Atheist Delusions has ratings and reviews. David Bentley Hart provides a bold correction of the New Atheists’s misrepresentations of the Christian. Atheist Delusions: The Christian Revolution and Its Fashionable Enemies is a book by the theologian, philosopher, and cultural commentator David Bentley Hart. The book explores what Hart identifies as historical and popular. The New Atheist thing seems to be moribund at the moment, although the half- corpse sometimes twitches. But that may paradoxically make this.

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My intention here was less a review than a summary of my thoughts and takeaways from this book, but needless to say it was a worthwhile, clearminded work of rare quality.

This is a book I would strongly recommend to anyone interested in the new atheism delusuons also where we have come from and were we are going as a society It hadt to mind that Rabindranath Tagore specifically predicted that Westerners would end up doing this to cope with the inhuman “machine civilization” he saw them building in the late 19th century.

What I most appreciated about the book, however, was the way Hart shows how Christian though, based on the foundational principle of love and charity that delusuons, caring for the otherwas both a radical break from what had happened before it, and the cause of much of delusione we, today, consider to be good even if we have largely lost the ability to discern where it originally came from. David Bentley Hart provides a bold correction of the New Atheists’s misrepresentations of the Christian past, countering their polemics with a brilliant account of Christianity and its message of human charity as the most revolutionary movement in all of Western history.

Therefore, Hart meticulously shows how Christianity did not impede science the chapter on Galileo is hilariousburn witches the Inquisition, despite its bad moments, actually limited the bloodiness of the State’s persecution of hereticsor fight religious wars the Crusades are actually a different case, worthy of a conversation but delusiins under this topic. Having laid out his argument, Hart proceeds in Part II afheist dispel some of the most popular myths about Christian and more generally Western history.

He provides an excellent argument that even in post-Christian society, many of the things we value could only have existed thanks to Christian ideals and thus still pervade even the most irreligious among us. Hart also responds to objections such as: Hart evinces the erudition and knowledge of both a classical philosophical and theological education. Given the ending, I’m taking back one of those stars.

Sure, this book has a particular audience in mind, too. Our conception of reality is nothing acting upon a vast canvas of nothingness, simply the will being pulled this way and that at any given moment.


Feb 10, Trevor rated it liked it. In fact, violent crime only seems to decrease. If you can read Hart you’ll get a chance to sharpen your arguments against a really good mind. Some might consider this more a nart than a blessing. He also sees the transformation of Christianity into the state religion of the Roman Empire as a great disaster — for both Christianity and the Empire.

May 22, Samuel Brown rated it liked it. Hart finds laughable the idea that ethical values appear out of sheer reason or mere thinking—instead, they are products of culture. I love the section where he speaks about modern society h This is not a light read! Is charity really one of them? Aug 04, Jacob Aitken rated it liked it. In other words, the belief that the power to do something means one knows 1 what one is doing, 2 whether one should do it, and 3 whether other truths should take priority over this power.

He may have hated many Christians for their hypocrisy, but he hated Christianity itself principally on account of its enfeebling solicitude for the weak, the outcast, the infirm, and the diseased; and, because he was conscious of the historical contingency of all cultural values, he never deluded himself that humanity could do away with Christian faith while simply retaining Christian morality in some diluted form, such as liberal social conscience or innate human sympathy.

Atheist Delusions : David Bentley Hart :

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Nietzsche, Celsus but no one in the past centur It’s just unfair, really — four adorably shallow “public intellectuals” Harris, Dawkins, Hitchens, Dennett with zero theological training versus one of the most learned human beings on the planet.

The practical part of me acknowledges that anti-NA polemics probably do have an delusiins role to play in society, and Hart is an order of magnitude better than the competition in this sector. He doesn’t try to make one-to-one correlations ie: The general myth in our culture, promoted not just by new atheist but older delusins of Christianity as well, delisions that the ancient world was a place of reason and prosperity until Christianity came along and replaced it with dogmatic faith, plunging western culture into centuries of “dark ages” from which we only emerged in the modern period with the E Hart does not systematically respond delusione the “New Atheists” here, instead he focuses on aspects of their attack on Christianity relating to history.

Any recommendations out there on his other books? Will we lose all this in a post-Christian society? Aug 20, Scott rated it it was ok.

To ask other readers questions about Atheist Delusionsplease sign up. Hart takes on some of the prevailing themes in the popular New Atheist literature including the idea nart religion has been a primary source of misery throughout history and that its effects were only mitigated as the chains of superstition were thrown off with the scientific revolution and enlightenment.


The title is a misnomer because the book isn’t an ambitious defense of God’s existence in any traditional sense; it is rather–to quote Hart’s introduction–“an extended meditation upon certain facts of history, and no more [ The emphasis is more on the ‘Christian Revolution’ than the ‘Delusions’ thank God, though clearly they largely form one object. But I think he does a superb job of deconstructing the shallow and wooly thinking of the new fundamentalist atheists.

Our current crop of disbelievers on the other hand seem to be cheerfully unaware or unconcerned about what may fill this celusions moral vacuum.

There is some really useful historical work in this book as well, countering some of the more common claims that Christianity generally introduced anti-intellectualism, tyranny, and the mistreatment of women and delusionz into the world.

One strength of the book is that, while Hart an Eastern Orthodox Christian believes in Christianity and the Christian gospel, and thus Christian morality and ethics, he is not triumphalist about certain aspects of the story he tells.

Additionally, he aims to debunk what he taheist are popular historical myths used to attack Delusinos.

Review: David Bentley Hart, “Atheist Delusions”

Delusion in the past people killed for various types of chauvinism, the new amorality of the time has opened the door for atrocities of a scale “industrial” and type “scientific” never seen – and we’ve walked through this door time and again.

There is much more that could be said, but he does it better, and so I would urge anyone who is interested in the historical impact of Christianity, or is curious about how accurate popular attacks on Christianity actually are, to pick it up. And perhaps there are works of his where it is just part of the jargon of doing philosophy in our selusions. I came to this website thinking I would find progressive opinions on topics of religion and faith.

The thesis is simply that Christianity is the greatest revolution the world has ever seen; that it is, in a sense, the only revolution because it was a quiet revolution from below ; that therefore only Christianity has been capable of truly altering hearts and minds; that Christianity is unique in the extent it motivates charitable institutions such as hospitals and orphanages; and that, above all, the Christian vision introduced an understanding of universal human dignity which forever after made it impossible to “innocently” engage in cruelty toward the weak and the lowly.