"A hard-hitting polemic against religious fundamentalism". (Foreword by Richard Dawkins). 'Thousands of people have written to tell me that I am wrong not to believe in God. The most hostile of these communications have come from Christians. This is ironic, as Christians generally imagine that no faith imparts the virtues of love and forgiveness more effectively than their own. The truth is that many who claim to be transformed by Christ's love are deeply, even murderously, intolerant of criticism. While we may want to ...
"A hard-hitting polemic against religious fundamentalism". (Foreword by Richard Dawkins). 'Thousands of people have written to tell me that I am wrong not to believe in God. The most hostile of these communications have come from Christians. This is ironic, as Christians generally imagine that no faith imparts the virtues of love and forgiveness more effectively than their own. The truth is that many who claim to be transformed by Christ's love are deeply, even murderously, intolerant of criticism. While we may want to ascribe this to human nature, it is clear that such hatred draws considerable support from the Bible. How do I know this? The most disturbed of my correspondents always cite chapter and verse.' So begins Letter to a Christian Nation, Sam Harris' hard-hitting rebuttal of religious fundamentalism and blind belief. With deceptively simple arguments, he demolishes the myths on which Christianity was built, challenges believers to open their eyes to the contradictions of their faith and warns us of the dangers of America's ever increasing unification of Church and State. Sam Harris is the author of the New York Times bestseller The End of Faith: Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason and winner of the 2005 PEN/Martha Albrand Award for First Non-fiction. He is a graduate in philosophy from Stanford University and is now completing a doctorate in neuroscience. He lives in New York.
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It is true as Sam Harris points out that evils have been done by individuals or groups in the name of religion. Where I think Mr. Harris is wrong is when he treats religius people as the sole source of whatever human evil visited upon the innocent. History is filled with genocides and mass murders perpetrated by people who were not religious at all. The Killing Fields in Cambordia is just but one example of such numerous instances.
The second reason why Mr. Harris is biased, he doesn't acknowledge, like any objective analyst would, the good things that have shaped history because of religion. Education institutions, hospitals, refugee services, mediation in peace talks in different parts of the world, advocacy for the voiceless in oppressive regimes... have been and still are areas where religious individuals and institutions have played a crucial role. Unfortunately, all Mr. Harris does is to demonize religion and its adherents as if they are complete losers who never contribute anything good but just go on spreading seeds of suffering wherever they go.
As a scientist who also claims to be a philosopher, Mr. Harris should know better that subjective analysis, as opposed to objective analysis, has no place in either field, since it can never yield objective results or conclusions. An objective analyst weighs both sides but a subjective one is concerned with justifying his/her side, as Mr. Harris indeed does. This is a mockery both to the scientists and philosophers!
Nov 11, 2010
To the point.
I loved this small book message to a "Christian Nation". I only wish the nation would listen.
Oct 21, 2010
Open Your Mind
Should be required reading for all religionists.
That's all I had to say about it, but Alibris won't let me publish my review unless it has at least 50 characters - so here ya go!
Mar 4, 2010
Genuine, but Misguided
The book does not levy any significant arguments against the existence of God. He falls short of proving anything. But by doing all this he exposes the pitfalls of atheism by defining God as who they want him to be and by proving through history that God does not exist.
Oct 14, 2007
Small Package, Big Message
Sam Harris has done a fantastic job of condensing the main topics from his book, The End of Faith (Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason) into a small package that has the power to change people's views on religion in less than one-hundred pages. Readers who want to delve further into the topics presented should read The End of Faith (Religion, Terror, and the Future of Reason). It has an even bigger message.
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