Posts Tagged ‘ richarddawkins ’

The God Delusion Best Most Interesting Review Ever!


Recently and ironically “The God Delusion” has become the bible of the atheist communities on the internet and around the world   Richard Dawkins, in the same metaphorical manner, has become that movements messiah, bringing in the good news:  You don’t need religion and God almost certainly does not exist.”  I hesitate to use the word “conversion”, but the point of the book is to convert you, to change your mind to make you an atheist.  He writes a very entertaining book that touches on social issues, history, philosophy, logic and of course science.  Science, no surprise, is the area done best in the book.

If I were to judge the book solely on how much it entertained me, how well it was written and how interesting it was to jump from modality to modality (social issues to philosophy to science and back to social issues), whether or not it was in the context of atheism, I’d give the book a big fat A+.  It was a very entertaining read.  He was able to explain difficult concepts in an easy to understand concise language.

Judging his work based on how well it accomplishes its objective, which is to create atheists, then it gets a more mediocre grade.  The work is more likely to change the mind of a person on the fence, or someone that was on the way to calling themselves an atheist.  The work is certainly strong enough to get them.  The more religious readers that picked the book up would have already made their decisions before starting page one, a lot like Dawkins I would imagine if he sat down with a bible tract.

The main problem with the book acting as a conversion piece, is that it is too rational.  Most people, when it concerns religion, don’t care to hear about anything rational.  Since the piece isn’t propagandistic in nature it won’t change the minds of anyone reasonable, the religious need slogans and one liners, Dawkins provides very few (one good one is: We’re all atheists, you don’t believe in Allah or Zeus either, I just go one god farther).  Something Dawkins should have been more careful with for a book meant to convert, are some of the polls he cited, that weren’t scientific (some were just internet polls) and he also more than once assumed what an unfinished study would produce.  These things are not good science and certainly have no place in a book that is going to be scoured for any mistakes that could possibly discredit him.

My final impression is that the book isn’t really for changing minds, but a book for other atheists and to a lesser extent humanists and skeptics in order to give them a common ground for discussion on the topic of the existence of the supernatural. It’s had a major effect on today’s culture and on the fight between religion and science, therefore it’s a must read, but thank… natural selection? god? that it’s a fun read.