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The Necessity of Atheism and Other Essays (The Freethought Library) Hardcover – June 1, 1993


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Product Details

  • Series: The Freethought Library
  • Hardcover: 95 pages
  • Publisher: Prometheus Books; 1St Edition edition (June 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0879757744
  • ISBN-13: 978-0879757748
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.6 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #486,922 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steven H Propp TOP 100 REVIEWER on July 31, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
Shelley's publication of "The Necessity of Atheism"---or rather, his refusal to repudiate it---resulted in his explusion from Oxford, and later in a falling-out with his father.

In the Essay on Christianity, he observes, "Jesus Christ would hardly have cited, as an example of all that is gentle and beneficent and compassionate, a Being who shall deliberately scheme to inflict on a large portion of the human race tortures indescribably intense and indefinitely protracted; who shall inflict them, too, without any mistake as to the true nature of pain---without any view to future good---merely because it is just."

In The Necessity of Atheism, he argues, "It is urged that man knows... that whatever is not eternal must have had a cause. When this reasoning is applied to the universe, it is necessary to prove that it was created: until that is clearly demonstrated we may reasonably suppose that it has endured from all eternity. We must prove design before we can infer a designer... it is easier to suppose that the universe has existed from all eternity than to conceive a being beyond its limits capable of creating it..." He adds, "this God is himself founded only on the authority of a few men who pretend to know him, and to come in his name and announce him on earth. A God made by man undoubtedly has need of man to make himself known to man."

He further states, "The all-powerful, should he not have more convincing means by which to show himself to man than these ridiculous metamorphoses, these pretended incarnations, which are attested by writers so little in agreement among themselves?... could he not convince the human mind in an instant of the things he wished to make known to it?..
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Steven H Propp TOP 100 REVIEWER on July 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Shelley's publication of "The Necessity of Atheism"---or rather, his refusal to repudiate it---resulted in his explusion from Oxford, and later in a falling-out with his father.

In the Essay on Christianity, he observes, "Jesus Christ would hardly have cited, as an example of all that is gentle and beneficent and compassionate, a Being who shall deliberately scheme to inflict on a large portion of the human race tortures indescribably intense and indefinitely protracted; who shall inflict them, too, without any mistake as to the true nature of pain---without any view to future good---merely because it is just."

In The Necessity of Atheism, he argues, "It is urged that man knows... that whatever is not eternal must have had a cause. When this reasoning is applied to the universe, it is necessary to prove that it was created: until that is clearly demonstrated we may reasonably suppose that it has endured from all eternity. We must prove design before we can infer a designer... it is easier to suppose that the universe has existed from all eternity than to conceive a being beyond its limits capable of creating it..." He adds, "this God is himself founded only on the authority of a few men who pretend to know him, and to come in his name and announce him on earth. A God made by man undoubtedly has need of man to make himself known to man."

He further states, "The all-powerful, should he not have more convincing means by which to show himself to man than these ridiculous metamorphoses, these pretended incarnations, which are attested by writers so little in agreement among themselves?... could he not convince the human mind in an instant of the things he wished to make known to it?..
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By Km! Ra on September 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautiful packaged but boring to read.
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By music lover on September 14, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am an atheist
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