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Dawkins Lays Out the Case for Atheism
le 17 novembre 2006
Richard Dawkins is an evolutionary theorist and holds the Charles Simonyi Chair in the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University. He is also a best seller author of science books, and quite easy to read.
In this book, Dawkins tackles the problem of religion -- and he does see it as a problem. Dawkins begins by pointing out that there is no evidence whatsoever of god. True, he cannot prove that god does not exist, but the same is true of all possible gods, including Zeus and Wotan. The fact that something cannot be proven false is no evidence whatsoever that is true.
Dawkins further points out how religion (or, more precisely, faith) is so damaging. Faith is, quite simply, the enemy of reason. If one believes something on faith then, be definition, it does not matter what the evidence shows, one will still believe. It is a matter of faith. No matter how strong the evidence of evolution, for example, many faithful simply refuse to believe. With faith, there is no argument, no evidence good enough. With reason, one will still make mistakes, but at least one is trying to get it right.
Dawkins believes very strongly in what he says, but that does not make him just another fundamentalist. Dawkins came to his beliefs by looking at evidence, considering all arguments and applying reason. If, tomorrow, one presented him with evidence that he was wrong, he would change his mind.
This book will offend many readers, but that is not what Dawkins intends and it only proves his point: readers who are offended have been so blinded by religion that they are unable to consider that they might be wrong without suffering pain.
For an explanation of how evolution works, read Dawkins' The Blind Watchmaker. For a small sample of the evidence behind the theory (and a brief history of life on earth), read The Ancestor's Tale. These books are written in a less strident manner, and would only offend the those who take the Bible completely literally, and cannot tolerate the thought that they are mistaken.