- Paperback: 382 pages
- Publisher: BookBaby; 1 edition (December 21, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0999513915
- ISBN-13: 978-0999513910
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 75 customer reviews
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#791,428 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- #333 in Philosophy of Good & Evil
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Atheism Kills: The Dangers of a World Without God – and Cause for Hope Paperback – December 21, 2017
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About the Author
Barak Lurie is a managing partner of the firm Lurie & Seltzer in Los Angeles, California. Barak obtained his BA with honors at Stanford University in 1985, and his JD and MBA at the UCLA School of Law and Anderson School of Business in 1989. He is the host of The Barak Lurie Show, a popular and riveting radio program heard Sunday mornings on AM870, KRLA in Los Angeles. He was born in Israel and serves on many pro-Christian and pro-Israel boards. Barak is a former atheist who turned to God after using logic, science, and probabilities. Barak pulls no punches as he makes the case for the existence of God―and shows the dangers of atheism. He beats down atheists with a club of reason, history, and science, and exposes atheists’ flawed assumptions. Barak’s many articles, podcasts, and speeches on atheism and its dangers have made him a declared and decorated champion of Christianity and Judaism, and their crucial roles in all the values we hold dear in Western civilization. Barak is a lover of God, America, and Israel, and an avid mountain biker and vegan. He and his wife Stacey have three children and live in Brentwood, California.
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Chapter 2 has a section "Argument For Atheism" which is brilliant (the only intelligent part of book). Then a section "Argument Against Atheism" that is idiotic, claiming that free will means doing whatever you want, you can ignore consequences, morality is absent if you're a rational person. Is this a grade-school essay with no knowledge of retaliation by peers or civil authority? Besides basic human morality that is inborn, adults know that there are consequences like beatings, shooting, stabbing, civil penalties and jail time--THAT is the deterrent to indiscriminate violence, not fear of divine retribution or morality learned from some religious scam. As Marina Diamandis lyrics say in "Savages"-- "I'm not afraid of God, I am afraid of Man".
But, the book is supposed to prove that atheism kills. His proof apparently is the same old junk science--dictators and blood thirsty monsters like Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Ho, Castro, Che, etc. They were born without morals (even if raised Catholic--Hitler, Castro, Che), but they had armies of men and citizens protecting them that were not atheists, I guarantee most were Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, etc. The problem is that belief in some ancient book like the Torah/Bible/Koran that portrays scenarios that nobody can defend and passages so ambiguous as to be interpreted a thousand different ways doesn't make you moral any more than not believing makes you immoral, or turn you into a Hitler.
What the author is trying to say, and takes forever making his point is: morality is impossible without Christianity or Judaism. That is just so juvenile and shallow and wrong that it doesn't deserve commenting on. Then, he blames atheism for everything the immoral power mad leaders do--juvenile, shallow, idiotic.
Christians destroyed unknown millions of natives in the Western hemisphere from 15th century on.
Christians enslaved millions of Africans and clergy supported them both in the North and South USA.
Spanish and American Christians killed unknown thousands of Philippinos in order to "civilize" them.
Did they do those atrocities because God told them to or allowed them to? Some may have, but most practiced slavery (or killed and robbed natives) for earthy pleasure and treasure, apparently morality is subjective.
Did "God" punish the Europeans or the slave owners? I see no evidence of divine intervention in all of human history, unless you count "acts of God" as divine intervention. An 'act of God' (hurricane, tornado, flood, fire, etc.) destroys lives and churches in the path no matter their belief system; atheist, Christian, Jew, Buddhist, whatever.
Did Hitler destroy only religious people? He destroyed ANYBODY that got in his way, but he singled out complete Jewish civilian families for gas chambers because he was raised Catholic and Catholics blamed Jews for the worlds ills. Plus, Christians and Muslims assisted (or at least stood aside, mostly) the German SS in their genocide.
The author glosses over the hundreds of thousands lives lost over seven centuries of Inquisitions over the world. He ignores untold hundreds of thousands of lives destroyed in England, Ireland, Scotland, and Europe over centuries of feuds between Catholics and Protestants.
This author tries to argue that the Bible shouldn't have been intimidating to the populace since there are no intimidating characters in it--so completely ridiculous. A 'God' that punishes "sins", a made-up scenario of an abusive afterlife, and church leaders that will burn to death infidels and heretics--THAT was intimidation. Until the printing press and general education of the masses, Christians and Jews ruled the Western world. Were the Middle Ages theocracies Utopian? NOT!! Ask Joan of Arc, or Mary Queen of Scots, or King Henry VIII's 2nd wife Anne Boleyn, or----.
As Richard Dawkins says "with or without religion, good people will do good, bad people will do bad, it takes religion to make good people do bad". THAT is pure genius. Read more Dawkins, people. Not mish-mash nonsense like this book.
Atheism doesn't kill, people kill for many reasons, some kill because their 'God' insists (Islam), or allows (Judaism) it.
Maybe instead of buying (or writing) books about how people who think differently than you are "killing" things, you could have a sense of togetherness, human brotherhood (you know, like the Bible mentions once or twice), and make friends with an atheist, or at least pick their brain a little. You might not agree about whether or not God exists, but I bet you're on the same page about soup kitchens and the basic value of human life and dignity. Why not save your money, and instead of giving it to hatred-stoking charlatans just out to make a quick buck off your fear of the Other, save that money and do something nice with it, like buying the meal of the person behind you in a drive-through or something.
Mr. Lurie is on firm ground when discussing the benefits of religion to western civilization. Sadly, I am not hopeful about the future. Mr. Lurie wisely sidesteps the issue of who is right, because either proposition requires faith, and is irrelevant to the author's premise. We can see the fall of civilization with the rise of modern atheism and Madalyn Murray O'Hair.