50 Voices of Disbelief. Why We Are Atheists by Russell Blackford

By Russell Blackford

50 Voices of Disbelief: Why we're Atheists presents a suite of unique essays drawn from a global crew of in demand voices within the fields of academia, technology, literature, media and politics who provide conscientiously thought of statements of why they're atheists.

  • Features a very overseas forged of participants, starting from public intellectuals reminiscent of Peter Singer, Susan Blackmore, and A.C. Grayling, novelists, equivalent to Joe Haldeman, and heavyweight philosophers of faith, together with Graham Oppy and Michael Tooley
  • Contributions diversity from rigorous philosophical arguments to hugely own, even whimsical, debts of ways each one of those amazing thinkers have come to reject faith of their lives
  • Likely to have huge charm given the present public fascination with spiritual matters and the reception of such books as The God Delusion and The finish of Faith

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Extra info for 50 Voices of Disbelief. Why We Are Atheists

Example text

I wanted to understand the world and begged my mother for a set of encyclopedias. Fulfilling that request was not easy for her. She was a single woman working as a waitress rearing three children without any child support. The two-year encyclopedia payment plan was the greatest investment my mother ever made. She knew that those books were needed to improve our education. She was right. The day the World Book Encyclopedia volumes arrived, I made a vow to read them from A to Z. That was when I discovered the difference between mythology and reality.

But then, how do we “know” God is omnipotent, or eternal? We don’t. It’s just that the monotheist God is supposed to have certain attributes that make it a significant grown-up sophisticated God, better than the frivolous or greedy or quarrelsome gods like Kali or Loki or Athena. (Oddly, this does leave room for one particular: we do “know” that God is male. ) We don’t know that God is omnipotent, we simply assume that anyone called God has to be omnipotent, because that’s part of the definition, and we know that God is called God, so therefore God must be omnipotent.

Only five years earlier, I had witnessed my mother and her siblings praying for work, food, and clothes. They were first-generation immigrants and did not speak English well. Jobs were hard to find and we were very poor. I concluded at a very young age that God does not make things possible – hard work and determination do. Working was better than praying and at age 10 I started sewing to earn money. I never wasted time on my knees praying to a god. I used my talents and time to earn income and contributed what I could to improve the plight of our family.

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