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Seven Types of Atheism

By: John Gray
Narrated by: Guy Mott
Length: 6 hrs and 48 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (17 ratings)
Regular price: £14.99
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Summary

Sunday Times best seller. 

A meditation on the importance of atheism in the modern world - and its inadequacies and contradictions - by one of Britain's leading philosophers.

'When you explore older atheisms, you will find 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 narrow derision of religion in the name of an often very vaguely understood 'science'. John Gray's stimulating and extremely enjoyable new audiobook describes the rich, complex world of the atheist tradition, a tradition which he sees as in many ways as rich as that of religion itself, as well as being deeply intertwined with what is so often crudely viewed as its 'opposite'. 

The result is an audiobook that sheds an extraordinary and varied light on what it is to be human and on the thinkers who have, at different times and places, battled to understand this issue.

©2018 John Gray (P)2018 W. F. Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"A highly readable, fascinating book that jerks the debate on religion versus atheism right out of its crusted rut into the light of serious intellectual scrutiny." (Observer)

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  • Benjamin
  • STOKE ON TRENT, United Kingdom
  • 30-10-18

Good but not what I expected

Fantastic and challenging representation of key thinkers in Atheism. I greatly enjoyed it and I the narrator brought clarity and seriousness to the subject matter.
However, if you are expecting a clear text which sets out 7 types of Atheism you will be disappointed. I found it to be rambling - although not in a bad sense and understandable given the breadth and depth of the issues the author is discussing. But it is not a text book outlining these main ideas of Atheism.
Be prepared to listen to the author viciously criticise many well known philosophers for flaws in their arguments, selfish behavior and hypocrisy as their lives do not match their stated views. There is plenty of criticism also of the standard church which many readers of the book will approve of and long sections of the book devoted to areas (although interesting) are not as relevant as others to the subject of atheism.
The book seems a little lost in that it tries to be so many things: 1. Thoughts about atheism 2. Brief history of certain philosophical views, 3. brief history of key atheist philosophers.
You can tell by my grammar in this review that I am no literary genius, however, I really feel the book could do with some more structure.
Having said all that, I did enjoy it hugely. I will listen to it again and see it I can discern the reason for it's currently layout.

Edit 1. I have listened to it again and I enjoyed it again (which is rare for me as I normally never listen to anything more than once). It does need more structure but it is absolutely packed with interesting concepts and I believe some original ideas.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Interesting but irritating reader

I’m enjoying the content. Gray puts atheism in context dispelling myths and offering a much more intelligent and subtle understanding than the Dawkins, Hitchens variety. But the reader irritatingly mid-pronounces words, to my mind anyway. Logos, Platonism, Utilitarianism, eschatology all come with odd renderings which grate on me. But i’m learning a lot from this very rewarding thinker so no regrets about choosing it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Urbane review of a contentious subject

Wisely dismissing the "new atheists" right at the start, the author gives us an urbane and well researched tour around a variety of atheisms over the ages. As a life-long non believer, I found to my surprise that this book helped me to better understand the religious impulse, which the author likens to music or poetry rather than a failed attempt at science.

Please note that there are two authors called John Grey in print. This one did not write "Men are from Mars etc."

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Aamir Niazi
  • 01-01-19

Great historical perspective

the conclusions logic is sound but the conclusion is not comforting in the least and probably that is the point.