This forum, which is ostensibly about a wide range of religious discussion, features mostly atheists on the offensive making constant demands of believers to "prove" what cannot be proven (hence the term faith). So be it. I'd like to take the opportunity to fire a return salvo with the hope a meaningful discussion can result.
The author Theodore Beale, under the nom de plume Vox Day, has written a book called The Irrational Atheist. I have done a search of the forums and have not seen the book discussed here (if so, kindly point me in that direction).
The book's stated mission is to "Dissect the Unholy Trinity of Dawkins, Harris, and Hitchens." It also deals with Dennett and Onfray. Written from a secular perspective, it does an effective job of exposing common atheist arguments such as religion is the greatest threat to humankind. Here's a sample from the chapter "The Case Against Science":
The five major religions of the world...have approximately
4.85 billion adherents, representing an estimated 71.3 percent
of the world’s population in 2007, and they have been around
for a collective 11,600 years. During the vast majority of those 116
centuries, the world has not been in any danger of extinction from
weapons of any kind, nor has the human race been in serious danger
of dying out from pollution, global warming, overpopulation, or anything
else. Despite 116 centuries filled with hundreds, if not thousands,
of diverse religions, all competing for mindshare, resources,
and dominance, the species has not merely survived, it has thrived....
...In the last sixty years, science has produced a veritable
witches’ brew of potential dangers to the human race, ranging
from atom-shattering explosive devices to lethal genetic modifications,
designer diseases, large quantities of radioactive waste and
even, supposedly, the accidental production of mini black holes and
strangelets through particle collider experiments....
...So, in only 3 percent of the time that religion has been on the scene,
science has managed to produce multiple threats to continued human
existence. Harris’s extinction equation, which states that S+F=(extinction), is not inherently wrong. But his conclusion is, because it is Science, not Faith, that is the factor in the equation that presents a deadly danger to Mankind.
The book also discusses supposed atrocities committed in the name of religion like the Spanish Inquisition and the Crusades. It points out that the vast majority of wars have had little to nothing to do with religion. Of particular interest to Christians and Atheists alike is chapter 15, which discusses why a benevolent God would allow bad things to happen.
Anyway, there will be plenty to discuss later. The book is available in hardcover at various bookstores and Amazon, but you can download the ebook for free here:
I lurk and occasionally post on the author's blog, Vox Popoli. If you think he is full of **** he wants your rebuttal. He claims no one has put forth a good counter argument yet, so have at it:
I'll be away from the forum tomorrow but look forward to discussing this book with anyone who has read it, since I think it makes a lot of good points.