Tuesday, January 22, 2013

John W. Loftus reviews God Doesn't; We Do

John Loftus, author of many excellent books I heartily encourage (not least Why I Became an Atheist, which I put on my list of four must-read books for everyone who really wants to understand Christianity and why we should reject its claims as untrue), has done me a great kindness in taking the time to read my own book, God Doesn't; We Do, and has put a review on his blog Debunking Christianity, review: "Lindsay's Book Delivers the Goods with Both Knowledge and Passion".

John writes:
If I were to write a blurb for Dr. James A. Lindsay’s God Doesn't; We Do: Only Humans Can Solve Human Challenges it would be,
This book offers a passionate and erudite set of important challenges to people of faith, complete with a nice touch of humor and a sense of urgency that we don’t see often in similar books by intellectuals. In it most readers will find some fresh arguments that provoke thought and deserve our attention. Unlike the four "New Atheists" Lindsay, who holds degrees in physics and a Ph.D. in mathematics, understands Christian theology much better than they do. In the end, Lindsay is correct; God doesn’t do anything because he doesn’t exist. Only we can solve our problems.
Personally, I'm not only honored to read what John (who is in some ways one of my heroes for his incredible commitment and thorough, clear writing) has to say about my work in such glowing terms, I'm also tickled to find out what his (and other people's) favorite parts of the book are. John notes this as well:
I especially liked his chapter 7, "The Problem of a Silent God." That this is a huge problem for people of faith cannot be overstated, and Lindsay is an expert guide through it.
That means that so far, of the four people who have told me which chapter they like best, I have four different answers: Chapter 4: "Defining God," Chapter 7: "The Problem of a Silent God," Chapter 10: "Spirituality without God," and Chapter 11: "What is Wrong with Moderate Faith?" Different strokes for different folks, they say, and I'm glad to have written something that appeals to such diverse interests (I actually wrote more originally but cut out chapters on history and science because the book is already quite long enough).

Now, I'm excited enough about this kind review to want to quote the entire thing, but I won't do that--go to Debunking Christianity and read it for yourself. John includes a number of quotations from the book in the review to make his points, so if you have been interested in seeing more of a preview of it than I've put out here so far, now's a great chance to see what someone else thinks is worth remarking upon.

I will, however, close with John's closing commentary, which is quite kind. He writes:
He writes well. He argues well. And he has a passion born out of an urgency to debunk religion like few other intellectuals. This is a book that every atheist should get and read. It will arm them and hopefully motivate them to help change the religious landscape like we aim to do.
Perhaps of all I read there, it's nicest to have felt understood.

For those interested, do consider John's new book, which is to be released quite soon: The Outsider Test for Faith: How to Know Which Religion Is True. The Outsider Test for Faith, which appears in brief in Why I Became an Atheist, is a true tour de force for analyzing the validity of religious claims (hint: not valid). The Test, if it gets the credit and recognition it deserves, should work essentially as a bulldozer to clear away any claims that religions are believed because they are "true," which should force us all to look at religious claims in a new way--one that is heavily colored by compassion as I consider it more and more.


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If you enjoy my writing, you can read more of it in my first book, God Doesn't; We Do: Only Humans Can Solve Human Challenges. If you choose to pick it up, I thank you for your support of myself, my family, and indie authors in general.

2 comments:

  1. Too bad you decided to pick Loftus for a reviewer - His arguments are so flawed, and his writing terrible, other than that, good on you - I agree humankind should solve their own problems, and not wait for some deity to save them.

    Again, too bad you had Loftus review it, otherwise I would be interested in reading it - but if he says it's good, then I have severe doubts, sorry.

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    1. You're sorry? Don't think so, not actually. Sucks to miss out on things by your own prejudices, though, I guess.

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