Richard Dawkins was recently voted one of the world's top three intellectuals (alongside Umberto Eco and Noam Chomsky) by Prospect magazine. As the author of many classic works on science and philosophy, he has always asserted the irrationality of belief in God and the grievous harm it has inflicted on society. He now focuses his fierce intellect exclusively on this subject, denouncing its faulty logic and the suffering it causes.
While Europe is becoming increasingly secularized, the rise of religious fundamentalism, whether in the Middle East or Middle America, is dramatically and dangerously dividing opinion around the world. In America and elsewhere, a vigorous dispute between "intelligent design" and Darwinism is seriously undermining and restricting the teaching of science. In many countries religious dogma from medieval times still serves to abuse basic human rights, such as those of women and gay people ? and all from a belief in a God whose existence lacks evidence of any kind.
Dawkins attacks God in all his forms, from the sex-obsessed, cruel tyrant of the Old Testament to the more benign, but still illogical, Celestial Watchmaker favoured by some Enlightenment thinkers. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the ultimate improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry and abuses children. In The God Delusion, Dawkins presents a hard-hitting, impassioned rebuttal of religion of all types and does so in the lucid, witty and powerful language for which he is renowned. It is a brilliantly argued, fascinating polemic that will be required listening for anyone interested in this most emotional and important subject.
This is an abridged edition.
©Richard Dawkins; (P)Random House
"A spirited and exhilarating read...Dawkins comes roaring forth in the full vigour of his powerful arguments...." (Guardian)
"Everyone should read it. Aethists will love Mr Dawkins's incisive logic and rapier wit...." (The Economist)
"Listen to Dawkins to be REALLY reborn"
This is a great book, worthy of all the praise it gets.
The audio book's not available in Italy, where I live and I had to buy a hard copy in Britain. Makes you wonder, doesn't it? Running scared, are they? So they should be.
As Dawkins so rightly points out, so many religious people haven't even read their own religion's 'sacred' texts and don't even understand their religion in the slightest and, indeed, have never questioned it, but merely follow theocratic dogma blindly.
I urge everyone to read, or listen to, this book. It will, at the very least, make religious people examine themselves and their religion and will help atheists and would-be atheists understand just how very dangerous religion, and especially blind faith, really are and how all our lives are affected negatively by religion and ?faith-heads? on a daily basis.
I congratulate and thank Richard Dawkins.
"good for dawkins"
its an excellent book, i only wish more people would read it, maybe the world would be a better place. he has one of those very listenable voices too. I hope they put the rest of his work onto audio books.
"Enjoy your life as the fantastic person you are !!"
What a scholarly work this is !! What a joy to hear Richard's dulcet tones soothe away the unbridled fear and angst that goes with worrying about whether Mr. God is angry at your feelings or thoughts. How wonderful to listen to a gentle voice of reason explain that, as a human being you are entirely responsible for your own actions, and that there is no pretend person judging your every thought, waiting to pounce and brutally punish you endlessly for all eternity, should you transgress outdated Bronze Age laws or taboos. Worry no more about whether you are worshipping in the "one true, God approved" flavour of your chosen or inherited faith. Richard gives you the tools to realise that every human is so much more than a pawn in a pointless game of supernatural chess.
All people interested in religion whether believers, agnostic or athiest should listen to this book and honestly, openly ask themselves some very pertinent, searching questions !!
A fantastic achievement that transforms the whole idea of religion into an easy to digest laxative, so that you may flush all of it out from your system (and without the need for self flagellation)!!.
I loved this book, everyone can see where religion is taking us, and it's not a good place, this book helps sort out where we should be going with science rather than dogma. I read one review put on this site and just felt I had to answer, if the reviewer had actually read and digested this book then the reviewer would not be quite as blinded as they are. In a nutshell, if you want to definately win an argument against a religious fanatic, then this is the book for you, of course the fanatic won't let you win as they tend not to listen, but hey, you tried.
"It would have been better without the sarcasm"
This is a really interesting book. What undermines the author's otherwise compelling arguments is the frequent sarcastic comments delivered by another voice. Presumably, the comments are scripted by Dawkins, this being a device to separate Dawkins' usually rational arguments from his prejudices. Of course, the final irony is that Dawkins' ideas are ultimately rooted in a systematic set of values and therefore form a type of belief system.
"The Scientific Argument"
This is the classic work on the justification of the atheist point of view. Dawkins, one of the most respected biologists in the world, mounts a scathing attack on religion. Although he dismisses the fundamentals of all religious beliefs with the same argument, he gets particularly nasty with Christianity (and Judaism) because he is most familiar with these sets of beliefs. He systematically deals with each known argument raised by theists, creationists, agnostics etc and argues very cogently about the gaping holes in their arguments. Although he does sometimes get emotional he rarely strays away from his core tenet: that religion (in any manifestation) is not defensible from evidence or logic and can only survive by asking its believers to surrender rational thinking and scientific evidence - which characteristics he believes defines humanity. He is particularly angry that religions revert to subversive means in order to survive: they get their "victims" young when they are vulnerable and unable to defy the insistence of their parents or teachers. He uses many interesting historical facts and scientific illustrations to back his argument, as well as some really frightening quotes from religious leaders. Written in 2006 it makes for compelling reading, no matter what your belief system comprises. Great narrator too. Highly recommended (and quite quick to read actually).
"Why bring out the abridged version first!!"
Oh dear! Now dont get me wrong I really liked this book have listened to it multiple times, but am sad to see that the full audio book is now available on audible over one year after I purchased the original abridged book. If I had known this I would have waited for the full version which is 3 hours longer. I will now have to re-purchase the book to listen to the extra 3 hours missing. :-( feel as though I've wasted an audible credit.
Dawkins brings a great perspective to his the world of religion.
He is passionate, articulate, and easy to listen to. His passion can be slightly over bearing at times, but overall this is a great 'read' and a must for all.
This book is amazing. The arguments are clear and well thought out. The narration by the author and his wife is really entertaining. I would really recommend this book to anybody with an open mind.
"Brilliant Eye Opener"
Richard Dawkins is a giant among intellectuals of our time. this book answers many questions and he faces up to the old forbidding fortresses of religious dogma with great courage and probity. The narrative is also very well done!
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