The Divine Reality: God, Islam & the Mirage of Atheism Kindle Edition
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I'll admit, couple of chapters in this book do tend to get a bit philosophical and may not be for every reader but they all serve a purpose. Highly recommended for both believers and who don't believe in any thing... this may change your perspective.
A little background info on why I purchased this book: Over the years, I've followed the debates of Hamza Tzortzis with fellow atheist academics and have admired brother Hamza's admirable approach to the defense of this beautiful religion and way of life. His character in debates speaks volumes for his compassion for fellow human beings and his sincerity and humbleness in wishing for people to be guided to the truth. He is not one to raise his voice to outspeak or interrupt another, nor is he rude in his demeanor, even when others lack a positive attitude. I've always received the impression that when he speaks, it could come from no other place than his heart. Of course, he isn't perfect as he's slipped up in manner here and there, but we are only human.
I say all of this not to elevate him to a position of praise, but to introduce the author and give my impressions that I had of him, even before he decided to author his first book (which is this one). It is my own personal opinion that an author's truthfulness and integrity should be weighed, along with their intelligence, before someone commits to buying a person's work and supporting them. And it's upon seeing and analyzing brother Hamza over the years that has brought me to purchase his first publication.
Anyway, after following his debates, having read a good amount of his articles from his website and learning much, I was surprised and excited when I found out from his Twitter page that he's authoring this book. So I bought a copy.
Having taken about 4-5 days to read through it, I was left very impressed and ready to read through it for a 2nd time. Hamza's coherency and reason in his arguments for God's existence/Islam and why atheism lacks a foundation to stand upon has always been solid in his debates, and having collected, organized, transposed, and polished those arguments into this book (while adding a number of others I've never heard him use), he's taken those already solid arguments and raised their efficacy level to quite a sublime degree.
I can't think of the amount of times I would come across an argument in a particular chapter, saying to myself, "Man... that makes a whole lotta sense." That's a testament to the quality of the arguments as a whole. Each argument is able to stand on its own feet, without really having to rely upon another, and yet at the same time, the flow from one chapter to the next, from one argument to the next just.... works! It is far from being organized in a haphazardly manner; on the contrary, the chapters and arguments contained within them seem to be organized in such a way that it would make perfect sense if that was considered the defacto structure to be used when debating an atheist on such a subject of theism vs atheism!
I think it's only fair that those who are contemplating purchasing this book, know beforehand the subjects that are covered within. Below is the table of contents:
Preface - My Journey
Chapter 1- Atheism: Its Definition, History & Growth
Chapter 2- Life Without God: The Implications of Atheism
Chapter 3- Adversaries of Reason: Why Atheism is Irrational
Chapter 4- Self-Evident: Why Atheism is Unnatural
Chapter 5- A Universe from Nothing? The Qur'an's Argument for God
Chapter 6- The Divine Link: The Argument from Dependency
Chapter 7- Denying God, Denying You: The Argument from Conciousness
Chapter 8- Divine Precision: The Designed Universe
Chapter 9- Know God, Know Good: God & Objective Morality
Chapter 10- Divine Singularity: The Oneness of God
Chapter 11- Is God Merciful: Islam's Response to the Problem of Evil & Suffering
Chapter 12- Has Science Disproved God? Deconstructing False Atheist Assumptions
Chapter 13- God's Testimony: The Divine Authorship of the Qur'an
Chapter 14- The Prophetic Truth: The Messenger of God
Chapter 15- The Free Slave: Why God is Worthy of Our Worship
Chapter 16- Conclusion: Transforming Our Hearts
Afterword- Don't Hate, Debate: Dialogue With Islam
--- You can even see the logical flow of the chapters from merely the titles, that's how well put-together and assembled the book is. Also, I appreciate how the author uses examples and illustrations to make it easier for the layman reader to understand the arguments he presents, or to recognize why a counter-argument doesn't make sense. Of course, no book is perfect aside from Al-Qur'an. This book contains its share of typos, some more significant than others, however it detracts very minimally from its quality. However, where it really counts in terms of providing a rational basis for why it makes perfect sense to believe in an All-Powerful, All-Knowing, Eterrnal, Most-Merciful, Most-Loving, Unique Creator, why Islam must be from such a Creator, and why atheism should be rejected, could not have been executed with better precision (in my opinion).
Those are my thoughts. Thanks for reading my review!
*P.S. I have spoken with the author personally, and he has been kind enough to respond to a question of mine, telling me that he will be releasing new editions of this book as time goes on, adding relevant content or amending accordingly to keep it up-to-date as the contemporary discussion of such a subject develops over the years.*
Hamza Tzortzis has written a phenomenal book, a book which contains over 500 references is testament to the time, effort and research that has gone into it. The book covers several new arguments such as the argument from rationality, which highlights that our ability to reason, to understand and think in a logical way to see conclusions and to attain truth only makes sense through Allah. Without God all you have are blind random physical processes which cannot possibly result in an ordered mind that can grasp truth. The author goes into allot more detail in the book breaking down key contentions that can be presented against these arguments.
After reading this book you can clearly see Hamza Tzortzis has really refined himself and is much more academic and balanced following his post graduate studies. This is a must read book for all Muslims and atheists alike, not only does it build a powerful case for Islam but it also shares the message of Islam and how we as a human race are in desperate need of it.
1. Combination of rational and psychological factors with atheists is dealt with in a very smooth and natural manner. This is the best part about the book.
2. Great clear explanation of Kalam cosmologist argument. Appropriate for high school senior and educated non experts.
3. Brings together the best of western Muslim Scholar contributions as well as key modern arguments.
4. Excellent chapters on Quran and the Prophet.
5. Interesting to read and great chapter titles.