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The God Delusion

Durée : 13 h et 52 min
5 out of 5 stars (17 notations)

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Why You Should Download This Audiobook: Richard Dawkins invites you to imagine a world where New York's Twin Towers still stand, where Arabs and Israelis live in peace, where the Crusades—events directly responsible for the deaths of an estimated 1.2 million persons—never happened. In short, he invites you to imagine a world that would have been, and could be, without religion. That is not to say that he wishes to discard religion only because of its historical relationship to violence. This extensive, powerfully argued examination of why we believe, and the imperative of turning from Faith to Reason, has become an international best seller. It could change your life.

Description

Discover magazine recently called Richard Dawkins "Darwin's Rottweiler" for his fierce and effective defense of evolution. Prospect magazine voted him among the top three public intellectuals in the world (along with Umberto Eco and Noam Chomsky). Now Dawkins turns his considerable intellect on religion, denouncing its faulty logic and the suffering it causes.

He critiques God in all his forms, from the sex-obsessed tyrant of the Old Testament to the more benign (but still illogical) Celestial Watchmaker favored by some Enlightenment thinkers. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the supreme improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry, and abuses children, buttressing his points with historical and contemporary evidence. In so doing, he makes a compelling case that belief in God is not just irrational, but potentially deadly.

Dawkins has fashioned an impassioned, rigorous rebuttal to religion, to be embraced by anyone who sputters at the inconsistencies and cruelties that riddle the Bible, bristles at the inanity of "intelligent design", or agonizes over fundamentalism in the Middle East or Middle America.

©2006 Richard Dawkins (P)2006 Tantor Media, Inc.

Critiques

"Richard Dawkins is the leading soothsayer of our time.... The God Delusion continues his thought-provoking tradition." (J. Craig Venter, decoder of the human genome)
" The God Delusion is smart, compassionate, and true....If this book doesn't change the world, we're all screwed." (Penn & Teller)
"The world needs...passionate rationalists....Richard Dawkins so stands out through the cutting intelligence of The God Delusion." (James D. Watson, co-discoverer of DNA, author of The Double Helix)

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  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Blake
  • 04/06/2013

Charming, smart, and unpretentious

When I first listened to the sample of this book about a year ago, I misjudged Mr. Dawkins. I fell into a trap of stereotyping him as a pretentious twit based on the little bit of content I heard. I also think his accent had something to do with it. I thought this book sounded like one written to make atheists feel validated and smug. But after having his books reccomended to me by others, and reading more and more positive things about him, I gave him a shot. I started with "The Greatest Show On Earth", moved on to "The God Delusion", and then listened to "The Selfish Gene". Now I love this guy (and Lalla Ward too). I can't get enough of his clear thinking, his understandable use of language, his vast intellect, and most surprisingly, his sense of humor. This isn't really a science book, but who would guess that a scientist could be so fun?

In The God Delusion, he's basically just making the case that being an atheist is okay, and you don't have to be ashamed to admit it. He lays out every argument made on behalf of belief, shredding them to pieces to the point where there's basically nothing left but blind faith. And profoundly unfounded blind faith at that. But its not done with contempt or maliciousness, but with wit, airtight logic, and a wry sense of humor.

Alternating narration between himself and his wife, who is a trained actress, the audio format is very pleasing to the ears. Very strong performances by both will make sure that you never become bored. This is my favorite Dawkins book.

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  • Jeff Koeppen
  • 25/08/2017

An Atheist Classic

I wonder how different my life would’ve been had this book been written twenty-five years earlier and I had read it in high school when I first started having doubts about religion. At the time I was taught biology and physics by a religious person and chemistry but a teacher who had no interest in teaching, period. I had no exposure to any books which pushed back against religion, even when studying the sciences. Maybe I just didn’t look hard enough. Luckily, the science and philosophy classes I took at the University of Minnesota set me on my course in life away from religion.

I listened to the Audible version of the book which was narrated by Richard himself, and his wife (currently separated), Lalla Ward, who is a British actress. I thought it was fantastic to have Richard talking to me for the better part of fourteen hours. Listening to The God Delusion in 2017 had less of an impact on me as it would’ve decades, or even five years earlier, because I’m now so familiar with Dawkins’ message through his numerous articles and appearances on podcasts and in the media. I was lucky enough to hear him speak in Rochester, MN in 2015. His message is familiar to me. Still, this book pushed all my buttons as it so thoroughly presented its case against a supernatural entity controlling our personal lives like a puppet master and influencing events on a world-wide scale. It is a truly great book and Dawkins expertly succeeds at getting his points across.

In addition to successfully making is argument against the existence of gods, he also adds interesting quotes and commentary from some other great minds: Carl Sagan, Charles Darwin, David Hume (visited his statue in Edinburgh), PZ Meyers (fellow Minnesotan), Thomas Huxley, Thomas Jefferson, Mark Twain, Sam Harris, Bertrand Russell, Sam Harris, Christopher Hitchens, and Julia Sweeney. Yes, Julia Sweeney! He dedicates the book to his friend and novelist Douglas Adams with Douglas’ quote, “Isn’t it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it, too?”

I’m guessing a true believer wouldn’t lose their faith in the supernatural after reading The God Delusion, and I’m sure most wouldn’t touch it with a ten foot pole; but, it would be interesting to hear what a believer thought of it, especially those currently living in the Sunday echo chamber of Bronze Age tales (been there). To make decisions in almost every other aspect of life, people want to know all the facts and hear both sides of an argument except when it comes to their faith, which is accepted without question or debate.

We live in a world of great scientific knowledge with new discoveries in the news daily. Throughout history, gods have been used to fill in gaps of knowledge which humans didn’t understand. Hopefully some day in the future our ancestors will fill in all, or at least enough, gaps to put an end to using the supernatural to explain the natural world.

Five stars, as expected.

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  • Global
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  • Rick Just
  • 21/12/2006

Dangerous Religion

If you've read much Dawkins, (The Blind Watchmaker, The Selfish Gene, Climbing Mount Improbable, and others) it will come as no surprise to you that he is no fan of religion. What is new in The God Delusion is that the evolutionary biologist goes beyond rational disagreement with those who believe, and argues that religion is dangerous and should be opposed on nearly every front. He recognizes that religion has been an important force in art and literature, but gives it credit for little else in the realm of good.

Dawkins makes no distinction between radical evangelical Christianity, the Taliban and Jihadist Muslims. The worldview of each is equally intolerant of any other belief, and so ultimately equally dangerous.

Dawkins spends about half the book examining historical and philosophical arguments for the existence of God. In doing so, he takes apart the reasoning of many men, noble and ignoble, most of whom are dead. In a historical review such of this, arguing with the dead is unavoidable. Dawkins spends a bit too much time arguing with the more recently dead Stephen Jay Gould, a fellow evolutionary biologist and sometimes nemesis, than is strictly necessary.
One thing that particularly rankles Dawkins is the concept of children being born into a religion. They grow up, typically, thinking that their parents' religion is the one true faith. How lucky for them. Dawkins seethes at calling a four-year-old a Catholic or Muslim child. We do not call them a Democrat or a Republican based on their parents' convictions. They are allowed to make that choice for themselves when they mature. Religion should be a matter of choice, not indoctrination, according to Dawkins. Of all his contentions in this particularly contentious book, this may be the least likely to gain traction.

Because religion in its multitude of forms is so widely practiced, Dawkins assertions will seem radical. They will not, however, seem irrational.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • brenty
  • 19/01/2009

well worth your time

i am a christian, and i found this book to be brilliant (with the exception of the section on memes, which i found to be pedantic)... i believe that anyone -- religious or non-religious, young or old -- should read this book... whether you agree with the conclusions Dawkins draws, these are important questions that have bearing on all of humanity, and this is a very well considered, cohesive, and enjoyable treatise on matters of origin and existence... its a bit slow at times, but on the whole i cannot recommend this highly enough...

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  • David Kemper
  • 06/09/2017

worth every penny

Dawkins does a fantastic job explaining his reasoning of atheism. regardless of belief system I think everyone should take time to read this book, even if it's just to understand the atheist perspective and thought process.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 05/09/2017

Excellent. Highly recommended.

i highly recommend this book/audio book. The book is really well organized for making the overall argument. it is amusing, insightful, and inspiring.

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  • Mike McMinn
  • 26/06/2017

Enlightening

Well presented and documented. Supports the adage that ignorance is bliss. One should believe what they wish to believe, but no one has the right to impose their believe on others. Listen and decide for yourself!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • R. Hilton
  • 17/05/2007

A good read but it won't sway your mind.

I've read a couple of Richard Dawkin's works: The Blind Watchmaker and The God Delusion.

First of all, let me praise Mr. Dawkins, and Lalla Ward for a captivating reading of his work. They make a good oratory team, very pleasant listening. I was hoping for a bit more "meat" to chew on in God Delusion but to me, Richard simply sets up straw men then slays them magnificently. Like a skilled surgeon, he seeks out the most tumorous examples of mankind's failures in the name of religion then portrays them as an evil perpetrated by faith in God. I share his disgust for religion as we know it, having been corrupted by corrupt men, but that comparrison is just as useless as blaming a firearm for murdering someone. From a more positive perspective, Christians, especially church leaders and clergy, should read TGD, not so much for what it reveals about atheism but for what it reveals about how religion is perceived by non-believers. It is to their shame the message of The Cross is lost in the cacophony of religious infighting and corruption.

A reasonable counterbalance to TGD is Ravi Zacharias' Can Man Live Without God?, a collection of speeches given by Mr. Zacharias. Ravi sets up his own straw men for battle and does an eloquent job of doing so. Of course, he's coming from the perspective of one who believes in an almighty Creator so he manages to raise questions that Mr. Dawkins didn't seem to think of. Where Dawkins attempts to appeal to logic, Ravi focuses more on the philosophical aspects of the state of mankind. My personal, and totally biased opinion, is that Zacharias gets a head start in the debate simply because he addresses the heart of man, rather than the mere mind of man.

To those who are convinced in their positions, whether it be for or against God, neither of these orators will sway you from your stance. If you're genuinely on the fence, read both books.

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  • Mark
  • 21/06/2015

Mythbuster

I read this book a few years ago, but I’m a big fan of Richard Dawkins so I decided to ‘read’ it again. Even though I was familiar with the material, I found it just as compelling, if not more so, the second time around. I’m addicted to Dawkins’ crisp logical arguments and his brilliant use of analogies and examples.

I have to admire the courage of a man who doesn’t pull any punches in his criticism of religion in general, and especially of religious fundamentalist fanaticism (both Christian and Muslim). I’m sure this has put him in some danger of reprisal from these groups, but he doesn’t hold back because he’s passionate that religion is a force distorting human thought and behaviour to a massive extent.

He emphasizes that children are indoctrinated with religious beliefs at a vulnerable age, an age when young minds are ‘programmed’ by natural selection to believe things that adults tell them, especially when those adults are very solemn and emphatic about the message in question. For example, in modern times an adult would be very emphatic and serious when cautioning a child against jumping into the deep end of a swimming pool or crossing a busy street. The child knows when the adult means business, and these messages tend to hit home. This tendency in children to obey and believe adults when in this serious mode would (in our ancestry) have been favoured by natural selection, because those children would be more likely to survive and pass on their genes. But, Dawkins argues, this leaves the way open for a by-product, a ‘virus’, a meme to hijack the receptive mind of the child. If an idea such as ‘god is watching you all the time and will punish you if you sin’ is impressed upon the child in this solemn way, then the child will grow up and pass this idea on to his children, and so the religious meme can take hold and a vicious cycle may prevail.

Another of his main points is that the truth, or otherwise, of any religious proposition should be open to question as if it was any other ordinary subject. He doesn’t believe that religion should be protected from having to defend its veracity by having a special privileged status as ‘sacred’. This is an unfair advantage. It should be fair game for robust debate.

And a third point that I like is his identification that when people consider the fact that there either is or is not a god, they perceive the probability to be 50/50, because this is a binary choice. Dawkins explains that the binary choice is not 50/50. His example to illustrate this point is the existence of the Tooth Fairy. The Tooth Fairy either exists or not, and this is also a binary situation, but here we can see that the probability of this existing, or a unicorn or the god Zeus, are much smaller than 50%. We should apply the same reasoning to the existence probability of any God, but it becomes yet more unlikely the more specific and detailed (and farfetched) are the proposed properties of this deity (e.g. he created the world less than 10,000 years ago, he killed everyone in a flood, except for a few humans and animals saved in an ark, he had a son via a virgin birth on earth, the son was crucified and came back to life after being dead 3 days, this god knows all the thoughts of all people at all times and answers prayers, he sends good ones to heaven and bad ones to hell etc. etc.).

Dawkins does sometimes go off at a bit of a tangent with some slightly convoluted and tenuous arguments to support his ideas. For example, when discussing the human psychological need to be consoled by a god (‘a god-shaped hole in the brain’), he explains this by alluding to a child’s need for an imaginary friend (specifically, ‘Binky’ in a poem by A.A. Milne). I sort of see what he is getting at, but I think a less sympathetic reader might find this easy to mock and dismiss. It isn’t every child that has an imaginary friend, and those that do have them grow out of them, so to my mind this isn’t all that strong an argument. Personally, the times when I would like there to be a god are when I’m afraid or grief-stricken; those lonely scary times at 3 a.m. when I think about my own death or that of a loved one. At other times I don't feel the need to believe in god.

Dawkins has been criticised as being too fanatical in his atheist position, so that his opponents can point to him and say that he’s just another variety of fundamentalist, just as bad as the religious ones. However, although Dawkins does sometimes stray into very controversial territories, reinforcing the idea that he is an extremist and a ‘fundamentalist’, I believe that his occasional excesses are just the result of his passion and commitment to a phenomenally worthy cause, which is to help people to use reason, logic and the evidence of their senses to determine the likelihood of the existence of supernatural beings and to decide whether or not they should live their lives according to rules laid down in ancient scriptures.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • carl801
  • 09/09/2007

Wow, I can come out of the closet!

This book was a life-changing experience for me. I always knew I was not a believer, but I never could articulate what I was. I owe a debt of gratitude to Richard Dawkins for his rational, elegant, and passionate dissection of the intellectual fraud we call revealed religion. You could say that Dawkins gave me the courage to come out of the closet and put my HL Mencken quotes up on the wall for all to see.

Perhaps the best thing about this book is the moral outrage it no doubt causes among believers, so many of whom probably haven't read (listened) to it.

Once I started listening to this book, I could not stop until the last word was spoken. This is the only audiobook I've listened to twice.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 27/12/2009

Erhellend

Sicherlich ein sehr umstrittenes Buch in diversen Kreisen. Jedoch für jeden weltlichen und vor allem vernunftbegabten Menschen ein Muß. Die Kritiken, die das Buch als ebenso fanatisch beschreiben, wie die Religionen, über deren fatalen Fanatismus und derene Konsequenzen das Buch handelt, kann ich nicht nachvollziehen. Es mag Teile geben, über die man streiten kann, aber in den Grundzügen und dessen, was im Kern beschrieben wird, sollte sich meiner Hoffnung nach jeder denkende Mensch wiederfinden. Das würde so manche Konflikte in der Welt lösen.

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  • Umrath
  • 21/04/2014

Augenöffnend

Wer nach diesem Buch noch an einen Gott glaubt, hat das Buch nicht verstanden.

Dawkins überzeugt auf ganzer Linie, argumentiert scharf und treffsicher.

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  • Marcel
  • 06/12/2016

Meine kleine Einsicht

Was hat Ihnen am allerbesten an The God Delusion gefallen?

Der Gotteswahn, auch wenn er ein aufklärendes Buch ist, ist nie herablassend. Es gab Momente wo bei denen ich dachte, jetzt geht er aber einen Schritt zu weit, jedoch nach kurzem einlesen in gewisse Thematiken haben dann gezeigt, das es nicht herablassend war sondern nur eine Tatsachen Beschreibung.

Besonders das Kapitel über Moral und die Entwicklung eben jeder gibt einen schönen Einblick über die verzerrte Wahrnehmung, welche heute noch oft existiert.

Welche Figur hat Ihnen am besten gefallen? Warum?

Es existieren keine Figuren- daher bleib dieses hier leer.

Wie hat Ihnen Richard Dawkins and Lalla Ward als Sprecher gefallen? Warum?

Beide Sprecher sind sehr angenehm zu hören. Besonders hervor zu heben ist Dawkins. Wenn man nur sein geschriebenes Wort liest, scheint es manchmal sehr hart und frech zu sein, jedoch schafft er es diese sachliche härte mit seiner Stimme abzufedern, was für mich besonders das Hörbuch interessant macht.

Hinzukommt, dass ich es immer besser finde den Autoren selbst zu hören, da dann gewisse Schwerpunkte besser zu verstehen sind, was hier Dawkins mit Hilfe seiner Ex-Frau sehr gut schafft - Besonders in Dialogform.

Gab es im Hörbuch einen Moment, der Sie ganz besonders berührt hat?

---

Was wäre für andere Hörer sonst noch hilfreich zu wissen, um das Hörbuch richtig einschätzen zu können?

Jeder, der die Bücher von Dawkins kenn, kann hier beherzt noch einmal zu greifen, denn Dawkins schafft es seinem Buch mittels Stimme gewisse Schwerpunkte zu geben.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • T. Schmidt-zimmermann
  • 29/09/2015

Eye opening book!

A "must read" book that goes far beyond just religion and/or evolution. A real consciousness raiser.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Uwe
  • 30/03/2013

Wonderful book on a delicate matter

Richard Dawkins covers the wide range of social, political and scientifc aspects of God and religion from the perspective of a natural scientist. It is very thrilling (in all aspects of its meaning) to follow him through various stages of "opinion" on god and religion, to be reminded of contradictions found in the scriptures, to be confronted with the sometimes outrageous influence of religion on education and politics. Although Richard Dawkins declares himself an atheist, he manages to keep a scientifc distance to the subject.

Personally, I feel the book is clearly a must, a must in particular for religious people: if believing in god and religion cannot stand against science, faith turns out to be simply a lack of knowledge, or even worse, as plain ignorance.

Richard Dawkins and Lalla Ward present the subject extremely well and in a very sensitive manner. I greatly enjoyed listening to their presentation.

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  • Arystar
  • 01/11/2019

Brilliant

I had high expectations and was not disappointed at all! I highly recommend it to anyone.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Cristian
  • 04/10/2018

Good book

Always love when the author is the narrator. Also, overall good arguments, although some of them feel a bit dated. Would definitely recommend!

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  • Felix Koch
  • 29/09/2018

Everything you need to know about science vs God

When you're reading this, you'll probably be familiar with Dawkins, Hitchens and other experts in the field of debunking judean christianity.
This book covers everything from evolution to morality, apologetics and more.
I prefer the audiobook over the actual book because it's easier for me to follow. Dawkins voice makes it somewhat simpler.

I can highly recommend this book to anyone who ever critically thinks about the reality around him. Let it be a deist, agnostic or atheist. If you enjoy listening to well founded, researched scientists on such matters: This book is for you.

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  • Susanne M. F. Franke
  • 01/11/2017

Sinn-voll

Die Darlegungen Richard Dawkins' zur Entstehung der Gott-Idee, von Religion und Glaube, sowie deren schädlichem Einfluss auf unser Denken ergeben soviel mehr Sinn als alles religiöse Gemurmel zusammen.

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  • Nik
  • 19/02/2017

Sehr empfehlenswert für alle die bereit sind ihren anerzogenen Glauben kritisch zu hinterfragen

Sehr empfehlenswert! Wer, wie ich, christlich erzogen wurde, aber den Wahrheitsgehalt der "Heiligen Schriften" (auch den der Schriften anderer Religionen) bezweifelt, der ist hier genau richtig. Es ist als ob jemand all das in Worte fasst, was man immer schon irgendwie geahnt hat...das die ganze Religionsnummer nur ein Geschäftsmodell zur Bereicherung und zur Machtausübung über die Massen ist und keine der großen Fragen der Menschheit beantworten kann. Darüber hinaus wird plausibel erklärt welche "Nebenwirkungen" die Religionen noch so mit sich bringen, so dass der moralische Anspruch der Kirchen ebenfalls in sich zusammen fällt...
Ich habe das Hörbuch in der englischen Version gehört um "zwei Fliegen mit einer Klappe" zu schlagen, allerdings sollte man das nur tun, wenn man sich sicher genug ist, das meiste zu verstehen.