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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fresh gale of reason
A Manual for Creating Atheists is a fresh gale of reason helping to blow away irrationality such as pseudoscience and superstition. I'm an avid reader of books on atheism, scepticism and reason, and it's been a while since I've been this impressed with the clarity of thought and the wealth of new ideas.
I was particularly impressed with chapter 8, Faith and the...
Published 11 months ago by Petri

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Epistemological - Water Torture
A turgid, dull book in which the word "epistemological" appears to be used at least 4 or 5 times on each page.

It really feels like the author happened on a word, and then decided how many times he could use it per page, per chapter. It's like water torture, I found myself just waiting for the next drip, the next "epistemological", the next...
Published 11 days ago by BluCat


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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fresh gale of reason, 8 Jan 2014
By 
Petri (Solf, Finland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: MANUAL FOR CREATING ATHEISTS (Paperback)
A Manual for Creating Atheists is a fresh gale of reason helping to blow away irrationality such as pseudoscience and superstition. I'm an avid reader of books on atheism, scepticism and reason, and it's been a while since I've been this impressed with the clarity of thought and the wealth of new ideas.
I was particularly impressed with chapter 8, Faith and the Academy, which is about epistemological relativism not only among the academic left but elsewhere in society as well. The book gives you a better understanding about how we know about reality. I completely agree with Peter Boghossian that faith is not a virtue and that the walls of respect built around religions don't need to be respected. Ideas can be attacked even though you treat people with respect.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I wish I had this book when I was 18, 12 Jan 2014
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Mr. GL Poulter (Ireland) - See all my reviews
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I left my family religion in my teens and, even after I left both the religion and the city, I still had heated arguments with family and church members when I visited my family on holidays.

I wish I'd read this book, because it shows you how to persuade without arguing, using pointed questioning to drill down to the foundational beliefs that the religious take on faith, and how not to accept the slippery "because I have faith" answer. If your goal is to persuade, then Boghossian's approach is far more effective than arguing with the religious on the metaphysics of deities or specific points of politics, morality and science.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moves proactive reason a vital step forward, whilst being the opposite of religious proselytising., 23 Jan 2014
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Despite the (pragmatic) title, this book is really "A manual for creating rational thinkers". The atheism part is just a natural conclusion that must come to anyone as a result of thinking critically and rationally. The opposite of proselytising, it helps and espouses 'HOW to think (clearly)', rather than the religiously favoured of 'WHAT to think'.

Furthermore, Peter Boghossian's method of "challenging the faith virus" is the first I've come across that bridges the gap from just knowing that it's not moral to stay silent, to crucially, having the tools and confidence to be able to actually try and help those afflicted by faith. And to do it in a proactive, sincere and non-confrontational way. Activism is what's needed to rid the world of faith and its harmful effects, and this book is ESSENTIAL for that.

I'm finding the real examples of "interventions' particularly helpful, and looking forward to the TV programme "Reason Whisperer' which will apparently show more of these real life interventions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Epistemological - Water Torture, 17 Dec 2014
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This review is from: MANUAL FOR CREATING ATHEISTS (Paperback)
A turgid, dull book in which the word "epistemological" appears to be used at least 4 or 5 times on each page.

It really feels like the author happened on a word, and then decided how many times he could use it per page, per chapter. It's like water torture, I found myself just waiting for the next drip, the next "epistemological", the next agggg!

There are far more engaging books on the subject of atheism; do yourself a favour and search them out. The book has been consigned to the charity shop bag.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent guide for any critical thinker, 1 April 2014
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This was one of the best and most enlightening books I have ever read. His critique of cognitive academic leftism is fantastic. Highly recommend
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 17 Feb 2014
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Excellent read, - Bogossian is straight to the fundamental point, - Faith, what it is, defined in laymans terms, and just how simple it is to expose it for what it is.......

Buy this book - read it!!
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An important issue – obscured by proselytizing fervour, 6 Feb 2014
By 
Michael Murauer "mmurauer" (Deggendorf; Niederbayern) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: MANUAL FOR CREATING ATHEISTS (Paperback)
The arguments for atheism, naturalism and secular humanism are around for quite a long time. So why is faith so resistant against them and what can be done to address this problem?

You get some answers to this question when reading Peter Boghossians book.
Basically he advocates a Socratic strategy of making people doubt by simply asking questions pointing to possible inconsistencies of their views. That's not novel but always deserves a reminder. More important is the authors insisting claim that we shouldn't accept an intellectual and social preserve for religious faith, treating it as a no-touch private preference or matter of taste. Boghossian's attack on constructivism and epistemological and moral (multicultural) relativism as an academic and social aberration is justified and deserves support. So far the motivating aspects of the book.

But unfortunately there are severe flaws. The author has no empathy for religious people. You can't understand the comforting effects of faith by simply stating that there is no evidence for it. For example many people want to believe that there beloved ones still exist somehow and somewhere after having passed away. Wrong - but we should be able to feel some empathy for the emotionally comforting effect of such wishful thinking. Lack of that pushes Boghossian to demand that we should try to talk everybody out of his or her faith, people personally unknown to us, everybody, everywhere, in principle regardless of the personal situation (desperate life conditions, terminal illness, high age, psychological stability or instability?). And here things begin to turn unpleasant and even potentially dangerous.

When finally classifying religious faith as a mental disease which should be addressed by public health programs Boghossian risks to shift to sectarianism and make his whole principally laudable enterprise look ridiculous. Religions are out-dated ways of interpreting the world and finding orientation in life but they are no diseases (with violent fanaticism as a borderline case between crime and mental disorder). If not so a considerable part of arts and human civilization would just be the product of insane people. Sounds a bit ahistorical, doesn't it?
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for all Rational Parents., 23 Jan 2014
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This book gave me the feeling that something can be done about the irrational "strangle-hold" that irrational religions have on the peoples of the world can be broken. I think it is a must read for all loving parents (and Grand Parents). The author has done a great service to human kind.
A Grand-dad.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Faith is belief without evidence., 29 Sep 2014
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Anthony Lacy "Alacy" (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: MANUAL FOR CREATING ATHEISTS (Paperback)
I'm an atheist. I thought I might be an agnostic but this uncompromising book put me firmly in my place. Prof. Boghosson takes no prisoners...and he leaves no room for sentiment. He does, of course, make it clear that the therapeutic techniques he describes to 'cure' people are aimed at the illness of faith not the people who 'host' the illness. His motive is to help them recover their rationalism and mental freedom by ridding themselves of the stultifying shackles of religion.

Even if you are a non believer, you might find his 'going for the jugular' techniques rather harsh...or maybe not.

I loved it but I'm not sure I am ready to unleash these methods on my believer friends and colleagues.
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41 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 16 Nov 2013
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I'm a confirmed atheist already. I rejected religion as a child, getting into trouble for missing RE lessons and singing childishly amusing versions of hymns at school. I took no notice of it at all through my 20s and 30s and then whilst working far from home and staying in hotels, I actually sat and thought through all of the tenets and tales of christianity. I even read the bible from cover to cover. I came out of this exercise completely against all forms of sky fairy worship; I can't keep quiet if anyone says anything even vaguely religious but I do try to make people laugh whilst inserting little bits of reason into their brains.
I am one of the people who Peter Boghossian is trying to reach with this book; I have a burning need to cure people of the mental illness that is religion, and this book has given me new weaponry to assist my mission.
Faith = Pretending to know something that you don't know.
Excellent book.
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MANUAL FOR CREATING ATHEISTS
MANUAL FOR CREATING ATHEISTS by BOGHOSSIAN P (Paperback - 28 Dec 2013)
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