Customer Review

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Rigorous enough - but rather dry, 15 Oct 2010
This review is from: There Is a God: How the World's Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind (Paperback)
For all the excitement that philosopher Anthony Flew's renunciation of lifelong atheism generated, this account of the reasoning process that led to it is a rather flat and curiously unsatisfying read. To be sure, the philosophical arguments are robust enough (though Flew not infrequently draws heavily on others' conclusions to buttress his own), and the even-handed treatment of the counter-arguments refreshing. Flew makes a case for concluding that such elements of the physical world as the fine-tuning of the four fundamental forces and the development of the cell's information-processing capacity point to a divine mind. But this conclusion is delivered in a neutral, detached way that almost invites a `so what ?' in response.

His deity seems to resemble very closely the deistic God so popular with 18th century thinkers, a being who set everything going and then, for all practical purposes, retired from the scene and accordingly demands nothing of us by way of response. Flew's openness to the idea that this God might one day reveal him[sic]self (for example in the way that Christians claim was the case with Jesus) is humble and open-minded, but you almost get the feeling he would greet such a revelation in the same reasoned, deductive way he examines here the arguments for a divine purpose/mind `behind it all': interrogate rather than embrace or befriend. Good as far as it goes, then - but definitely on the dry side.
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Review Details

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Jeremy Bevan
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   

Location: West Midlands, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 418