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This brilliant book by renowned scientist and atheist Richard Dawkins explains the unlikeliness of there being a god in a highly informative, entertaining and down to earth way. Is currently at number 5 in bestselling books on Amazon (which also prices it at £11.99 exc delivery). This is the paperback version
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#1
Excuse me for being mistaken, it is actually £4.97 on Amazon for paperback version, but this excludes delivery
#2
£4.49 instore at Waterstones at the moment too, should you be passing one...
#3
Good price; and here is one to balance the argument:)

http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/31mk6tp2SdL._AA240_.jpg
#4
Dawkins is my false idol. I love him.
#5
I saw a board for this book the other day - anyone know what it's about?
1 Like #6
It's about natural selection, evolution, religion, atheists, bringing children up with religious beliefs as a "Christian child" or any other religious child is paramount to child abuse. Religion being the root of all evil etc. great book, great man.
#7
Thanks for this, just ordered. :thumbsup:
#8
Same price instore at Borders.
1 Like #9
TehSheep
It's about natural selection, evolution, religion, atheists, bringing children up with religious beliefs as a "Christian child" or any other religious child is paramount to child abuse. Religion being the root of all evil etc. great book, great man.

One could simplify things further and say that there is a vast body of empirical, falsifiable evidence for the evolution of man and for the natural laws which govern our universe. Whereas there is no evidence of any kind for a supreme being, creator or god to have created the Earth and the universe.
#10
There's an interesting book about those very laws here
#11
there's absolutely no conclusive evidence for evolution, that's why it's called a theory
1 Like #12
djmalice
there's absolutely no conclusive evidence for evolution, that's why it's called a theory


Go and read up what a scientific theory is.
1 Like #13
djmalice
there's absolutely no conclusive evidence for evolution, that's why it's called a theory


There's enough evidence that anybody who is an expert on the subject is utterly and completely convinced.

Of course, there's no way to be an expert on "God", since he's apparently invisible and doesn't speak much, can't be measured or detected in any way possible. Hrrrrrm.
#14
Dawking's book is very poorly written. Anyone I know who has read it said it was a let down considering how interesting it could have been.

I found it weak myself as one of his counter arguements to what I hear Christians put forward e.g:
To believe in evolution, the whole universe coming together, is like believing that a wind would blow over a scrap yard and all the bits of metal would all come together and become a fully working car


Dawking answer was:

The odds of God being true are the same...


Forgive the quote, its not exact, but thats his basic arguement. The book was far too smug for me.

It's very basic, but maybe suitable for our dumbed-down nation.

NYTimes review does a better job than me.
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/22/books/review/Holt.t.html?ex=1319169600&en=d9a0ba69b41f32df&ei=5088
#15
secretjedi
Dawking's book is very poorly written. Anyone I know who has read it said it was a let down considering how interesting it could have been.

I found it weak myself as one of his counter arguements to what I hear Christians put forward e.g:

Dawking answer was:


Forgive the quote, its not exact, but thats his basic arguement. The book was far too smug for me.

It's very basic, but maybe suitable for our dumbed-down nation.

NYTimes review does a better job than me.
http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/22/books/review/Holt.t.html?ex=1319169600&en=d9a0ba69b41f32df&ei=5088


From what I remember, Dawkins devotes a nice chunk of the book describing and explaining why that is exactly what evolution is not. (And it's a Boeing 747, not a car).
#16
The book is fun, but as mentioned his arguments are rather childish.
#17
A beautiful child close to me, six and the apple of her father's eye, believes that Thomas the Tank Engine really exists. She believes in Father Christmas, and when she grows up her ambition is to be a tooth fairy. She and her school-friends believe the solemn word of respected adults that tooth fairies and Father Christmas really exist. This little girl is of an age to believe whatever you tell her. If you tell her about witches changing princes into frogs she will believe you. If you tell her that bad children roast forever in hell she will have nightmares. I have just discovered that without her father's consent this sweet, trusting, gullible six-year-old is being sent, for weekly instruction, to a Roman Catholic nun. What chance has she? ... http://cscs.umich.edu/~crshalizi/Dawkins/viruses-of-the-mind.html


He is a little heavy handed at times, thinking all religion is pretty much a cancer that should be cut out of society (this is too far for me as I feel it can have some limited benefits). Although looking at the world today with the Christians/Jews and the Muslims all at each others throats, maybe he does have a point there! I certainly dont think this book contains any childish arguments, and its very well written IMHO. Have a read of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Dawkins to get an idea of what this guy is about.

I have to say, if you're religious you won't like this book, because it is asking religious people to ask questions about their faith - something most religious people dont like to do, because not asking questions is all part of religion.

The arguments also surround our "special treatment" of religion and how everyone has to treat it with kid gloves, for no apparent reason. It also deals with something that has always puzzled me - how anyone can be certain 100% of their belief in God, and then attempt to convince others with no evidence as such, just thier belief, and how believing something really strongly doesnt make it truth!

Well worth a read, intelligent theories backed up with solid evidence, and where there might not be solid evidence there is a genuine attemt to levy that with a rational and reasonable exploration/debate.



:)
#18
Diodorus-siculus
Good price; and here is one to balance the argument:)


Thanks for this link. Too many believe in the Evolution Myth without looking into all views on how we got here. As a Creationist, and having read Darwin and the likes, I simply cannot see how any intelligent person can reject the truth behind Intelligent Design.
#19
TehSheep
It's about natural selection, evolution, religion, atheists, bringing children up with religious beliefs as a "Christian child" or any other religious child is paramount to child abuse. Religion being the root of all evil etc. great book, great man.


Just shows how ignorant people can be - and those who accept this kind of nonsense will believe anything Dawkins and his ilk spew out!
#20
mikewot
One could simplify things further and say that there is a vast body of empirical, falsifiable evidence for the evolution of man and for the natural laws which govern our universe. Whereas there is no evidence of any kind for a supreme being, creator or god to have created the Earth and the universe.


You are blind mate!
#21
russ
I have to say, if you're religious you won't like this book, because it is asking religious people to ask questions about their faith - something most religious people dont like to do, because not asking questions is all part of religion.


This just shows up your ignorance of how people view their faith! Biblical Christianity is all part of asking questions. Only a fool accepts things at face value - and there are multitudes of fools today fed on the Evolution (brain washing) of the BBC. Study both sides of the issue before coming out with nonsense. My bookshelves hold many Evolution and Creationist books, but after reading them I am fully convinced that EVERYTHING was created by God.
#22
Better lock this thread I think else it will turn into a pointless arguement with the troller above. For what its worth I believe in something more substantial and tangible than God - The National Lottery. Having said that I've never watched it, although I do sometime give my Nan some money to play it on our behalf.
#23
[SIZE=2]
Predikuesi
Thanks for this link. Too many believe in the Evolution Myth without looking into all views on how we got here. As a Creationist, and having read Darwin and the likes, I simply cannot see how any intelligent person can reject the truth behind Intelligent Design.
[/SIZE]
[SIZE=2]Uuummm Truth? Intelligent Design has been proven in American courts of law (read up on the Dover decision et al) to not be scientific but purely religious. Religion, Genesis etc relies entirely on the bible as its 'evidence'. God made the universe they say, it says so in the bible. So who wrote the bible? Men did based on lots of stories from other earlier religions and lots of other earlier gods. Its a circular argument and there's a good debunking video of it on [/SIZE][SIZE=2]Youtube[/SIZE][SIZE=2].[/SIZE]
[SIZE=2]I shall stop posting in this thread but leave these two thoughts:[/SIZE]
[SIZE=2]1) If god made the universe and everything in it and nothing existed without god. Who made god?[/SIZE]
[SIZE=2]2) We're all born as atheists and those who have religion are almost invariably indoctrinated into the religion of their parents. Hardly anyone has the choice to look around and choose their religion based on the nicest churches, best songs or prayers etc.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=2]As a corollary to that even you, Predikuesi, are an atheist. Do you believe in Zeus or Apollo or Quetzalcoatl or Ra or Osiris or Thor or freya? Nor do I and if you examine the reasons why you don't believe in those gods you'll begin to understand why I don't believe in yours as well.[/SIZE]
#24
Love the Youtube link, brilliant!
#25
jonnyboy2
Love the Youtube link, brilliant!
In which case, you're going to love Pat Condell's Youtube channel even more. Check out the most recent video, and "Religion in the UK". The man should be PM!
#26
jonnyboy2
Love the Youtube link, brilliant!
Hmmm, I think I forgot to press "submit" earlier, but here it is again...check out Pat Condell for an alternative view!

PS - Hello! Liking these forums, only just from them via MSE.

EDIT: OOps, no I didn't - it must have been in a moderation queue. Sorry about the double posting!
#27
mikewot

[SIZE=2]Uuummm Truth? Intelligent Design has been proven in American courts of law (read up on the Dover decision et al) to not be scientific but purely religious. Religion, Genesis etc relies entirely on the bible as its 'evidence'. [/SIZE]


This just shows that you do not understand the issues and have never studied the Creationist point of view. What you have done, as all atheists do, is parrot what you have read in Evolution books. Go to www.answersingenesis.org to find out about scientific methods used by Creationists. Not all scientists are evolutionists you know!;-)
[admin]#28
Predikuesi - If you're planning on a long argument please start a thread in Misc. Thanks.
#29
Predikuesi
and there are multitudes of fools today fed on the Evolution (brain washing) of the BBC.


Lol, omg, u think the BBC brainwashes people to believe in evolution????? Enough said :giggle:
#30
Predikuesi
This just shows that you do not understand the issues and have never studied the Creationist point of view. What you have done, as all atheists do, is parrot what you have read in Evolution books. Go to www.answersingenesis.org to find out about scientific methods used by Creationists. Not all scientists are evolutionists you know!;-)

Creationists do not use scientific methods, they cannot because there is no science in simply stating "Goddidit". You're correct in that not all scientists are evilutionists but amongst those sciences which deal with the study of evolution, for example biology, palentology etc. etc. you won't find any who think man was created by a magical, mysterious all powerful being. As for answers in genesis :whistling: there are rebuttals to all the points in this website. In the 150 years since Darwins theory was published all the work done in science has gone to prove that evolution is a fact, whether you think a god did it or not, the facts are plain and the evidence lies in peer reviewed published papers in their thousands. If you can give links to a single, just one, peer reviewed paper published which supports the creation theory then you will have achieved a miracle.

Sorry admin, I had promised not to post again :oops:
1 Like #31
I love the way my Christian friends "protest too much" about Evolution. Their argument is everything is down to Creationism "because we believe it" and "you cant disprove it". As Dawkins says, you cant disprove that there is a chocolate teapot somewhere out in space, but if I say I REALLY believe it - how does that make it true?! And should everyone treat my belief about the teapot with special kid gloves? lol

I just wish people who are not religious could be unaffected by all the war and violence it causes (from all sides). Whatever your point of view I think its good to read both the books mentioned here, to be informed, rather than accepting theories of blind faith :thumbsup:


:)
#32
mikewot
In the 150 years since Darwins theory was published all the work done in science has gone to prove that evolution is a fact, whether you think a god did it or not, the facts are plain and the evidence lies in peer reviewed published papers in their thousands.


I do have a bargain to post, but I just wanted to briefly address this point first.

Evolution is certainly not fact: in order to prove it unequivicably, the process of evolution would need to be observed as it happened. Although the evidence is compelling, really the theory of evolution is just an idea expoused by a number of scientists, much as Christianity is just an idea expoused by a number of priests. Atheism is a religion just as much as Christianity or Creationism is: you state a categorical belief in a story of existence that relies on other thinkers' ideas, theses and concepts. And, just like Christianity, Atheism has lots of bits and pieces that are hypocritical (because logically Atheism should wholeheartedly back eugenics, but you don't hear Dawkins talking about stamina and intelligence tests to pick off the weak...).

And, as an aside, Darwin's theory of evolution has sorta been disproven, as it does not take into account recessive and dominant genetics which, as every GCSE science student will tell you, account for the large amount of genetic variation. Just like the priests who alter the Bible ever so slightly with every translation, Evolution theory gets rewritten every few decades.

It's all a system of belief. Atheism is no more logical than Christianity. It can be argued in circles for all eternity. Frankly, if Albert Einstein could be as logical and massively intelligent as he was yet still have a firm conviction in his God, who can state that one is more logical than the other?

Back to the bargains...
#33
Chanticleer
It's all a system of belief. Atheism is no more logical than Christianity.


Christianity posits all sorts of things without any evidence for them. Atheism denies the existence of something that has no proof. Which is more logical?
#34
I think this speaks volumes :-D

According to a study by Paul Bell, published in the UK Mensa Magazine in 2002, there is an inverse correlation between religiosity and intelligence. Analyzing 43 studies carried out since 1927, Bell found that all but four reported such a connection, and he concluded that "the higher one's intelligence or education level, the less one is likely to be religious or hold 'beliefs' of any kind."
#35
arfster
Christianity posits all sorts of things without any evidence for them. Atheism denies the existence of something that has no proof. Which is more logical?


But most of the evidence is given by people in laboratories doing things at an infinitesimal level, often using theories made to fit whatever result is given! I have been taught that in order to have fire you need heat, fuel and oxygen, but for all I know through observation, "oxygen" could be magical fairies which breathe life into the wick! Reductionist science - the attempt to make things smaller and smaller until you get to the essential building blocks of life, keeps finding smaller components that don't fit their original theories.

If there's a difference between the two, atheism (at present) is more likely to admit when something is wrong, that some key point in their ideology is wrong. Other religions don't usually do that.
#36
There have been studies that show the same inverse correlation between intelligence and belief in all forms of superstition (astrology, tarot, luck etc)

Of course, it's just a matter of definition: religion to me is just the modern form of superstition, which man has had since he came down from the trees. Sorry, meant to say: "since he boarded the Ark along with the dinosaurs".
#37
Chanticleer
I do . Atheism is a religion just as much as Christianity or Creationism is: you state a categorical belief in a story of existence that relies on other thinkers' ideas, theses and concepts. And, just like Christianity, Atheism has lots of bits and pieces that are hypocritical (because logically Atheism should wholeheartedly back eugenics, but you don't hear Dawkins talking about stamina and intelligence tests to pick off the weak...).



Back to the bargains...

sorry but how can atheism be a religion if there isnt a god
#38
jasonrat
sorry but how can atheism be a religion if there isnt a god


I would suggest that you start by reading this

Edit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atheism

and then this

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_atheism
#39
so its a philosophy rather than a religion
1 Like #40
Okay, not to start a flame war, but... I've read some of Dawkins' stuff before, and bought this as it seems intriguing, but he isn't the greatest writer in the world with a slightly clumsy way of going around things, seemingly pointing out the obvious as some sort of fantastic revelation. That said, I have bought it, but he's slightly preaching to the choir with me, so I'm not sure how much I'll enjoy it.

That said:
Chanticleer
Evolution is certainly not fact: in order to prove it unequivicably, the process of evolution would need to be observed as it happened. Although the evidence is compelling, really the theory of evolution is just an idea expoused by a number of scientists, much as Christianity is just an idea expoused by a number of priests. Atheism is a religion just as much as Christianity or Creationism is: you state a categorical belief in a story of existence that relies on other thinkers' ideas, theses and concepts. And, just like Christianity, Atheism has lots of bits and pieces that are hypocritical (because logically Atheism should wholeheartedly back eugenics, but you don't hear Dawkins talking about stamina and intelligence tests to pick off the weak...).
That's pretty inaccurate. "Atheism" isn't a religion like any other... in fact, atheism is not having a belief in a deity, usually with a belief in scientific discoveries. Referring to science, it adapts to the evidence. Therefore if one day it's shown that something is false, "science" changes. There's no faith, there's just belief in the evidence in front of you and a conclusion which seems to fit all the evidence. That's not to say Evolution is right, but if you have everything pointing towards it being right, you can accept it as true after enough evidence appears.

Contrast this to creationism, on the other hand, which by definition doesn't change. It starts with the presumption that God created people as said in the Bible and works backwards.

Chanticleer

And, as an aside, Darwin's theory of evolution has sorta been disproven, as it does not take into account recessive and dominant genetics which, as every GCSE science student will tell you, account for the large amount of genetic variation. Just like the priests who alter the Bible ever so slightly with every translation, Evolution theory gets rewritten every few decades.
Eh? Darwin's theory has far from been disproven, and evolution has pretty much stayed the same (unlike many other theories), and I don't understand what you're talking about. Genetic variation within living organisms is what Darwin's theory of evolution relies on. If there is little-to-no advantage in something (such as hair colour), then it's going to live on pretty widespread for a long time, and evolution works over long time periods, so even if there was a slight advantage in having red hair, for example, it'd could take several thousand years to have any real effect on society, since evolution is /slow/. GCSE-level Science really has nothing to contradict the theory of evolution.

But even if tomorrow there was a piece of irrefutable evidence to suggest that Darwin was wrong, no scientist nor atheist would be that upset - although annoyed that they'd got it wrong. They'll just go back to the drawing board and figure out something that fits better. It's what they've done with quantum physics vs. the classical model time and time again. But I can't see it happening with the wealth of evidence behind it.

Oh. btw, they still haven't quite figured out abiogenesis - the creation of the first organism. If you want a point to attack science on, that's the one, particularly as it's "a biggie".

It's all a system of belief. Atheism is no more logical than Christianity. It can be argued in circles for all eternity. Frankly, if Albert Einstein could be as logical and massively intelligent as he was yet still have a firm conviction in his God, who can state that one is more logical than the other?

Atheism has an feather in its cap, in that there's no predestined presumption. There's no "faith". It's not based on a message from God or tales told a million times and put to paper, but the only "beliefs" that are had are found in front of us, that are ever-changing based on the things we see and discover. There's very little faith when you're looking at what you see and making guesses based on that until something better comes along. It's near-impossible to prove atheism wrong, since all the evidence is based on what you can see, and constantly adapting.

And just because one scientist, albeit a clever one, believes in a god doesn't change much. Einstein was wrong about quantum theory too ;)

Perhaps I should suggest you'd read this book, as I don't think you have, as you seem to have misunderstood some of the points regarding atheism. Even if you disagree at the end, which you probably will, you might find it an entertaining, enlightening and challengingly read about other people's viewpoints on religion. :)

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