The Devil's Delusion: Atheism and its Scientific Pretensions Paperback – Sep 22 2009
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"Berlinski knows his science and wields his rapier deftly. He makes great sport with his opponents, and his readers will surely enjoy it."
--Tom Bethell, bestselling author of "The Politically Incorrect Guide to Science
"A powerful riposte to atheist mockery and cocksure science, and to the sort of philosophy that surrenders to them. David Berlinski proceeds reasonably and calmly to challenge recent scientific theorizing and to expose the unreason from which it presumes to criticize religion."
--Harvey Mansfield, Professor of Government, Harvard University
"Berlinski's book is everything desirable: it is idiomatic, profound, brilliantly polemical, amusing, and of course vastly learned. I congratulate him."
--William F. Buckley Jr.
"With high style and light-hearted disdain, David Berlinski deflates the intellectual pretensions of the scientific atheist crowd. Maybe they can recite the Periodic Table by heart, but the secular Berlinski shows that this doesn't get them very far in reasoning about much weightier matters."
--Michael J. Behe, Professor of Biological Sciences, Lehigh University, bestselling author of "Darwin's Black Box "and "The Edge of Evolution"
"David Berlinski plus any topic equals an extraordinary book."
"From the Hardcover edition."
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Top Customer Reviews
And oh my, what an incendiary and provocative landmark it turns out to be.
With Baconian pithiness and singular authority, Berlinski--a Princeton Ph.D who has taught mathematics and philosophy at universities in the U.S. and France--pillories the intelligentsia's new-found faith in atheistic scientism as shallow and exclusionary. "Like any militant church," he says, "this one places a familiar demand before all others: Thou shall not have any other gods before me."
Writing as a highly respected member of the scientific élite, Berlinski nevertheless sets out to puncture the conceit that science, as the single belief system that rational humans can place their faith in, is a "narrow and oppressive orthodoxy" that regards religious belief with "frivolous contempt."
To interdict an I-know-where-this-is-coming-from reaction, BerlinskI sets down, on his first page, the "inconvenient fact" that he is "a secular Jew [whose] religious education did not take"--adding, however, that his book is a defence of religious thought and sentiment "because none has been forthcoming." Here, obviously, is a man given to a sense of fair play.Read more ›
The author considers the onslaught on religious belief as an attempt to establish science as the single secular religion in which rational people ought to place their faith. Science has made the world more mysterious than ever before, argues Berlinski, since we now know more about what we do not know & have never understood. As science progressed, so did the mysteries that it cannot explain. To mention a few, the following questions have no naturalistic answers: (a) Where existence came from; (b) The origin of life, consciousness & morality; (c) The fine-tuning of the universe that makes human life possible. No convincing answers exist among the plethora of speculation.
Berlinski values the great physical theories as treasures of knowledge while emphasizing that they cannot answer the questions raised by theology and do not offer a coherent view of the universe. By raising apposite issues, he turns the scientific community's skepticism on itself. Does a rigid and oppressive orthodoxy of thought dominate the sciences? Are scientists prepared to believe in anything as long as religious thought is avoided? Did the secular ideologies of the terrible 20th century have an overall beneficial or evil effect?Read more ›
It's funny how what we call militant atheism is actually a guise for the more common complaint about the sloppy thinking of this group. Their bigots, and they don't like this book because it exposes that.
Most recent customer reviews
Once again Dawkins brilliant The God Delusion has hit a nerve. This author has used pseudoscience or simply ignores the science of evolution in this pathetic attempt at dismantling... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Steve
Here is a Real scientist! David Berlinski does not appear to be motivated by Money, power, or titles, but Facts. Read morePublished on Feb. 1 2014 by Francisco segura
This was really good. David Berlinski is a self-described secular Jew, but not a very good one in my estimation - he sounded more convinced of the reality of the God of Scripture... Read morePublished on June 3 2013 by D Glover
Anyone who would like a fair minded look at pseudo-scientific punditry posing as progressive thought ought to give this book a shot. Read morePublished on March 7 2012 by The Source
From the opening chapter it is clear the Author doesn't really have a fundamental understanding of atheism or science. Read morePublished on Dec 2 2011 by R. S.
One cannot help but be attracted to David Berlinski's "The Devil's Delusion". It is very well written: extremely compact in its argumentation, coherent, entertaining and at times,... Read morePublished on Sept. 1 2011 by SnowPharoah
Clear, cogent, and comical. A must read for anyone who loves science and seeks to be intellectually honest. Berlinski's style is engaging, sarcastic and just plain funny!Published on Aug. 29 2011 by Jason
I read this in one day, it was great. I actually laughed out loud twice. David Berlinski has a wonderfully intelligent sense of humor. His position is spot on. Read morePublished on June 3 2011 by JoeJensen