Popular Atheism Books

30+ [Hand Picked] Popular Books On Atheism

Discover the list of some best books written on Atheism by popular award winning authors. These book on topic Atheism highly popular among the readers worldwide.

5/5

Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion by Sam Harris

For the millions of Americans who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’s new book is a guide to meditation as a rational spiritual practice informed by neuroscience and psychology. From multiple New York Times bestselling author, neuroscientist, and “new atheist” Sam Harris, Waking Up is for the 30 percent of Americans who follow no religion, but who suspect that For the millions of Americans who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’s new book is a guide to meditation as a rational spiritual practice informed by neuroscience and psychology. From multiple New York Times bestselling author, neuroscientist, and “new atheist” Sam Harris, Waking Up is for the 30 percent of Americans who follow no religion, but who suspect that Jesus, Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history could not have all been epileptics, schizophrenics, or frauds. Throughout the book, Harris argues that there are important truths to be found in the experiences of such contemplatives—and, therefore, that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow. Waking Up is part seeker’s memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris—a scientist, philosopher, and famous skeptic—could write it.

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3.9/5

How Jesus Became God: The Exaltation of a Jewish Preacher from Galilee by Bart D. Ehrman

New York Times bestselling author and Bible expert Bart Ehrman reveals how Jesus’s divinity became dogma in the first few centuries of the early church. The claim at the heart of the Christian faith is that Jesus of Nazareth was, and is, God. But this is not what the original disciples believed during Jesus’s lifetime—and it is not what Jesus claimed about himself. How Jesu New York Times bestselling author and Bible expert Bart Ehrman reveals how Jesus’s divinity became dogma in the first few centuries of the early church. The claim at the heart of the Christian faith is that Jesus of Nazareth was, and is, God. But this is not what the original disciples believed during Jesus’s lifetime—and it is not what Jesus claimed about himself. How Jesus Became God tells the story of an idea that shaped Christianity, and of the evolution of a belief that looked very different in the fourth century than it did in the first. A master explainer of Christian history, texts, and traditions, Ehrman reveals how an apocalyptic prophet from the backwaters of rural Galilee crucified for crimes against the state came to be thought of as equal with the one God Almighty, Creator of all things. But how did he move from being a Jewish prophet to being God? In a book that took eight years to research and write, Ehrman sketches Jesus’s transformation from a human prophet to the Son of God exalted to divine status at his resurrection. Only when some of Jesus’s followers had visions of him after his death—alive again—did anyone come to think that he, the prophet from Galilee, had become God. And what they meant by that was not at all what people mean today. Written for secular historians of religion and believers alike, How Jesus Became God will engage anyone interested in the historical developments that led to the affirmation at the heart of Christianity: Jesus was, and is, God.

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4.4/5

Something Other than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It by Jennifer Fulwiler

Jennifer Fulwiler told herself she was happy. Why wouldn't she be? She made good money as a programmer at a hot tech start-up, had just married a guy with a stack of Ivy League degrees, and lived in a twenty-first-floor condo where she could sip sauvignon blanc while watching the sun set behind the hills of Austin. Raised in a happy, atheist home, Jennifer had the freedom Jennifer Fulwiler told herself she was happy. Why wouldn't she be? She made good money as a programmer at a hot tech start-up, had just married a guy with a stack of Ivy League degrees, and lived in a twenty-first-floor condo where she could sip sauvignon blanc while watching the sun set behind the hills of Austin. Raised in a happy, atheist home, Jennifer had the freedom to think for herself and play by her own rules. Yet a creeping darkness followed her all of her life. Finally, one winter night, it drove her to the edge of her balcony, making her ask once and for all why anything mattered. At that moment everything she knew and believed was shattered. Asking the unflinching questions about life and death, good and evil, led Jennifer to Christianity, the religion she had reviled since she was an awkward, sceptical child growing up in the Bible Belt. Mortified by this turn of events, she hid her quest from everyone except her husband, concealing religious books in opaque bags as if they were porn and locking herself in public bathroom stalls to read the Bible. Just when Jennifer had a profound epiphany that gave her the courage to convert, she was diagnosed with a life-threatening medical condition--and the only treatment was directly at odds with the doctrines of her new-found faith. Something Other Than God is a poignant, profound and often funny tale of one woman who set out to find the meaning of life and discovered that true happiness sometimes requires losing it all.

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4.3/5

The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe: How to Know What's Really Real in a World Increasingly Full of Fake by Steven Novella

An all-encompassing guide to skeptical thinking in the popular "The Skeptics Guide to the Universe" podcast's dryly humorous, accessible style. It's intimidating to realize that we live in a world overflowing with misinformation, bias, myths, deception, and flawed knowledge. There really are no ultimate authority figures-no one has the secret and there is no place to look u An all-encompassing guide to skeptical thinking in the popular "The Skeptics Guide to the Universe" podcast's dryly humorous, accessible style. It's intimidating to realize that we live in a world overflowing with misinformation, bias, myths, deception, and flawed knowledge. There really are no ultimate authority figures-no one has the secret and there is no place to look up the definitive answers to our questions (not even Google). But, by thinking skeptically and logically, we can combat sloppy reasoning, bad arguments and superstitious thinking. It's difficult, and takes a lot of vigilance, but it's worth the effort. In this tie-in to their incredibly popular "The Skeptics Guide to the Universe" podcast, Steven Novella, MD along with "Skeptical Rogues" Bob Novella, Cara Santa Maria, Jay Novella, and Evan Bernstein will explain the tenets of skeptical thinking and debunk some of the biggest scientific myths, fallacies and conspiracy theories (Anti-vaccines, homeopathy, UFO sightings, etc.) They'll help us try to make sense of what seems like an increasingly crazy world using powerful tools like science and philosophy. THE SKEPTICS' GUIDE TO THE UNIVERSE is your guide through this maze of modern life. It covers essential critical thinking skills, as well as giving insight into how your brain works and how to avoid common pitfalls in thinking. They discuss the difference between science and pseudoscience, how to recognize common science news tropes, how to discuss conspiracy theories with that crazy coworker of yours, and how to apply all of this to everyday life. So, are you ready to join them on an epic scientific quest, one that has taken us from huddling in dark caves to stepping foot on the Moon? (Yes, we really did that.) Like all adventures, this one is foremost a journey of self discovery. The monsters you will slay and challenges you will face are mostly constructs of your own mind. With the SKEPTIC'S GUIDE TO THE UNIVERSE, we can do this together.

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4.9/5

1000 Lashes: Because I Say What I Think by Raif Badawi

"Raif Badawi's is an important voice for all of us to hear, mild, nuanced, but clear. His examination of his culture is perceptive and rigorous. Of course he must be saved from the dreadful sentence against him and the appalling conditions of his imprisonment. But he must also be read, so that we understand the struggle within Islam between suffocating orthodoxy and free e "Raif Badawi's is an important voice for all of us to hear, mild, nuanced, but clear. His examination of his culture is perceptive and rigorous. Of course he must be saved from the dreadful sentence against him and the appalling conditions of his imprisonment. But he must also be read, so that we understand the struggle within Islam between suffocating orthodoxy and free expression, and make sure we find ourselves on the right side of that struggle.” —Salman Rushdie The pivotal texts of Raif Badawi, the liberal Saudi Arabian blogger arrested for blogging about free speech, and sentenced to 1000 lashes and 10 years in prison on charges related to accusations that he insulted Islam on his blog. Raif Badawi, a Saudi Arabian blogger, shared his thoughts on politics, religion, and liberalism online. He was sentenced to 1,000 lashes, ten years in prison, and a fine of around $315,000. This politically topical polemic gathers together Badawi’s pivotal texts. He expresses his opinions on life in an autocratic-Islamic state under the Sharia and his perception of freedom of expression, human and civil rights, tolerance and the necessary separation of state and religion.

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3.7/5

Brief Candle in the Dark: My Life in Science by Richard Dawkins

In this hugely entertaining sequel to the New York Times bestselling memoir An Appetite for Wonder, Richard Dawkins delves deeply into his intellectual life spent kick-starting new conversations about science, culture, and religion and writing yet another of the most audacious and widely read books of the twentieth century—The God Delusion. Called “one of the best nonfictio In this hugely entertaining sequel to the New York Times bestselling memoir An Appetite for Wonder, Richard Dawkins delves deeply into his intellectual life spent kick-starting new conversations about science, culture, and religion and writing yet another of the most audacious and widely read books of the twentieth century—The God Delusion. Called “one of the best nonfiction writers alive today” (Stephen Pinker) and a “prize-fighter” (Nature), Richard Dawkins cheerfully, mischievously, looks back on a lifetime of tireless intellectual adventure and engagement. Exploring the halls of intellectual inquiry and stardom he encountered after the publication of his seminal work, The Selfish Gene; affectionately lampooning the world of academia, publishing, and television; and studding the pages with funny stories about the great men and women he’s known, Dawkins offers a candid look at the events and ideas that encouraged him to shift his attention to the intersection of culture, religion, and science. He also invites the reader to look more closely at the brilliant succession of ten influential books that grew naturally out of his busy life, highlighting the ideas that connect them and excavating their origins. On the publication of his tenth book, the smash hit, The God Delusion, a “resounding trumpet blast for truth” (Matt Ridley), Richard Dawkins was catapulted from mere intellectual stardom into a circle of celebrity thinkers dubbed, “The New Atheists”—including Christopher Hitchens, Sam Harris, and Daniel Dennett. Throughout A Brief Candle in the Dark, Dawkins shares with us his infectious sense of wonder at the natural world, his enjoyment of the absurdities of human interaction, and his bracing awareness of life’s brevity: all of which have made a deep imprint on our culture.

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3.9/5

Science in the Soul: Selected Writings of a Passionate Rationalist by Richard Dawkins

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The legendary biologist and bestselling author mounts a timely and passionate defense of science and clear thinking with this career-spanning collection of essays, including twenty pieces published in the United States for the first time. For decades, Richard Dawkins has been a brilliant scientific communicator, consistently illuminating the wond NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER - The legendary biologist and bestselling author mounts a timely and passionate defense of science and clear thinking with this career-spanning collection of essays, including twenty pieces published in the United States for the first time. For decades, Richard Dawkins has been a brilliant scientific communicator, consistently illuminating the wonders of nature and attacking faulty logic. Science in the Soul brings together forty-two essays, polemics, and paeans--all written with Dawkins's characteristic erudition, remorseless wit, and unjaded awe of the natural world. Though it spans three decades, this book couldn't be more timely or more urgent. Elected officials have opened the floodgates to prejudices that have for half a century been unacceptable or at least undercover. In a passionate introduction, Dawkins calls on us to insist that reason take center stage and that gut feelings, even when they don't represent the stirred dark waters of xenophobia, misogyny, or other blind prejudice, should stay out of the voting booth. And in the essays themselves, newly annotated by the author, he investigates a number of issues, including the importance of empirical evidence, and decries bad science, religion in the schools, and climate-change deniers. Dawkins has equal ardor for "the sacred truth of nature" and renders here with typical virtuosity the glories and complexities of the natural world. Woven into an exploration of the vastness of geological time, for instance, is the peculiar history of the giant tortoises and the sea turtles--whose journeys between water and land tell us a deeper story about evolution. At this moment, when so many highly placed people still question the fact of evolution, Dawkins asks what Darwin would make of his own legacy--"a mixture of exhilaration and exasperation"--and celebrates science as possessing many of religion's virtues--"explanation, consolation, and uplift"--without its detriments of superstition and prejudice. In a world grown irrational and hostile to facts, Science in the Soul is an essential collection by an indispensable author. Praise for Science in the Soul "Compelling . . . rendered in gloriously spiky and opinionated prose . . . [Dawkins is] one of the great science popularizers of the last half-century."--The Christian Science Monitor "Dawkins is a ferocious polemicist, a defender of reason and enemy of superstition."--John Horgan, Scientific American

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3.9/5

Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation by Bill Nye

Sparked by a provocative comment to BigThink.com last fall, and fueled by a highly controversial debate with Creation Museum curator Ken Ham, Bill Nye's campaign to confront the scientific shortcoming of creationism has exploded in just a few months into a national crusade. In this book, he expands the points he has made, and claims that this debate is not so much about re Sparked by a provocative comment to BigThink.com last fall, and fueled by a highly controversial debate with Creation Museum curator Ken Ham, Bill Nye's campaign to confront the scientific shortcoming of creationism has exploded in just a few months into a national crusade. In this book, he expands the points he has made, and claims that this debate is not so much about religion versus science, as about the nature of science itself. With infectious enthusiasm, he reveals the mechanics of evolutionary theory, explains how it is rooted in the testable and verifiable scientific method, and why it is therefore a sound explanation of our beginning. He argues passionately that to continue to assert otherwise, to continue to insist that creationism has a place in the science classroom is harmful not only to our children, but to the future of the greater world as well.

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4.7/5

Fighting God: An Atheist Manifesto for a Religious World by David Silverman , Cara Santa Maria (Foreword)

Fighting God is a firebrand manifesto from one of the most recognizable faces of atheism. In his book, Silverman-a walking, talking atheist billboard known for his appearances on Fox News-discusses the effectiveness, ethics and impact of the in-your-face-atheist who refuses to be silent. Silverman argues that religion is more than just wrong: it is malevolent and does not d Fighting God is a firebrand manifesto from one of the most recognizable faces of atheism. In his book, Silverman-a walking, talking atheist billboard known for his appearances on Fox News-discusses the effectiveness, ethics and impact of the in-your-face-atheist who refuses to be silent. Silverman argues that religion is more than just wrong: it is malevolent and does not deserve our respect. It is our duty to be outspoken and do what we can to bring religion down. Examining the mentality, methods and issues facing the firebrand atheist, Silverman presents an overwhelming argument for firebrand atheism and reveals: - All religion is cafeteria religion and almost all agnostics are atheists. - American society grants religion a privileged status, despite the intentions of the Founding Fathers. - Christian politicians have adversely (and un-Constitutionally) affected our society with regard to science, health, women's rights, and gay rights. - The notion of "atheist Jews" is a lie forced on us by religion. - It is not "Islamophobia" to observe dangerous teachings and disproportionate violence in Islam. - Atheists are slowly but surely winning the battle. Fighting God is a provocative, unapologetic book that takes religion to task and will give inspiration to non-believers and serve as the ultimate answer to apologists.

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3.4/5

Why There Is No God: Simple Responses to 20 Common Arguments for the Existence of God by Armin Navabi , Nicki Hise (Editor)

• "Science can't explain the complexity and order of life; God must have designed it to be this way." • "God's existence is proven by scripture." • "There's no evidence that God doesn't exist." • "God has helped me so much. How could none of it be true?" • "Atheism has killed more people than religion, so it must be wrong!" How many times have you heard arguments like thes • "Science can't explain the complexity and order of life; God must have designed it to be this way." • "God's existence is proven by scripture." • "There's no evidence that God doesn't exist." • "God has helped me so much. How could none of it be true?" • "Atheism has killed more people than religion, so it must be wrong!" How many times have you heard arguments like these for why God exists? Why There Is No God provides simple, easy-to-understand counterpoints to the most popular arguments made for the existence of God. Each chapter presents a concise explanation of the argument, followed by a response illustrating the problems and fallacies inherent in it. Whether you're an atheist, a believer or undecided, this book offers a solid foundation for building your own inquiry about the concept of God.

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4.4/5

Bad Faith: When Religious Belief Undermines Modern Medicine by Paul A. Offit

In recent years, there have been major outbreaks of whooping cough among children in California, mumps in New York, and measles in Ohio's Amish country—despite the fact that these are all vaccine-preventable diseases. Although America is the most medically advanced place in the world, many people disregard modern medicine in favor of using their faith to fight life threate In recent years, there have been major outbreaks of whooping cough among children in California, mumps in New York, and measles in Ohio's Amish country—despite the fact that these are all vaccine-preventable diseases. Although America is the most medically advanced place in the world, many people disregard modern medicine in favor of using their faith to fight life threatening illnesses. Christian Scientists pray for healing instead of going to the doctor, Jehovah's Witnesses refuse blood transfusions, and ultra-Orthodox Jewish mohels spread herpes by using a primitive ritual to clean the wound. Tragically, children suffer and die every year from treatable diseases, and in most states it is legal for parents to deny their children care for religious reasons. In twenty-first century America, how could this be happening? In Bad Faith, acclaimed physician and author Dr. Paul Offit gives readers a never-before-seen look into the minds of those who choose to medically martyr themselves, or their children, in the name of religion. Offit chronicles the stories of these faithful and their children, whose devastating experiences highlight the tangled relationship between religion and medicine in America. Religious or not, this issue reaches everyone—whether you are seeking treatment at a Catholic hospital or trying to keep your kids safe from diseases spread by their unvaccinated peers. Replete with vivid storytelling and complex, compelling characters, Bad Faith makes a strenuous case that denying medicine to children in the name of religion isn't just unwise and immoral, but a rejection of the very best aspects of what belief itself has to offer.

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3.5/5

The Bible in a Nutshell by Casper Rigsby , Carol Engelhaupt (Editor) , Allie Jackson (Editor) , Aiden Seanachaidh (Illustrator)

If you've ever read the whole Bible, you are well aware of just how big this book is. With an estimated word count of well over 700,000 words, the book is not an undertaking for the casual reader. The book can be a very tedious and boring read. This turns many people off from wanting to commit any time to understanding the foundational doctrine of Christianity. However, as If you've ever read the whole Bible, you are well aware of just how big this book is. With an estimated word count of well over 700,000 words, the book is not an undertaking for the casual reader. The book can be a very tedious and boring read. This turns many people off from wanting to commit any time to understanding the foundational doctrine of Christianity. However, as atheists we really need to have at least a basic understanding of the Bible if we are going to make a judgment call about the religion. No matter which sect of Christianity someone subscribes to, the Bible is the foundation of Christian belief. This book is a mere 7,000 words to tell a slimmed down version of the basic story of the Bible. This book focused on the narrative rather than any underlying allegory or metaphor inherent in the narrative. The author attempts to challenge the notion of biblical literalism by showing that the story in its most basic form is simply too fantastic for any rational person to believe.

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3.5/5

The Reason Revolution: Atheism, Secular Humanism, and the Collapse of Religion by Dan Dana

This short book, only 8,000 finely crafted words, is destined to be one of the most cited and influential modern treatises on atheism and secular humanism. It focuses squarely on the inherent irrationality of religion, and reveals its utter irreconcilability with science. Offering several "reconciliation theories" to people of faith, it forces every reader to make a choice This short book, only 8,000 finely crafted words, is destined to be one of the most cited and influential modern treatises on atheism and secular humanism. It focuses squarely on the inherent irrationality of religion, and reveals its utter irreconcilability with science. Offering several "reconciliation theories" to people of faith, it forces every reader to make a choice. Contents The Reason Revolution in historical context Questioning belief Reasons for skepticism Secular humanism as an alternative worldview Political implications of atheism The collapse of religion Hopeful predictions Reconciliation theories Comments by clergy Call to action

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4.3/5

The Atheist Muslim: A Journey from Religion to Reason by Ali A. Rizvi

In much of the Muslim world, religion is the central foundation upon which family, community, morality, and identity are built. The inextricable embedment of religion in Muslim culture has forced a new generation of non-believing Muslims to face the heavy costs of abandoning their parents’ religion: disowned by their families, marginalized from their communities, imprisone In much of the Muslim world, religion is the central foundation upon which family, community, morality, and identity are built. The inextricable embedment of religion in Muslim culture has forced a new generation of non-believing Muslims to face the heavy costs of abandoning their parents’ religion: disowned by their families, marginalized from their communities, imprisoned, or even sentenced to death by their governments. Struggling to reconcile the Muslim society he was living in as a scientist and physician and the religion he was being raised in, Ali A. Rizvi eventually loses his faith. Discovering that he is not alone in his beliefs, he moves to North America and promises to use his new freedom of speech to represent the voices that are usually quashed before reaching the mainstream media―the Atheist Muslim. In The Atheist Muslim, we follow Rizvi as he finds himself caught between two narrative voices he cannot relate to: extreme Islam and anti-Muslim bigotry in a post-9/11 world. The Atheist Muslim recounts the journey that allows Rizvi to criticize Islam―as one should be able to criticize any set of ideas―without demonizing his entire people. Emotionally and intellectually compelling, his personal story outlines the challenges of modern Islam and the factors that could help lead it toward a substantive, progressive reformation.

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3.6/5

Jesus: Mything in Action, Vol. I (The Complete Heretic's Guide to Western Religion Book 2) by David Fitzgerald

About the book: David Fitzgerald’s award-winning 2010 book Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed At All pointed out the top ten fatal flaws of Christianity’s origin story. Now, Jesus: Mything in Action presents the most compelling new findings in Jesus Myth theory and critically examines its controversial reception by biblical scholars, the extent and r About the book: David Fitzgerald’s award-winning 2010 book Nailed: Ten Christian Myths That Show Jesus Never Existed At All pointed out the top ten fatal flaws of Christianity’s origin story. Now, Jesus: Mything in Action presents the most compelling new findings in Jesus Myth theory and critically examines its controversial reception by biblical scholars, the extent and reliability of our sources for Jesus, and reveals the surprising history behind Jesus’ evolution. In this volume: Mything in Action, vol. I (chapters 1 – 12) looks at the myths of Jesus Mythicism: what it is and isn’t; what biblical scholars are saying about it (and why); and examines our oldest “biographical” source for Jesus – the allegorical story we know as the Gospel of Mark.

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3.9/5

The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins

A preeminent scientist -- and the world's most prominent atheist -- asserts the irrationality of belief in God and the grievous harm religion has inflicted on society, from the Crusades to 9/11. With rigor and wit, Dawkins examines 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 A preeminent scientist -- and the world's most prominent atheist -- asserts the irrationality of belief in God and the grievous harm religion has inflicted on society, from the Crusades to 9/11. With rigor and wit, Dawkins examines 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. The God Delusion makes a compelling case that belief in God is not just wrong but potentially deadly. It also offers exhilarating insight into the advantages of atheism to the individual and society, not the least of which is a clearer, truer appreciation of the universe's wonders than any faith could ever muster.

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3/5

God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens

Hitchens frames the argument for a more secular life based on science and reason, in which hell is replaced by the Hubble Telescope's awesome view of the universe, and Moses and the burning bush give way to the beauty and symmetry of the double helix. In the tradition of Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not a Christian and Sam Harris's recent bestseller, The End of Faith, Christ Hitchens frames the argument for a more secular life based on science and reason, in which hell is replaced by the Hubble Telescope's awesome view of the universe, and Moses and the burning bush give way to the beauty and symmetry of the double helix. In the tradition of Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not a Christian and Sam Harris's recent bestseller, The End of Faith, Christopher Hitchens makes the ultimate case against religion. With a close and erudite reading of the major religious texts, he documents the ways in which religion is a man-made wish, a cause of dangerous sexual repression, and a distortion of our origins in the cosmos. With eloquent clarity, Hitchens frames the argument for a more secular life based on science and reason, in which hell is replaced by the Hubble Telescope's awesome view of the universe, and Moses and the burning bush give way to the beauty and symmetry of the double helix.

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3.1/5

The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason by Sam Harris

In The End of Faith, Sam Harris delivers a startling analysis of the clash between reason and religion in the modern world. He offers a vivid, historical tour of our willingness to suspend reason in favor of religious beliefs—even when these beliefs inspire the worst human atrocities. While warning against the encroachment of organized religion into world politics, Harris In The End of Faith, Sam Harris delivers a startling analysis of the clash between reason and religion in the modern world. He offers a vivid, historical tour of our willingness to suspend reason in favor of religious beliefs—even when these beliefs inspire the worst human atrocities. While warning against the encroachment of organized religion into world politics, Harris draws on insights from neuroscience, philosophy, and Eastern mysticism to deliver a call for a truly modern foundation for ethics and spirituality that is both secular and humanistic. Winner of the 2005 PEN/Martha Albrand Award for Nonfiction.

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4.5/5

Letter to a Christian Nation by Sam Harris

In response to The End of Faith, Sam Harris received thousands of letters from Christians excoriating him for not believing in God. Letter to A Christian Nation is his reply. Using rational argument, Harris offers a measured refutation of the beliefs that form the core of fundamentalist Christianity. In the course of his argument, he addresses current topics ranging from i In response to The End of Faith, Sam Harris received thousands of letters from Christians excoriating him for not believing in God. Letter to A Christian Nation is his reply. Using rational argument, Harris offers a measured refutation of the beliefs that form the core of fundamentalist Christianity. In the course of his argument, he addresses current topics ranging from intelligent design and stem-cell research to the connections between religion and violence. In Letter to a Christian Nation, Sam Harris boldly challenges the influence that faith has on public life in our nation.

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4.5/5

The Portable Atheist: Essential Readings for the Nonbeliever by Christopher Hitchens (Editor) , Lucretius (Contributor) , Omar Khayyám (Contributor) , Thomas Hobbes (Contributor) , Baruch Spinoza (Contributor) , David Hume (Contributor) , James Boswe

From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of God Is Not Great, a provocative and entertaining guided tour of atheist and agnostic thought through the ages with never-before-published pieces by Salman Rushdie, Ian McEwan, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Christopher Hitchens continues to make the case for a splendidly godless universe in this first-ever gathering of the influentia From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of God Is Not Great, a provocative and entertaining guided tour of atheist and agnostic thought through the ages with never-before-published pieces by Salman Rushdie, Ian McEwan, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Christopher Hitchens continues to make the case for a splendidly godless universe in this first-ever gathering of the influential voices--past and present--that have shaped his side of the current (and raging) God/no-god debate. With Hitchens as your erudite and witty guide, you'll be led through a wealth of philosophy, literature, and scientific inquiry, including generous portions of the words of Lucretius, Benedict de Spinoza, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, Mark Twain, George Eliot, Bertrand Russell, Emma Goldman, H. L. Mencken, Albert Einstein, Daniel Dennett, Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and many others well-known and lesser known. And they're all set in context and commented upon as only Christopher Hitchens political and literary journalist extraordinaire can.” (Los Angeles Times) Atheist? Believer? Uncertain? No matter: The Portable Atheist will speak to you and engage you every step of the way.

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3.1/5

Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon by Daniel C. Dennett

An innovative thinker tackles the controversial question of why we believe in God and how religion shapes our lives and our future. For a growing number of people, there is nothing more important than religion. It is an integral part of their marriage, child rearing, and community. In this daring new book, distinguished philosopher Daniel C. Dennett takes a hard look at thi An innovative thinker tackles the controversial question of why we believe in God and how religion shapes our lives and our future. For a growing number of people, there is nothing more important than religion. It is an integral part of their marriage, child rearing, and community. In this daring new book, distinguished philosopher Daniel C. Dennett takes a hard look at this phenomenon and asks why. Where does our devotion to God come from and what purpose does it serve? Is religion a blind evolutionary compulsion or a rational choice? In "Breaking the Spell," Dennett argues that the time has come to shed the light of science on the fundamental questions of faith. In a spirited narrative that ranges widely through history, philosophy, and psychology, Dennett explores how organized religion evolved from folk beliefs and why it is such a potent force today. Deftly and lucidly, he contends that the "belief in belief" has fogged any attempt to rationally consider the existence of God and the relationship between divinity and human need. "Breaking the Spell" is not an antireligious screed but rather an eyeopening exploration of the role that belief plays in our lives, our interactions, and our country. With the gulf between rationalists and adherents of "intelligent design" widening daily, Dennett has written a timely and provocative book that will be read and passionately debated by believers and nonbelievers alike.

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3.3/5

Why I Am Not a Christian and Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects by Bertrand Russell , Paul Edwards (Editor)

Dedicated as few men have been to the life of reason, Bertrand Russell has always been concerned with the basic questions to which religion also addresses itself -- questions about man's place in the universe and the nature of the good life, questions that involve life after death, morality, freedom, education, and sexual ethics. He brings to his treatment of these questio Dedicated as few men have been to the life of reason, Bertrand Russell has always been concerned with the basic questions to which religion also addresses itself -- questions about man's place in the universe and the nature of the good life, questions that involve life after death, morality, freedom, education, and sexual ethics. He brings to his treatment of these questions the same courage, scrupulous logic, and lofty wisdom for which his other work as philosopher, writer, and teacher has been famous. These qualities make the essays included in this book perhaps the most graceful and moving presentation of the freethinker's position since the days of Hume and Voltaire. "I am as firmly convinced that religions do harm as I am that they are untrue," Russell declares in his Preface, and his reasoned opposition to any system or dogma which he feels may shackle man's mind runs through all the essays in this book, whether they were written as early as 1899 or as late as 1954. The book has been edited, with Lord Russell's full approval and cooperation, by Professor Paul Edwards of the Philosophy Department of New York University. In an Appendix, Professor Edwards contributes a full account of the highly controversial "Bertrand Russell Case" of 1940, in which Russell was judicially declared "unfit" to teach philosophy at the College of the City of New York. Whether the reader shares or rejects Bertrand Russell's views, he will find this book an invigorating challenge to set notions, a masterly statement of a philosophical position, and a pure joy to read.

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3.4/5

Godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists by Dan Barker , Richard Dawkins (Foreword)

ADVANCE PRAISE FOR GODLESS “Valuable in the human story are the reflections of intelligent and ethical people who listen to the voice of reason and who allow it to vanquish bigotry and superstition. This book is a classic example.” —CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS author of God is Not Great “The most eloquent witness of internal delusion that I know—a triumphantly smiling refugee from t ADVANCE PRAISE FOR GODLESS “Valuable in the human story are the reflections of intelligent and ethical people who listen to the voice of reason and who allow it to vanquish bigotry and superstition. This book is a classic example.” —CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS author of God is Not Great “The most eloquent witness of internal delusion that I know—a triumphantly smiling refugee from the zany, surreal world of American fundamentalist Protestantism—is Dan Barker.” —RICHARD DAWKINS author of The God Delusion “Godless was a revelation to me. I don’t think anyone can match the (devastating!) clarity, intensity, and honesty which Dan Barker brings to the journey—faith to reason, childhood to growing up, fantasy to reality, intoxication to sobriety.” —OLIVER SACKS authors of Musicophilia In Godless, Barker recounts his journey from evangelical preacher to atheist activist, and along the way explains precisely why it is not only okay to be an atheist, it is something in which to be proud.” —MICHAEL SHERMER publisher of Skeptic Magazine “Godless is a fascinating memoir and a handbook for debunking theism. But most of all, it is a moving testimonial to one man’s emotional and intellectual rigor in acclaiming critical thinking.” —ROBERT SAPOLSKY author of Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers

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4.5/5

God: The Failed Hypothesis: How Science Shows That God Does Not Exist by Victor J. Stenger

Throughout history, arguments for and against the existence of God have been largely confined to philosophy and theology. In the meantime, science has sat on the sidelines and quietly watched this game of words march up and down the field. Despite the fact that science has revolutionized every aspect of human life and greatly clarified our understanding of the world, someh Throughout history, arguments for and against the existence of God have been largely confined to philosophy and theology. In the meantime, science has sat on the sidelines and quietly watched this game of words march up and down the field. Despite the fact that science has revolutionized every aspect of human life and greatly clarified our understanding of the world, somehow the notion has arisen that it has nothing to say about the possibility of a supreme being, which much of humanity worships as the source of all reality. Physicist Victor J. Stenger contends that, if God exists, some evidence for this existence should be detectable by scientific means, especially considering the central role that God is alleged to play in the operation of the universe and the lives of humans. Treating the traditional God concept, as conventionally presented in the Judeo-Christian and Islamic traditions, like any other scientific hypothesis, Stenger examines all of the claims made for God's existence. He considers the latest Intelligent Design arguments as evidence of God's influence in biology. He looks at human behavior for evidence of immaterial souls and the possible effects of prayer. He discusses the findings of physics and astronomy in weighing the suggestions that the universe is the work of a creator and that humans are God's special creation. After evaluating all the scientific evidence, Stenger concludes that beyond a reasonable doubt the universe and life appear exactly as we might expect if there were no God.

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4.6/5

The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values by Sam Harris

Sam Harris' first book, The End of Faith, ignited a worldwide debate about the validity of religion. In the aftermath, Harris discovered that most people - from religious fundamentalists to non-believing scientists - agree on one point: science has nothing to say on the subject of human values. Indeed, our failure to address questions of meaning and morality through scienc Sam Harris' first book, The End of Faith, ignited a worldwide debate about the validity of religion. In the aftermath, Harris discovered that most people - from religious fundamentalists to non-believing scientists - agree on one point: science has nothing to say on the subject of human values. Indeed, our failure to address questions of meaning and morality through science has now become the most common justification for religious faith. It is also the primary reason why so many secularists and religious moderates feel obligated to "respect" the hardened superstitions of their more devout neighbors. In this explosive new book, Sam Harris tears down the wall between scientific facts and human values, arguing that most people are simply mistaken about the relationship between morality and the rest of human knowledge. Harris urges us to think about morality in terms of human and animal well-being, viewing the experiences of conscious creatures as peaks and valleys on a "moral landscape." Because there are definite facts to be known about where we fall on this landscape, Harris foresees a time when science will no longer limit itself to merely describing what people do in the name of "morality"; in principle, science should be able to tell us what we ought to do to live the best lives possible. Bringing a fresh perspective to age-old questions of right and wrong and good and evil, Harris demonstrates that we already know enough about the human brain and its relationship to events in the world to say that there are right and wrong answers to the most pressing questions of human life. Because such answers exist, moral relativism is simply false - and comes at increasing cost to humanity. And the intrusions of religion into the sphere of human values can be finally repelled: for just as there is no such thing as Christian physics or Muslim algebra, there can be no Christian or Muslim morality. Using his expertise in philosophy and neuroscience, along with his experience on the front lines of our "culture wars," Harris delivers a game-changing book about the future of science and about the real basis of human cooperation.

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3.3/5

The Demon-Haunted World: Science as a Candle in the Dark by Carl Sagan , Ann Druyan

How can we make intelligent decisions about our increasingly technology-driven lives if we don’t understand the difference between the myths of pseudoscience and the testable hypotheses of science? Pulitzer Prize-winning author and distinguished astronomer Carl Sagan argues that scientific thinking is critical not only to the pursuit of truth but to the very well-being of How can we make intelligent decisions about our increasingly technology-driven lives if we don’t understand the difference between the myths of pseudoscience and the testable hypotheses of science? Pulitzer Prize-winning author and distinguished astronomer Carl Sagan argues that scientific thinking is critical not only to the pursuit of truth but to the very well-being of our democratic institutions. Casting a wide net through history and culture, Sagan examines and authoritatively debunks such celebrated fallacies of the past as witchcraft, faith healing, demons, and UFOs. And yet, disturbingly, in today's so-called information age, pseudoscience is burgeoning with stories of alien abduction, channeling past lives, and communal hallucinations commanding growing attention and respect. As Sagan demonstrates with lucid eloquence, the siren song of unreason is not just a cultural wrong turn but a dangerous plunge into darkness that threatens our most basic freedoms.

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3.7/5

Atheist Universe: The Thinking Person's Answer to Christian Fundamentalism by David Mills , Dorion Sagan (Foreword)

Clear, concise, and persuasive, Atheist Universe details exactly why God is unnecessary to explain the universe and life's diversity, organization, and beauty. The author thoroughly rebuts every argument that claims to "prove" God's existence - arguments based on logic, common sense, philosophy, ethics, history, and science. Atheist Universe avoids the esoteric language use Clear, concise, and persuasive, Atheist Universe details exactly why God is unnecessary to explain the universe and life's diversity, organization, and beauty. The author thoroughly rebuts every argument that claims to "prove" God's existence - arguments based on logic, common sense, philosophy, ethics, history, and science. Atheist Universe avoids the esoteric language used by philosophers and presents its scientific evidence in simple lay terms, making it a richly entertaining and easy-to-read introduction to atheism. A comprehensive primer, it addresses all the historical and scientific questions, including: Is there proof that God does not exist? What evidence is there of Jesus' resurrection? Can creation science reconcile scripture with the latest scientific discoveries? Atheist Universe also answers ethical issues such as: What is the meaning of life without God? It's a spellbinding inquiry that ultimately arrives at a controversial and well-documented conclusion. Other important questions answered in this book: * What, precisely, is atheism, and why is it misunderstood so thoroughly? * If God is a myth, then did the universe appear from nothing? * Does the meticulous clockwork of planetary motion result from mindless random forces? * Do atheists believe that human beings evolved through blind accident from lifeless matter? * Do the splendor and intricacy of life on Earth reveal evidence of intelligent design by a supernatural Creator? * Can atheists prove that God does not exist? * What about Creation Science, and the popular new movement to reconcile Scripture and science? * Have recent scientific discoveries pointed to God's governance of the cosmos? * Did Albert Einstein believe in God? * Does the fact that energy cannot be destroyed lend credibility to a belief in eternal life? * Without God, can there be a valid system of ethics or an objective "right" and "wrong"? * Does religion encourage moral conduct and civilized behavior? Is the Golden Rule really such a bad idea? * What is the meaning of life without God? * When we die, are we simply dead like dogs? * Did atheists suffer a trauma in childhood that warped them into blasphemous rebellion? * Because of ubiquitous injustice on Earth, is an afterlife required to redress the imbalance, where evil is ultimately punished and virtue rewarded? * Is atheism just another crackpot religion? * What's the harm in a person's private spirituality? Does humanity have everything to gain, and nothing to lose, through belief in God (even if He's only imaginary)? * Apart from the Bible, is there secular historical evidence of Jesus' miracles and resurrection? * How do atheists explain "near death" experiences and medical miracles which amaze even skeptical doctors? * Why should a tiny minority of atheists be able to force their opinions on everyone else by banning prayer in public schools? * Since "there are no atheists in foxholes," have famous nonbelievers recanted on their deathbeds? * Did Old and New Testament prophecies correctly predict events which actually unfolded during our own lifetimes? * What about the Shroud of Turin and the discovery of wood fragments from Noah's Ark on Mount Ararat in Turkey? * Does the Law of Entropy (or the "running down" of the universe) contradict evolutionary theory, which asserts that Nature's complexity is increasing? * Is there absolute proof that man evolved from a lower form of life? * Even if you believe that all life evolved from a single cell, how could complex cellular life originate without a Creator? * Is atheism a totally negative philosophy, leading only to cynicism and despair? * Does communism's past embrace of atheism prove that atheism is an evil and failed philosophy? * Was America really founded upon Christian principles by Christian believers? * What is the true, behind-the-scenes relationship between politics and religion in 21st-century America? All of these questions - and hundreds of others - are fully confronted and methodically answered in the riveting pages of Atheist Universe.

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4.6/5

Atheism: The Case Against God by George H. Smith

Does a god exist? This question has undoubtedly been asked, in one form or another, since man has had the ability to communicate. . . Thousands of volumes have been written on the subject of a god, and the vast majority have answered the questions with a resounding 'Yes!' " "You are about to read a minority viewpoint." With this intriguing introduction, George H. Smith sets Does a god exist? This question has undoubtedly been asked, in one form or another, since man has had the ability to communicate. . . Thousands of volumes have been written on the subject of a god, and the vast majority have answered the questions with a resounding 'Yes!' " "You are about to read a minority viewpoint." With this intriguing introduction, George H. Smith sets out to demolish what he considers the most widespread and destructive of all the myths devised by man - the concept of a supreme being. With painstaking scholarship and rigorous arguments, Mr. Smith examines, dissects, and refutes the myriad "proofs" offered by theists - the defenses of sophisticated, professional theologians, as well as the average religious layman. He explores the historical and psychological havoc wrought by religion in general - and concludes that religious belief cannot have any place in the life of modern, rational man. "It is not my purpose to convert people to atheism . . . (but to) demonstrate that the belief in God is irrational to the point of absurdity. If a person wishes to continue believing in a god, that is his prerogative, but he can no longer excuse his belief in the name of reason and moral necessity.

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3.3/5

The Greatest Show on Earth: The Evidence for Evolution by Richard Dawkins

Charles Darwin’s masterpiece, On the Origin of Species, shook society to its core on publication in 1859. Darwin was only too aware of the storm his theory of evolution would provoke but he would surely have raised an incredulous eyebrow at the controversy still raging a century and a half later. Evolution is accepted as scientific fact by all reputable scientists and inde Charles Darwin’s masterpiece, On the Origin of Species, shook society to its core on publication in 1859. Darwin was only too aware of the storm his theory of evolution would provoke but he would surely have raised an incredulous eyebrow at the controversy still raging a century and a half later. Evolution is accepted as scientific fact by all reputable scientists and indeed theologians, yet millions of people continue to question its veracity. In The Greatest Show on Earth Richard Dawkins takes on creationists, including followers of ‘Intelligent Design’ and all those who question the fact of evolution through natural selection. Like a detective arriving on the scene of a crime, he sifts through fascinating layers of scientific facts and disciplines to build a cast-iron case: from the living examples of natural selection in birds and insects; the ‘time clocks’ of trees and radioactive dating that calibrate a timescale for evolution; the fossil record and the traces of our earliest ancestors; to confirmation from molecular biology and genetics. All of this, and much more, bears witness to the truth of evolution. The Greatest Show on Earth comes at a critical time: systematic opposition to the fact of evolution is now flourishing as never before, especially in America. In Britain and elsewhere in the world, teachers witness insidious attempts to undermine the status of science in their classrooms. Richard Dawkins provides unequivocal evidence that boldly and comprehensively rebuts such nonsense. At the same time he shares with us his palpable love of the natural world and the essential role that science plays in its interpretation. Written with elegance, wit and passion, it is hard-hitting, absorbing and totally convincing.

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3.6/5

God, No! Signs You May Already Be an Atheist and Other Magical Tales by Penn Jillette

A scathingly funny reinterpretation of the Ten Commandments from the larger, louder half of world-famous magic duo Penn and Teller reveals an atheist's experience in the world: from performing on the Vegas strip with Siegfried and Roy to children and fatherhood to his ongoing dialogue with proselytizers of the Christian Right and the joys of sex while scuba-diving, Penn ha A scathingly funny reinterpretation of the Ten Commandments from the larger, louder half of world-famous magic duo Penn and Teller reveals an atheist's experience in the world: from performing on the Vegas strip with Siegfried and Roy to children and fatherhood to his ongoing dialogue with proselytizers of the Christian Right and the joys of sex while scuba-diving, Penn has an outrageous sense of humor and a brilliantly entertaining opinion on, well, anything you care to think of.

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