[Ebook] ➩ Outgrowing God: A Beginner’s Guide Author Richard Dawkins – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk

Outgrowing God: A Beginner’s Guide Should We Believe In God In This New Book, Written For A New Generation, The Brilliant Science Writer And Author Of The God Delusion, Explains Why We Shouldn TShould We Believe In God Do We Need God In Order To Explain The Existence Of The Universe Do We Need God In Order To Be Good In Twelve Chapters That Address Some Of The Most Profound Questions Human Beings Confront, Dawkins Marshals Science, Philosophy And Comparative Religion To Interrogate The Hypocrisies Of All The Religious Systems And Explain To Readers Of All Ages How Life Emerged Without A Creator, How Evolution Works And How Our World Came Into BeingFor Anyone Hoping To Grapple With The Meaning Of Life And What To Believe, Outgrowing God Is A Challenging, Thrilling And Revelatory Read


10 thoughts on “Outgrowing God: A Beginner’s Guide

  1. says:

    Ok, so this review is long and some of it is personal I realise that some of you want to know solely about the book and so I ve noted with a line where the actual book review begins Feel free to skip the beginning I promise not to pass out any exams Once upon a time I was a girl who believed in God I believed in the Christian god but none of the other thousands of gods I, of course, believed in the right one I believed the Bible was to be taken literally, that Adam and E Ok, so this review is long and some of it is personal I realise that some of you want to know solely about the book and so I ve noted with a line where the actual book review begins Feel free to skip the beginning I promise not to pass out any exams Once upon a time I was a girl who believed in God I believed in the Christian god but none of the other thousands of gods I, of course, believed in the right one I believed the Bible was to be taken literally, that Adam and Eve, Noah and his ark, Abraham and Isaac and all the other myths in the Bible were actual history Set down in a book by God Himself Every word and every story were the literal truth Because that s what I d been told.But then I grew up I stopped believing in fairies and Santa Claus, Adam and Eve, and Noah s Ark I realised that not everything people tell us are true, and not everything we read in books is real It was a gradual process, my unbelief I was too terrified of an eternal hell to stop believing over night, too brainwashed to allow myself to admit and ponder all of the questions in my mind I know this is true for many others who have been brought up Christian or Muslim or Jewish or any other religion in which we are threatened with eternal punishment if we don t believe the right way, in the right god It is difficult to free oneself of indoctrination but some of us are able to do so, slow and painful as the process can be.By the time I read Richard Dawkins The God Delusion in 2008, I had already worked my way intellectually out of belief in the Christian god However, I still thought there must be something After all, there is life How could there possibly be life if something hadn t created and designed it Therefore shrug God But then Then I read The God Delusion and Dawkins introduced me to the theory of evolution through natural selection and just like that, there was no need for a god No need for a designer No need for belief in any supernatural being Wow I was blown away by the beauty and simplicity of evolution How it all makes perfect sense No wonder some religious people refuse to even learn about evolution Whilst there are certainly believers who believe in a god even though they accept science and evolution, many are scared that if they no longer have a need for a designer, their faith will crumble And that is a very scary prospect for some believers Schools in the US are sadly not required to teach evolution and many do not I was 33 years old before I learned of the most beautiful scientific theory there is, that of evolution through natural selection Ok, let s get on to the book In Outgrowing God A Beginner s Guide Richard Dawkins relates how he too clung to the idea of a god, a need for a designer, until he learned about evolution though at the much younger age of 15 Again, I think this is why some believers are so afraid of evolution Their faith isn t as strong as they want us to believe it is and on some level they know that every time there is a scientific and natural explanation for something, the need for God slips a little further away Mr Dawkins is often thought to be harsh on faith and unfortunately I think some people refuse to listen to him for that reason alone To some, he can come off as arrogant and condescending when discussing faith and religions However, in Outgrowing God A Beginner s Guide, Mr Dawkins has toned that down For those who are already atheist, there probably isn t much you will learn in this book It is gearedtowards those who have started questioning but still haven t been able to find alternate answers to some of the reasons people are told they should believe, especially in the Christian or Muslim or Jewish god Dawkins quotesof the Bible than I remember him quoting in The God Delusion and I think that is very important If you are going to point out inconsistencies or the horrific behaviour of the Christian god, you need to give examples of this Perhaps unfortunately, many believers do not know what their own holy books say and thus it is important to give examples when criticising those books The first part of Outgrowing God answers questions about the Bible, where it came from and who wrote it Is it really divine and worthy of unquestioning belief Dawkins discusses the problem of good and evil and whether we need gods in order to be good spoiler nope If there is no god, how do we decide what is good Do holy books really contain nuggets of ethicality and morality that we humans couldn t come up with on our own Do they not actually containimmorality than morality If scripture is eternal, then why does morality evolve For instance, most of us in today s world no longer think it appropriate to stone a woman to death for talking to a man who is not her husband Most of us do not think a child should be murdered for dishonouring their parent Thankfully we have overall become much less violent than people were in biblical times Our morals have changed, and for the better.The second part of the book is about evolution and describes the bottom up approach that makes it seem like there must be some intelligent designer creating life Dawkins points out precisely and clearly how life forms evolve over millions of years, each successive generation passing on their DNA, including mutations Those mutations are crucial to evolution when they are beneficial to life, the individual with that mutation will survive longer and pass onoffspring that have that mutation than others without it, who will then live longer and pass onoffspring that have that mutation than others, etc On and on and on, generation after generation, for millions of years The process is so intricate and so stunningly simple Whilst most things Dawkins talks about in this book I already knew about, there were some gorgeous examples of animal evolution that I hadn t He explains the process cephalopods use to camouflage themselves and how flounders have evolved grossly misshapen heads both things I d never read about before Click here to watch an awesome video of an octopus camouflaged against seaweed you won t believe your eyes Some believers like to point to the human eye as evidence that there must be a designer Dawkins points out how the human eye is actually a very flawed design but that it makes perfect sense when viewed ha ha through the lens of evolution He explains how vampire bats have evolved generosity, regurgitating part of the blood they have eaten to feed a bat who was not as fortunate in finding food By sharing with others that are hungry, they know that they will be reciprocated in kind the next time they have an unproductive night of hunting He talks of starlings, and how their synchronous flight patterns look designed but are actually quite simple when looked at from a bottom up approach.Oh so many glorious examples of how fascinating and beautiful and yes, horrific too think of the gazelle and cheetah, one of which must die for the other to live the natural world is I could read books by Dawkins all day every day His books on evolution excite me like no other, his explanations the grandest and yet simplest I ve read We live in a wonderful, awe inspiring world teeming with incredible and ever evolving life forms That, for me, is enough.If you are beginning to question your own religious beliefs, you might find answers to some of your questions here If you would like to learn the basics of evolution, that too you will learn in this book It s a terrific introduction to why we no longer need gods to explain the natural world and why we are better off getting our morals through rational thinking than through old holy books If you already know about evolution and or are already atheist, this might be a fun refresher book though you probably won t learn very much I still recommend it


  2. says:

    This book was quite the ticket Everything written here was crystal clear, graspable, progressive I ve never read Dawkins shifting from atheism to biology, to chemistry and physics before.I gave the book 5 stars, as you see I think it s better than the God Delusion It s less provocative which I don t mind and it s gently coaxing the reader in the desired direction, that of understanding.I gave many books this year a perfect score, yet is there such a book as a perfect one Outgrowing God is This book was quite the ticket Everything written here was crystal clear, graspable, progressive I ve never read Dawkins shifting from atheism to biology, to chemistry and physics before.I gave the book 5 stars, as you see I think it s better than the God Delusion It s less provocative which I don t mind and it s gently coaxing the reader in the desired direction, that of understanding.I gave many books this year a perfect score, yet is there such a book as a perfect one Outgrowing God is perfect in the way it settles into our minds and grabs the remote, to be metaphorical What a great book to read on Christmas


  3. says:

    Outgrowing God A Beginner s Guide was a great read, and it was incredibly thought provoking And despite the fact that I m no beginner in the process of outgrowing God, I am so glad that I bought it, and it has inspired me to readof Dawkins works.When I was a merely a child, I believed in God I believed every word that was written in The Bible, I relentlessly attended church, sat through service after service like my life solely depended on it I said my prayers umpteen times a day, pray Outgrowing God A Beginner s Guide was a great read, and it was incredibly thought provoking And despite the fact that I m no beginner in the process of outgrowing God, I am so glad that I bought it, and it has inspired me to readof Dawkins works.When I was a merely a child, I believed in God I believed every word that was written in The Bible, I relentlessly attended church, sat through service after service like my life solely depended on it I said my prayers umpteen times a day, praying for forgiveness on my knees to a being that doesn t exist, just because I uttered Shit under my breath to my Mum I was even told the ridiculous statement that God is watching me all the time and keeping me safe Thinking back now, I cannot believe that I actually thought that stories like Adam and Eve and that the world was made in seven days were solid history, but I did, and I never challenged it, and my teachers carried on regardless, while I carried on soaking all of it up like a sponge.My Mother was raised in a happy, but strict Catholic household, and my Father is an atheist In this case, I think my Mum got the upper hand in how my sister and I were raised where religion was involved I definitely don t blame my parents for how they chose to raise me in regards to Catholicism, and they did how they saw fit at that time, but it has taught me that I should do things differently Once I left school, I doubted my belief in God, and I turned to books as a source for the answers to my questions I realised that I no longer believed in God, and that not everything I read in books were necessarily true, and a prime example of one of those books is, The Bible.Back again when I was young and naive I believed we were all made by God, and he was our designer That was before I learned all of the science and evolution behind everything, which obviously makes a lotsense There have been many times I have discussed evolution with individuals that have a certain faith, and sometimes, they have been almost frightened of even daring to think evolution exists I thought Dawkins made the right decision in quoting passages from The Bible to support his argument for the Christian God, who he makes out to the reader is utterly appalling in many ways Without supportive material, the argument is pretty skeletal and flimsy I enjoyed the question Do we need God in order to be good The very obvious answer to this is a straight up no No, I do need a God in order to be good and I do not need to follow The Ten Commandments each day in order to be a good person It s a shame I didn t know that while I was in school The section on evolution is amazingly interesting, and Dawkins really does go into great detail There are also some gorgeous colour photographs to support his discussion Although this book isn t a huge book, I think it is a valuable companion which tells us why we don t need God to explain our beautiful world, and logical thinking is a better source of obtaining morals instead of referring to The Bible all the time This was such an interesting read, and I shall be recommending it to my Dad next


  4. says:

    Everyone wants to compare this book to The God Delusion, for obvious reasons But I would rather review it on its own merits, for what it is, recognizing its purpose and intended audience While the content is similar, there are differences it coversof the Bible, has expanded coverage of morality, and is aconcise and focused presentation of atheism and evolution that isaccessible to a younger audience or to the beginning skeptic In that regard, it deserves its own treatment, Everyone wants to compare this book to The God Delusion, for obvious reasons But I would rather review it on its own merits, for what it is, recognizing its purpose and intended audience While the content is similar, there are differences it coversof the Bible, has expanded coverage of morality, and is aconcise and focused presentation of atheism and evolution that isaccessible to a younger audience or to the beginning skeptic In that regard, it deserves its own treatment, which is as follows Outgrowing God is a concise yet comprehensive statement of atheism and the perfect resource for the burgeoning skeptic or the individual struggling to escape the intellectual prison that is religion Dawkins a reliably great writer begins the book by reminding us that thousands of gods have been invented throughout history, and that humanity is getting ever closer to the correct answer from polytheism belief in many gods to monotheism belief in one god to atheism belief in no gods Dawkins shows how it s noreasonable to have faith in any one particular religion or god over any other, and that the fact that we all grow up believing in the religion in which we were raised should raise some red flags Today s religion is tomorrow s mythology, just as belief in Zeus, once considered to be real, is now known to be fiction Dawkins proceeds to dissect the Old and New Testaments to reveal the inconsistencies, contradictions, historical and scientific inaccuracies, plagiarism, and immoral teachings that permeate the text All signs point to the Bible as a man made document, pieced together with the fragments of distorted history, borrowed mythology, and the manufactured fulfillment of old prophecies, translated through multiple languages and written by scientifically illiterate authors it was written centuries before the advent of modern science While there s nothing wrong with mythology, as Dawkins admits, there s no reason to elevate the Bible over the myths of ancient Greece, Egypt, Babylonia, India, or anywhere else But it s not only that the Bible is an unreliable source of history it s also oftentimes an extremely unpleasant and immoral text This is why Penn Jillette wrote, When someone is considering atheism I tell them to read the Bible first and then Dawkins Outgrowing God second only to the Bible Is this fair Well, consider the following verse, which is representative of the bloodlust found throughout the Bible However, in the cities of the nations the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes Completely destroy them the Hittites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites as the Lord your God has commanded you Deuteronomy 20 16 And how about Now kill all the boys And kill every woman who has slept with a man, but save for yourselves every girl who has never slept with a man Numbers 31 17 18 The Bible is full of barbaric punishments for petty crimes, genocidal ethnic cleansing, and treating women and girls as property, with dozens of verses similar to the ones above So yes, Dawkins treatment of the Good Book isthan fair.Dawkins concludes the first part of the book with a few chapters on morality He shows that, rather than receiving our morality from the Bible, we apply our pre existing moral codes to the Bible to decide which verses to ignore like stoning homosexuals to death , which to commend, and how to interpret them Dawkins shows that there are far better explanations for morality and where it comes from including biological, psychological, cultural, and social explanations than the simplistic assertion that good and bad acts are objectively decreed from an invisible supernatural entity It s plainly obvious that morality evolves, and has evolved far ahead of the brutality found in scripture Still, whether or not God exists is independent of whether or not we require Him Her It They for moral behavior Is there evidence that God exists, beyond the unreliable mythology that is the Bible Dawkins answers this question in the second part of the book, which is devoted to science and evolution This is familiar territory to anyone who has read Dawkins previous works, yet it isconcisely expressed He systematically demonstrates the superfluousness of the God hypothesis with clarity and fascinating examples from biology The complexity of life cannot be explained by random chance, or by the invocation of a designer that must necessarily becomplex than the life it is meant to explain, but rather by the slow accumulation of mutations carried out over immense periods of time subject to the constraints of natural selection Chapter 11 is one of the best parts of the book, where Dawkins posits evolutionary explanations for religion itself Superstition, hyper active agency detection, and overactive pattern detection is built into the human mind for good evolutionary reasons it s better to think the rustling of leaves is a lion and be wrong than to ignore it and be eaten The unfortunate byproduct of this is a tendency to see agency everywhere, manifested as belief in gods, spirits, angels, demons, mystical forces, etc Dawkins wrap up the book with a reminder that the history of science is a relentless assault on common sense Wherever things have seemed most obvious the earth is stationary, life requires a designer , science has shown otherwise It will continue to do so With evolution as an incontrovertible fact there is no alternative explanation that makes any sense, unless you really believe that all animals just popped into existence via divine creation , the religious have retreated into the mysteries of physics as proof of God s existence Don t follow them As Dawkins wrote, If you think you ve found a gap in our understanding, which you hope might be filled by God, my advice is Look back through history and never bet against science


  5. says:

    First half of book is basically the god delusion restated ,concise , framed better, Dawkins has either learned himselfabout the religions or has had help writing on those bits maybe both.Second half is a gorgeous yet simple introduction and overview on evolution The mix prompts questions that should be asked Thus belongs on every young person s bookshelf For me as an adult, I read the god delusion and that was my first of many steps out of religion I read TGD as a Christ First half of book is basically the god delusion restated ,concise , framed better, Dawkins has either learned himselfabout the religions or has had help writing on those bits maybe both.Second half is a gorgeous yet simple introduction and overview on evolution The mix prompts questions that should be asked Thus belongs on every young person s bookshelf For me as an adult, I read the god delusion and that was my first of many steps out of religion I read TGD as a Christian, I read this book as an atheist The former I read in secret and with trepidation, the latter with a relaxed joy


  6. says:

    This was pretty disappointing His opening point is that the existence of many false religions means all religions are false.Does the existence of many falsified scientific theories mean all theories should be discarded Of course not.Dawkins attacks the biblical canon by conflating the recognition of the canon at Nicea with determining the canon Recognizing what was received as authoritative scripture is not the same as picking choosing scripture.He argues that because people tend to believe t This was pretty disappointing His opening point is that the existence of many false religions means all religions are false.Does the existence of many falsified scientific theories mean all theories should be discarded Of course not.Dawkins attacks the biblical canon by conflating the recognition of the canon at Nicea with determining the canon Recognizing what was received as authoritative scripture is not the same as picking choosing scripture.He argues that because people tend to believe the religion dominant in the society around them, all religion is wrong Ironically, Dawkins himself is proof that his conclusion is false as his parents were Christian missionaries This argument also ignores the spread of Christianity in China, the Middle East, Africa, and it s initial spread in the Roman Empire for the first 300 years before Constantine Again, this phenomenon says nothing about the veracity of the religious view held.Dawkins regularly appeals to a class he calls serious scholars which, assumably, refers to scholars that only share his views but you can t know for sure because there s NO references or bibliography to see where Dawkins gets his information.He then expresses his hatred for the OT and NT but it s built entirely on ignoring the context of the passages Just one conversation with a theologian would ve helped eliminate such comments.He also conflates the descriptive value of diverse ethics around the would to suggest there is no prescriptive moral standard Again, non sequitur.Most disappointing was the second half of his book on evolution He does a great job of explaining the details of complex creatures but then he arbitrarily assumes his omniscience by suggesting that because he and others can t figure out why something was designed a particular way, they are therefore badly designed.The mechanism for explaining God away in this book is that, given enough time, small mutations can accomplish what we typically attribute to God apparent design The argument goes something like We walk out to my car, I explain to you how all the parts work within the system After doing so, I expect you to believe the car had no manufacturer and that traffic laws ethics emerged from within the car itself We both know that no amount of describing the system explains why the system exists or why meaning exists within the system.Nothing he provides in this book challenges Christianity


  7. says:

    Nothing new here, and nothing interestingDawkins has written all this before He s said many times, for example, that any God who could create the cosmos must be as complex would have to becomplex than the cosmos, and would need his existence explained just as much He s been answered many times, but he only repeats himself It s as if there were no intellectual world outside his own head as if intellectual integrity never called for a thinker to respond to other thinkers The same goes f Nothing new here, and nothing interestingDawkins has written all this before He s said many times, for example, that any God who could create the cosmos must be as complex would have to becomplex than the cosmos, and would need his existence explained just as much He s been answered many times, but he only repeats himself It s as if there were no intellectual world outside his own head as if intellectual integrity never called for a thinker to respond to other thinkers The same goes for virtually all his theologizing I m not a scientist so I will not speak to most of his science, though I ll turn to one piece of it very shortly It s all recycled material, but sterile, in the sense that it s remained uninfluenced by the living world surrounding it And not just his theology but also his philosophy At the end of the book he says we must live in a Goldilocks universe, one of the rare members of the multiverse that supports life He backs off in the next paragraph as far as admitting it s not proved yet, but that s after he concludes it must be true And why must it be true, even in the complete absence of any physical, empirical evidence Because there s no God And why is he so sure there s no God Because the multiverse theory could be true That s just rationally empty it begs the question of God it s arguing in a circleThere s nothing of interest here that wasn t already in The God Delusion, of which nearly every chapter was given enough response by theists to merit at least some attempt at a counter argument Dawkins doesn t seem to care And because this is old and worked over material, my final comment is that unlike most of what I ve read if Dawkins this book was really quite boring I read it so I could review it for The Stream, which I ll do soon enough Otherwise I d have laid it down after a couple chapters and found a better way to spend my time


  8. says:

    I overheard some co workers one of them being an engineer, ironically having a philosophical discussion, and one of them said that he believed in adaptation, but not evolution The other one agreed and had some ridiculous comments to add It then occurred to me that I may be the only one of my coworkers who believes in evolution That s frustrating, and religion is to blame for them not accepting this scientific fact They should outgrow god I ve read anti religion books by Nietzsche and Hi I overheard some co workers one of them being an engineer, ironically having a philosophical discussion, and one of them said that he believed in adaptation, but not evolution The other one agreed and had some ridiculous comments to add It then occurred to me that I may be the only one of my coworkers who believes in evolution That s frustrating, and religion is to blame for them not accepting this scientific fact They should outgrow god I ve read anti religion books by Nietzsche and Hitchens, as well as The God Delusion by Dawkins, and Outgrowing God is the most compelling argument for atheism I ve read Dawkins s critics say that atheism is a worn out topic, but I think as long as people are denying facts, it needs to be discussed and elaborated on He is right for being passionate about it Although I was already convinced before reading this, this book further convinced me of the importance of atheism, especially with the Multiverse Theory and the god of the gaps This theory wouldn t exist if people hadn t freed their minds of that idea


  9. says:

    It is a good book, specially the first part The second part in my opinion had too many details and very specific examples of evolution which I consider were a bit repetitive.Nevertheless, the author is very clear to expose the arguments and it s an easy reading.


  10. says:

    An excellent, concise, clear argument for atheism Written with humour, it gives clear logical reasoning for turning away from the belief in a higher power, backed up with evidence that is not overly bogged down with scientific jargon It allows opportunity for further reading It really is the ideal introduction to atheism.


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