He critiques God in all his forms, from the sex-obsessed tyrant of the Old Testament to the more benign (but still illogical) Celestial Watchmaker favored by some Enlightenment thinkers. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the supreme improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry, and abuses children, buttressing his points with historical and contemporary evidence. In so doing, he makes a compelling case that belief in God is not just irrational, but potentially deadly.
Dawkins has fashioned an impassioned, rigorous rebuttal to religion, to be embraced by anyone who sputters at the inconsistencies and cruelties that riddle the Bible, bristles at the inanity of "intelligent design", or agonizes over fundamentalism in the Middle East or Middle America.
©2006 Richard Dawkins; (P)2006 Tantor Media, Inc.
"Richard Dawkins is the leading soothsayer of our time....The God Delusion continues his thought-provoking tradition." (J. Craig Venter, decoder of the human genome)
"The God Delusion is smart, compassionate, and true....If this book doesn't change the world, we're all screwed." (Penn & Teller)
"The world needs...passionate rationalists....Richard Dawkins so stands out through the cutting intelligence of The God Delusion." (James D. Watson, co-discoverer of DNA, author of The Double Helix)
I judge audiobooks on both content and narration - narration on this book was well done. It's more like an interesting lecture than a straight up reading of the book and I don't have a paper copy of the book to compare so it may well be a lecture instead of narration.
Content - I thoroughly enjoyed this book, but mark it down a bit in content because the author goes off on putting religious believers down a little too much. It's one thing to address their arguments, but making fun of them drops the case a bit. Although, for anyone concerned about it there's no hardcore "Christian bashing" - just a little "Can you believe they believe that stuff?" sort of thing.
I also think some of the arguments are as unfounded as the other side's. If you stick to pure logical arguments I don't think he does a good enough job proving that God doesn't exist. But to his credit - it IS a difficult task.
But overall it's a good listen and many of the arguments do hold true (like believing in an omniscient god because its safer than not believing then thinking that the god won't somehow know that you're only in it to save your skin being a little hypocritical).
All in all a good listen and I recommend it.
This is a good book for confirmed and closet atheists... and a good bait for religious people...
In this book, Dawkins does not expect to convert the truly religious, but hopes to nudge those sitting on the fence towards atheism. I think he will succeed in many cases.
I enjoy the author's enthusiasm, which is even more evident in this audio format. The dueling narration by Dawkins and his wife Lalla Ward works well. I found the quality of the audio and narration to be top notch.
Kids have imaginary friends. Adults have God.
Dawkins points out that religion may simply be a carryover from childhood's imaginary friends. Like adults, children need consolation and inspiration from imagined persons like the trinity and the saints. There is a strong emotional belief in these persons that causes rigidity of thought and has led to enormous harm to society in the form of bombed abortion clinics, and other acts of murder in the name of these imaginary friends. More heinous to Dawkins is inculcating in children a catechism of beliefs before they have critical faculties. This ensures the slavish and blind passage of belief across generations until, it is hoped, they are old enough to read this book.
Dawkins makes it clear that religion is irrational and inhumane. It treats people as passive receptacles not as thinking humans. The privileged social position of religion also means that believers are immunized against criticism and cannot be challenged without the challengers being dismissed as "ungodly".
The back and forth between the two narrators is very effective. Their speaking voices have the clear enunciation of Oxford English.
Overall, the book is a devastating critique of religion. I wish I had had this book for all those college dorm debates.
I am a person who knows logically that God can not exist in the way that religion has taught me. Yet, I still feel God in all things.
After listening to this book,I still feel God, but differently. Perhaps more importantly, I see more clearly the terrible threat that religion and "blind faith" poses for the future of humankind.
I HIGHLY recommend reading this book, whatever your faith may be. After all, mere words can not change the truth.
I enjoyed this volume and give it 4 stars because it has something to say, some real knowledge to offer, and some real history to teach, as opposed to most critical polemics of this type, it is funny, witty, but ruthless toward religious beliefs and practices, I love this book, and bought it for my girlfriend and my good friend, it is not for the faint hearted, certainly not for religious fundamentalists.
I had to say that, I would buy this book for everybody in the U.S. If I thought they would read it. I was already an Atheist when I read this book and I suspect that most of you who will read this are as well. Thats great you will love this book its a masterpeice. Just promise to give it to a Christian when your done.
Dawkin's book has helped me shape my thinking and made me feel more at ease with my long held belief that all religions are basically fairy tales, perpetuated by people who are more into power and money than righteousness and charity. Dawkins is far less cynical than I am, and his articulate and insightful defense of atheism is motivating to those who instinctively feel that religious teachings and behavior just don't make sense and that the hypocrisies contained in the bible and Koran are ludicrous. He makes a rational and balanced argument, and I, for one, was very impressed.
I did not like the narration method of this book which uses two readers who quickly interchange passages for no apparent reason. It detracts from the book's message and somehow makes it less credible and more gimmicky. Atheism is already open to enough criticism and ridicule. It would have been better, in my opinion, if the book was read solely by Dawkins, which would have added to the scholarly nature of the content.
Nonetheless, the content of Dawkin's writing far outweighs this minor issue. Very highly recommended.
This book is disturbing, really disturbing. Without any apology, Richard Dawkins will demonstrate you in 10 hours that there is no God. He will look at almost every facet of the problem and will carefully word his arguments showing impeccable logic. He will go over the intelligent design, morality, the need in a God, the scriptures. He will develop every argument and he will never jump to a conclusion. He will go as far as explaining why we should be intolerant of religious faith!
The problem is that after listening to his book 4 times, I don’t see any flaw in his arguments and I spent nights after nights researching his facts.
I guess I need to come out to my parents as an atheist now…. See what you did Mr. Dawkins!
I agree with many of the 2-4 star reviews, in particularly:
Reviewer: gacsaly, from Walnut Creek, CA, USA Date: December 31, 2006
Reviewer: Mike, from Houston, TX, USA Date: February 07, 2007
These two say it well, so here is something new.
I need to know why so many people believe in such an unnatural concept. Generally, if you leave things alone, they will grow organically. Let them be and they will reach their potential. The market, school choice, ANY choice for that matter will find its natural state if left alone.
So why then have we naturally evolved into a country where a majority believes in something so UNnatural? Why won't we think for ourselves? What are we afraid of?
This is the question I need answered in the next edition. Please help me understand what, in human nature, compels us to believe and trust with our lives that which can't be proven.
I am so grateful for audio books. I can quench my love for reading and still drive, run a half marathon, or do my household chores!
This book asked good questions and gave solid scientific rebuttal for each one. It was based science and biological processes that do well to explain the world. I began looking at people's words and actions in a different light; including my own.
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