October 17, 2006

The God Delusion

Posted in Religion, Theology at 2:08 am by egalitaria

God vs. the world: A subject I’ve not broached in a while, but need to brush off the dust from my Zacharias, Stott and Lewis to review Richard Dawkins’ new book called “The God Delusion”.

I’ve not read it myself, as it’s difficult as it is to locate his books in KL. Perhaps Malaysia has yet again arbitrarily imposed their views that we should not read any such material that allows people to question the existence of God or Allah. (This rings true of the 18 books that were recently banned from the country, including Karen Armstrong‘s celebrated book “The Battle for God: Fundamentalism in Judaism, Christianity and Islam”). I myself believe 200% in God, but also believe that people should be given the liberty to choose for themselves, based on information and opinions. (A good friend will jump up to say “is belief a choice??”, a separate debate we will not go into yet).

I can only look at some extracts from the book available online here. Some of which read:

There are two ways in which scripture might be a source of morals or rules for living. One is by direct instruction, for example through the Ten Commandments, which are the subject of such bitter contention in the culture wars of America’s boondocks. The other is by example: God, or some other biblical character, might serve as – to use the contemporary jargon – a role model. Both scriptural routes, if followed through religiously (the adverb is used in its metaphoric sense but with an eye to its origin), encourage a system of morals which any civilized modern person, whether religious or not, would find – I can put it no more gently – obnoxious.

From what I’ve read, his arguments are basically similar to many of previous evolutionists, who have made the same points. The same words come across your mind, secularist, evolutionist, scientist, rationalist, facts not fiction, logic and reason, microbiology, atheist, and the list goes on. I hope, perhaps, that this new book sheds some new light in relation to current day issues, explaining for modern human behavioural patterns based on a belief in God. This sounds much like Sam Harris’ “The End of Faith”, but better written and more clearly thought through. I’ve blogged about my thoughts on evolution and creationism previously here. Will hunt down the book and do some digesting. Should do more of this than spend time pondering the sorry state of politics in the country – may not be worth my time after all.

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10 Comments

  1. Hedonese said,

    Wow, seems more like a job for Nancey Pearcey, William Lane Craig and Chuck Colson 😀

  2. Leonkj said,

    Seriously, how seriously can we take a guy who calls us containers for selfish geenes. I dont know, even evolutionist distance themselves somewhat from Dawkins. I reccomend Francis Collins, the Language of God as better counter material.

  3. Leonkj said,

    By the way, whats the smiley at the bottom of this page for?

  4. Observer said,

    I watched the 9.5 minutes interview on YouTube. The author’s aim was to change the mind of some believers to become a non-believer.
    I wonder how could an agnostic find God unless God reveal himself …

  5. Observer said,

    talked about evolution.
    I found this interesting view from Catholic:

    Benedict’s evolving thought on evolution
    http://ncronline.org/NCR_Online/archives2/2006c/090806/090806h.php

  6. Sivin said,

    I would recommend Alister McGrath’s Excellent lectures and response to Richard Dawkins here Has Science Elimnated God.

  7. Alex Tang said,

    Dawkins fails to convince in this book. He easily brush aside Aquinas’ argument for God as based on flimsy evidence, yet he uses the theory of evolution to support his own thesis; which is God, intelligent design etc are a delusion.

    This book is a thinly disguished attack on monotheistic religions, quite unbecoming of an Oxford biologist.

  8. Observer said,

    check this one:
    Beyond Belief (book review: The God Delusion)
    http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/22/books/review/Holt.t.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all

  9. meursault said,

    I too am trying to find this book. But even before reading it, I can more or less guess its contents. I guess it is targeted for the religious lot, rather than those like myself.

    But do let everyone know, if you’ve successfully located the book in KL.

  10. Hedonese said,

    Yup predictable stuffs, meursault, they should really update their arguments if they expect to change things a bit 🙂

    Here’s another good resource:
    http://www.citychurchsf.org/openforum.htm


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