For much of Western history, belief in God was taken for granted. As society has grown more secular, however, people have increasingly expressed disbelief in God. Today, a quarter of Americans are religiously unaffiliated, many of whom identify as atheists and agnostics.
As the number of atheists has grown, so too have debates around the legitimacy of religion. Too often, these debates become embroiled in vitriol and personal attacks. And even those that take a more civil approach often focus on proving or disproving God's existence rather than fostering dialogue.
This audio course presents balanced ways for believers and non-believers to engage in thoughtful conversations with each other. Presented by Joseph Godfrey, a leading professor on the philosophy of religion, these lectures are both analytical and sensitive.
You will explore the different forms of atheism and scientific theories used to support the nonexistence of God. You'll also delve into classic texts by atheists (Nietzsche, Sartre, Marx) as well as insights about atheism from Christians like Aquinas, Karl Rahner, and John Hick.
As you grapple with the complex questions that arise from these thinkers and texts, you will gain a deeper understanding of evidential arguments against God while also considering how such evidence does not necessarily block paths to belief.
What listeners say about Unbelief: Understanding Atheism
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atheist, agnostic or theist
I recommend this audiobook to atheist, agnostic or theist likely to engage and/or practice the Abrahamic traditions. My only disappointment regards the lack of a text outline for reference. Godfrey is a gentle thoughtful sage and a welcome alternative to the cacophony that presents as current religious commentary. If i find my way clear of all that static i am usually mystified as to the foundations upon which reasonable atheists and agnostics build their moral character. Godfrey presents me with many logical and cultural tools to imagine such structures. It is worthwhile listening to a speaker who can weave Feuerbach, Freud, Marx, Rahner, Nagel, Gould and —!!Keillor!! into a concise set of lectures.
1 person found this helpful
Basic but Informative
AT A GLANCE: A Jesuit priest gives a basic and impartial overview of atheist arguments against theism. CONTENT: Many topics are covered though in uneven depth. A good deal of time is devoted to explaining things like the problem of evil and how syllogisms work, and helpful distinctions are made (evidential atheism vs atheism of suspicion, etc). Listeners are acquainted with ideas from Feuerbach, Nietzsche and Sartre, with little or no attention given to New Atheists like Harris, Dennett & company. The author is highly sympathetic to atheist leanings and presents the arguments in academic fashion. This would work as a presentation for senior high school or undergraduate students, though will prove less useful for those already familiar with the relevant literature. NARRATOR: Fr Godfrey is a specialist on these topics. His voice is articulate and well-rehearsed, if slow (I would recommend 1.25x playback speed). It should however be noted that the lectures are not consistent in sound; in some he is energized and vibrant, while in others he sounds exhausted by comparison. This is only mildly distracting and does not take away from the content. OVERALL: Recommended for those with minimal background in Christian-Atheist dialogue and wish to be acquainted with its elementary concepts and barriers.