299 of 331 people found the following review helpful
Read it with an open mind,
This review is from: God is Not Great: The Case Against Religion (Hardcover)
This book is a worthy companion to Dawkins "The God Delusion". Whereas Dawkins is a scientist, this author takes more of a historical perspective.
I have read a great deal of the current fashion of these type of books. I have enjoyed them all, but Hitchens is perhaps the best of all. He is fearless and expresses himself with great eloquence. You really have to admire his convictions, even if you do not agree with his every point.
Hitchens shows why he believes religion to be a consequence of our evolutionary childhood, why he believes it should not be considered a source of morality and all the ways in which it has demonstrated (he believes) its tendency to forster totalitarian malevolence.
It is unfortunate that many of the reviews posted are vitreolic arguements from pro- or anti-creationists. Clearly many people take great offence to their faith being questioned. But surely if ones faith is trully strong, they should be able to respond to such challenges in a positive way? It is scarcely likely that a book is going to change your lifelong held beliefs, so surely it can be read with an open mind as to understanding other peoples point of view.
The only criticism I would make of this book is that sometimes too much knowledge is assumed of the reader. At times I found myself having to contentrate quite hard as I was not overly familiar with the historical events.
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Showing 1-10 of 16 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 5 Dec 2007 22:01:56 GMT
Last edited by the author on 5 Dec 2007 22:03:36 GMT
Pete L. says:
Thanks, for what seems to be a fair review....refreshingly,without the vituporous comments. I think I'll probably buy this book....if only to read what the 'committed' christians are getting so hot under the collar about... maybe 'they're' closer to hell than they think... at least when I die I'll not worry about the heating bills I'm bound to go down rather than up.. having never been christened nor baptised, I have an open mind towards religion, tending to err on the side of non-religious, but with the heartfelt conviction that everyman has the right to believe what he/she wants, and without the pressure of others. I do however feel strongly against brainwashing and the 'get 'em while they're young' philosophy, that almost every religion practices.
Posted on 16 Jan 2008 09:11:22 GMT
Last edited by the author on 16 Jan 2008 09:13:26 GMT
S. Williams says:
If only more reviewers would write like you. Your review has made me want to buy this book. I am a non-practicing Catholic, but am interested and respect other religions and I enjoy it when a writer is not affraid of putting their point across even if it is going to upset others. Like Pete L. says, despite my religion and beliefs, according to the catholic church I will most probably end up going "down" despite being a good human being, so why not sin a little more. Thank you
In reply to an earlier post on 22 Jan 2008 07:56:56 GMT
Pete L - thankyou for taking time to make your very kind comments. I am glad you found my review useful.
In reply to an earlier post on 22 Jan 2008 07:57:54 GMT
S Williams - thankyou for taking time to make your very kind reply to my post. I am pleased you found my review helpful.
Posted on 9 Apr 2008 01:45:12 BDT
K. Moss says:
In reply to an earlier post on 2 May 2008 22:01:44 BDT
like I said, If your faith is strong enough then you will be able to respond in a positive way. Yes, Hitchens does have misquotes and innacuracies, but I have failed to find a religious text which does not do likewise.
In reply to an earlier post on 11 May 2008 13:50:29 BDT
Last edited by the author on 11 May 2008 13:50:49 BDT
Well done K. Moss for being an apologist for christianity. Your God would be proud of you, if your God existed, that is.
Supporting data??? You actually have some? WOW! Care to share it or is it just priviledged to believers? Since so far NOT ONE religion has ever provided any support for any one of their claims you have not the least grounds to start moaning about the way religion has been treated. Questioning as you put has never been fine in the eyes of religion for what else was the law of blasphemy for other than to stamp out questions about religion that the religion could not answer. Today blasphemy is a bankrupt concept and and with the dire religion it was designed to protect should be thrown in the trash can.
As far as I'm concerned any religion is an open target whenever it is in the public domain. If you want it to remain unchallenged then your religion should simply be your own private practice for it is up to you if you wish to believe the unsupported drivel that constitutes religion.
In reply to an earlier post on 18 May 2008 23:13:20 BDT
You say that "As far as I'm concerned any religion is an open target whenever it is in the public domain". So are you therefore OK with religions which are secretive closed cults?
Personally I have as much faith in the existance of God as you seem to. However, that should not prevent one from being open-minded to others viewpoints.
In reply to an earlier post on 20 May 2008 01:36:34 BDT
One can be open-minded right up until the point where a viewpoint contradicts the evidence of your senses and rationality. At that point the viewpoint should be scrutinised very carefully. I'm glad that more people are now doing so. We should respect another's right to have a different viewpoint or belief, but we are not compelled to respect the belief itself if it turns out to be ridiculous. Religious beliefs should have no further protection than any other beliefs and it is this that the religious do not fully grasp. If you're going to put an idea out into the world, you'd better make sure it's a good one, and you'd better be ready for it to be shot down if it's not. That people live and die for beliefs that are unsubstantiated by any empirical evidence is truly one of the more curious human traits, and one that we are doing well to be watchful of. If the religious would like to be left alone, they should make no claim that God has any effect on the world and that therefore their religion offers them special insight into the way that they and others should live their lives. As soon as they do that, they are no longer just holding beliefs. They are making claims about the real world that can be, and should be, refuted. There are fewer and fewer refuges for the religious, religion is no basis for a morality, it is no basis for science, it is no basis for knowledge. Religion should be confined to theology only and I feel the tide might be slowly turning.
In reply to an earlier post on 29 May 2008 23:14:54 BDT
the last sentance of your staement is, I believe, the most pertinent. Religion is, and should stay, a matter of faith, and I can fully respect the faith of the practitioners. It is when attempts are made to "prove" the truth of a religion by ersatz scientific means that my problems really begin. If the religous wish to enter the scientific arena, then they have to be prepared to submit their theories to the same degree of scientific strutiny as would be expected of any other. Better I feel if they stay with their faith.