) affected our society with regard to science, health, women's rights, and gay rights.
- The notion of "atheist Jews" is a lie forced on us by religion.
- It is not "Islamophobia" to observe dangerous teachings and disproportionate violence in Islam.
- Atheists are slowly but surely winning the battle.
Fighting God is a provocative, unapologetic book that takes religion to task and will give inspiration to non-believers and serve as the ultimate answer to apologists.