Top critical review
7 people found this helpful
on 11 June 2012
Having read Dawkins' "The God Delusion" I was keen to read a theist's retort. After seeing several recommendations of this book I was keen to dive in. Sadly the arguments are so superficial that I struggled to find a reason for their inclusion in the book at all. The author often pokes fun at Richard Dawkins' and other prominent atheists' perceived sense of self importance, and dedicates several pages to highlighting their inflated egos, but these points are utterly irrelevant to the case for or against the existence of God. Even when the book does get into more meaningful theological arguments they are frankly rehashes of 'The argument from ignorance', 'The cosmological argument', and 'The sociological argument', all of which have been conclusively dismissed by the likes of Christopher Hitchens and Sam Harris. I was a little disappointed at how easily even someone such as myself was able to recognise the flaws and holes in the author's logic.
The 'Indulgent trash' I titled this review with is mainly spurred on by the title of the book "The Sceptic's guide to Atheism". The term 'sceptic' simply means you question a positive assertion. The positive assertion here is 'God exists'. Atheism is a rejection of this hypothesis due to a lack of evidence. Atheism makes no positive claims whatsoever itself other than that there is probably no god. The idea that atheism is its own belief system is a trap which many theists, including the author of this book, fall into when defending their own claims. The title "Sceptic's guide to atheism" only exemplifies the misguided views and false logic on which this book is based. It is sadly the same logic which a lot of beliefs themselves are based on, and it is why this book will onyl divid people further on the issue. This book will not convert anyone one way or the other, but will probably leave theists feeling a little smug while being ridiculed by logical thinkers.