Sunday, January 8, 2017

Review of God and the Reach of Reason

God and the Reach of Reason by atheist philosopher Erik J. Wielenberg

Lucidly written explanations of rational theism versus rational atheism.

A book-length, intriguing comparison and contrast of 3 thinkers' views:

#1 What one theist (Oxford professor and writer, C.S. Lewis)
has in common philosophically
--strange as it may seem--
with two very famous atheists
(the Scottish atheist philosopher, David Hume)
and the British skeptic and atheist Bertrand Russell).

#2 How all three disagree on vital points concerning the nature of reality.

This is a very good thinkers' book, written in balanced, measured, lucid, and well-explained prose, explicating difficult philosophical issues and controversies in a user-friendly way.

Wielenberg is respectful toward those with whom he strongly disagrees, which is a wonderful change from the usual, given the tendency of so many leaders to demonstrate intolerance, discourtesy, and even personal attacks. Consider all of the hateful, demeaning political and religious slander and verbal abuse of the recent past by many American leaders.

Only a few times does the philosophical book become obscurely
technical, dry, and boring.

One of the most insightful volumes I read in the last year.

I was also impressed because, unlike most nontheists, Erik J. Wielenberg thinks objective ethics exist, are real. He--contrary to the vast majority of atheists--is a strong moral realist. He is professor of philosophy at DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana.

From his website:
"[A]ll the teaching must still be done by concrete human individuals. The State has to use the men who exist. Nay, as long as we remain a democracy, it is men who give the State its powers. And over these men, until all freedom is extinguished, the free winds of opinion blow." - C.S. Lewis

In the Light,

Daniel Wilcox

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