Whether you're a lifelong believer, a devout atheist, or someone who remains uncertain about the role of religion in our lives, this insightful manifesto will engage you with its provocative ideas.
With a close and studied reading of the major religious texts, Christopher Hitchens 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.
In the tradition of Bertrand Russell's Why I Am Not a Christian and Sam Harris's The End of Faith, Christopher Hitchens makes the ultimate case against religion.
Hitchens, one of our great political pugilists, delivers the best of the recent rash of atheist manifestos. The same contrarian spirit that makes him delightful reading as a political commentator, even (or especially) when he's completely wrong, makes him an entertaining huckster prosecutor once he has God placed in the dock. And can he turn a phrase!: "monotheistic religion is a plagiarism of a plagiarism of a hearsay of a hearsay, of an illusion of an illusion, extending all the way back to a fabrication of a few nonevents." Hitchens's one-liners bear the marks of considerable sparring practice with believers. Yet few believers will recognize themselves as Hitchens associates all of them for all time with the worst of history's theocratic and inquisitional moments. All the same, this is salutary reading as a means of culling believers' weaker arguments: that faith offers comfort (false comfort is none at all), or has provided a historical hedge against fascism (it mostly hasn't), or that "Eastern" religions are better (nope). The book's real strength is Hitchens's on-the-ground glimpses of religion's worst face in various war zones and isolated despotic regimes. But its weakness is its almost fanatical insistence that religion poisons "everything," which tips over into barely disguised misanthropy.
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Not For Believers
This is an excellent work, but it is outright contemptible of religion and so I could not recommend it for those that still have faith. However, for those that have already cast of the shackles of religious faith, this book is a must read. It will find yourself much better equipped to defend your non-belief to those that would question you.
Hitchens finds himself within the realm of reality when he recognizes that religion will always exist, and the need to fight against it.
Many of the negative reviews are obviously written by brainwashes Christians who have not read the book and do no intend to but will continue to spew mythological rhetoric. Sorry I actually read this book and really enjoyed it. If you really have questions this may not be the answer but the path to more questions that need to be asked.
I have seen the light!
I have seen the light and it's not from god or any other deity it is from the shining light of this man's genius. Finally I have found someone who believes like I do. Thank you for writing this book it makes me feel better about being an atheist.