The New Atheism
Taking a Stand for Science and Reason
Victor J. Stenger
In 2004, Sam Harris published The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason which became a major bestseller. This marked the first of a series of series of bestsellers that took a harder line against religion than has been the custom among secularists. Motivated by the atrocious event of September 11, 2001, which he laid directly at the feet of Islam, Harris did not leave Christianity or Judaism off the hook., nor did he pardon ‘religious moderates’.
In the year of 2006, the famed biologist and author Richard Dawkins published The God Delusion (2006), which stood in the New York Times best seller list for fifty one weeks. Dawkins’s message was clear – God is nothing but a delusion, and ‘You can be an atheist who is happy, balanced, moral, and intellectually fulfilled’.
In the same year Breaking the Spell: Religion as a Natural Phenomenon by Daniel C. Dennett (2006), God: The Failed Hypothesis. How Science Shows That God Goes Not Exist by Victor J. Stenger (2007), and God is not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything (2007) by Christoper Hitchens were published and the books were in the best seller list.
These authors have been recognized today as the leaders of a movement called New Atheism. The unexpected interest in New Atheism, as measured by book sales and much increased media attention, has driven Christian apologists to distraction. A whole raft of books has been published in response, largely from Christian publishing houses. Most are marked by shoddy scholarship (almost all of those I have sampled lack an index), misrepresentations of atheist views, and inaccurate quotations. None have sold anywhere near as well as the atheist books.
Victor Stenger dispels the resultant blizzard of lies and half-truths with great skill in his timely and accessible book. We all are in his debt.
–Sam Harris, The author of New York Times best sellers The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation
In The New Atheism, the latest book of Victor Stenger, reviewed and expanded upon the principles of New Atheism and answer many of its critics. He showed how naturalism, the view that everything is matter an nothing more, is sufficient to explain everything we observe in the universe from the most distant galaxies to the inner workings of the brain that result in the phenomenon of mind. Nowhere is it necessary to introduce God or the supernatural to understand the world. He disputed the claim that science has nothing to say about God and argues that absence of evidence is evidence of absence when evidence should be there and is not.
Victor Stenger eloquently reminds us that although the persuasive arguments against religious belief have existed for millennia, they are now strengthened and confirmed with the insights of modern physics and philosophy to such a degree that we are brought to a tipping point…. Stenger, with his affirming, incisive and illuminating observations, shows us that there is truly grandeur in taking a stand for something precious : Science and Reason.
– Dan Barker, The author of Godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America’s Leading Atheists
Prof Steger then detail many of the horrors and terrors it has produced over millennia and how this is all brought about by the belief in revelation. He showed in his book how the Bible is unable to solve the problem of unnecessary suffering in the world. He discussed the approach to suffering other in religions. He then show how all religions teach a common morality that is not divine but of natural, human origins.
Stenger’s combined expertise in physics and philosophy prove fatal to any pretense that theism is defensible or rational. The New Atheism is a clear and potent explanasion of why the old theism is no match for New Atheism
– Dr. Hector Avalos, Author of The End of Biblical Studies, and Professor of Iowa State University
Links to sample chapters in The New Atheism are provided below from Prof. Victor Stenger’s own web site
Slide show. PowerPoint.
We congratulate Prof Victor Stenger, the reputed physicist and honorary member of Mukto-Mona, for his ongoing success.