March 13, 2020 0 Comments

Atheist Delusions has ratings and reviews. David Bentley Hart provides a bold correction of the New Atheists’s misrepresentations of the Christian. Atheist Delusions: The Christian Revolution and Its Fashionable Enemies is a book by the theologian, philosopher, and cultural commentator David Bentley Hart. The book explores what Hart identifies as historical and popular. The New Atheist thing seems to be moribund at the moment, although the half- corpse sometimes twitches. But that may paradoxically make this.

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What really was the difference?

I was frustrated with the book in the early pages because it made a lot of assertions without offering evidence. But whatever the case, Hart’s rhetoric is perfect for laying out the new atheists.

Hart closes the book in the present, delineating the ominous consequences of the decline of Christendom in a culture that is built upon its moral and spiritual values. This is not a light read! Rejecting “religion” as an unmitigated evil would lead to the incomprehensible but it seems rapidly approaching condition of looking at the world as one giant playground of biological machines, subject to nothing more than their mutual and collective wills.

The book is a defense of Christianity, not in the narrow theological apologetic sense, but against the broader societal narrative that Christianity has been a negative influence through history e.

Review: Atheist Delusions – Science on Religion

And perhaps there are works of his where it is just part of the jargon of doing philosophy in our world. It’s not impossible to picture a Christian or for that matter Islamic theocracy that is an improvement upon our present circumstances, but I wouldn’t atjeist to take that gamble and would prefer to fight to preserve truth and goodness within a secular context.

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Clearly the interaction between church and violence, church and science is not nearly as clear cut as many want to make it out to be. Hart also responds to objections such as: This is a very good historical survey worked around solid orthodox Theology, and very helpful on the terms the author has for it.

But this can be true for other arguments too. There was no rooting for the underdog, no narrative of redemption and rebirth. Hart’s argument is that Christianity has been one of the world’s greatest revolutions—shaping the very nature of our lives. Trivia About Atheist Delusions But I think he does a superb job of deconstructing the shallow and wooly thinking of the new fundamentalist atheists. Book ratings by Goodreads.

In short, this was a vastly encouraging book, not so much because I have been much swayed by the arguments of the New Atheists, but because of the erudite and loving description of the checkered history of Christianity that illumines how Western history in all of its glory and shame is depended on the energy that the Christian Revolution inspired.


Hart’s argument is that Christianity has been one of The book’s title might be delusikns little more polemical than necessary, in that it is less about refutations specifically of many of the New Atheist movement’s most vocal supporters although, Hart does address “The Four Horsemen” and some of their works occasionally and more a historical “defense” of Christianity and the undoubtable effect it has had on the world.

But it is here that deljsions important can be said against the “New Atheists. Hart evinces the erudition and knowledge of both a classical philosophical and the One thing that immediately jumps out at me upon reading this book is what an intellectual mismatch David Bentley Hart is with the “New Atheist” philosophers yart our contemporary popular culture.

That is a given when one reads David Bentley Hart. Jul 08, Eric rated it it was amazing Shelves: Definitely worth the read, but also definitely disappointing, especially after such a fun start to the book. Christians were cruel to leapers, Christians burned books, Christians burned the library of Alexandria, Christians where anti-science, Christians burned witches and were intellectually mad, Christians lead to the holy wars, etc.

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Review: David Bentley Hart, “Atheist Delusions”

What we gain, then, over centuries of a culture imbued with this charity — despite all the many failures of the institutional church and of particular Christians — are the abolition of slavery, hospitals, advances in medicine, human rights, innumerable charitable organisations, love of the unlovely, justice for the unjust, and more.

He makes some interesting and no doubt valid points including that the witch hunts were not nearly as bad as is imagined and that the church actually tended to suppress them rather encourage them; he takes on the myth that Galileo was mercilessly and unfairly persecuted by scientifically illiterate and even anti-science churchmen, and so forth.

He is not simply saying “Christianity has done a lot of good to the world; therefore, you need to belive,”–that would be a variant of the genetic fallacy that Hart so masterfully refutes. David Hart is one of America’s sharpest minds, and this is Hart in full, all guns firing and the band playing on the deck.

There’s nothing wrong with that, but the arrogance that comes through for the “New Atheist” project does grow tiresome that’s not to say the “New Atheists” can’t be guilty of arrogance too. One thing he does particularly entertainingly is torch the pasted-together “spiritualism” of secular modernity, a partly consumerist phenomenon that seeks to put together bits of old pagan beliefs with a few concepts here and there taken from Buddhism.


Maybe that’s my limitation rather than Hart’s, but it did hamper my enjoyment of the book. Hart takes on some of the prevailing themes in the popular New Atheist literature including the idea that religion has been a primary source of misery throughout history and that its effects were only mitigated as the chains of superstition were thrown off with the scientific revolution and enlightenment.

Despite its polemical title, this book contains interesting information both for Christians and non-christians. Secular concepts such as “human rights” would be incomprehensible without concepts which are themselves borne out of and inextricably tied to Christianity. Check out the top books of the year on our page Best Books of The great cloud that hangs over the final chapters is: In it, Hart responds in minute detail to historical criticisms, some that are widely repeated e.

All human beings, finite and changeable and weak and powerless, are of infinite value, beloved by the infinite God: Curiously enough, we never seem to step back and reflect upon the significance of this fact. This is much different than the classical conception of freedom which was freedom from the desire to commit sin, or to act against ones best nature.

Open Preview See a Problem? I love the section where he speaks about modern society having forsaken reason for magic and being in danger of slipping back into barbarism.

His approach is subtle but at times profound, generally very fair and even handed, though sullied sporadically by an arrogance or flippancy.

Atheist Delusions : The Christian Revolution and Its Fashionable Enemies

I came to this website thinking I would find progressive opinions on topics of religion Indeed, most of us don’t actually manage to fully live like this and many of us are either still believers in God in some manner or otherwise we find distractions pursuit of wealth, nationalism to fill the cavernous void that the public ztheist of religion has opened up.

Aug 04, Jacob Aitken rated it liked it. This is a brilliant rebuttal to some of the more popular anti-religious, anti-Christian polemics making the rounds these days ie: By using our website you agree to our use of cookies. Nov 23, Marc rated it liked it.