50 Reasons – A Review

50 Reasons People Give for Believing in a God by Guy P. Harrison – A Review by OzAtheist

Finished reading the above book on my Kindle today, did I mention I have a Kindle? ๐Ÿ™‚

This is an excellent book for atheists and theists alike. For theists it gives them some questions to answer as to why they may believe in a god. For atheists it provides 50 reasons why believing in a god has no basis in reality, but it does it in a very nice way.

Unlike many other atheist tracts (Dawkins, Hitchens take note) this book is rather polite and not condescending (well not much) to believers. The book has certainly given me some positive ideas on how I should better interact with believers. Harrison makes some very good points about how non-believers might persuade believers to think about their position when it comes to believing in a god.

A fair few of the observations made in this book have been said many times before by many people. However, I think Harrison has done a very good job of putting them all together in the one book, and in a polite and thought provoking (particularly to theists) manner.

Here is the list of 50 reasons why people believe in a god:

  1. My god is obvious
  2. Almost everybody on Earth is religious
  3. Faith is a good thing
  4. Archaeological discoveries prove that my god exists
  5. Only my god can make me feel significant
  6. Atheism is just another religion
  7. Evolution is bad
  8. Our world is too beautiful to be an accident
  9. My god created the universe
  10. Believing in my god makes me happy
  11. Better safe than sorry
  12. A sacred book proves my god is real
  13. Divine justice proves my god is real
  14. My god answers prayers
  15. I would rather worship my god than the devil
  16. My god heals sick people
  17. Anything is better than being an atheist
  18. My god made the human body
  19. My god sacrificed his only son for me
  20. Atheists are jerks who think they know everything
  21. I don’t lose anything by believing in my god
  22. I didn’t come from a monkey
  23. I don’t want to go to hell
  24. I feel my god when I pray
  25. I need my god to protect me
  26. I want an eternal life
  27. Without my god we would have no sense of right and wrong
  28. My god makes me feel like I am part of something bigger than myself
  29. My religion makes more sense than all the others
  30. My god changes lives
  31. Intelligent design proves my god is real
  32. Millions of people can’t be wrong about my religion
  33. Miracles prove my god is real
  34. Religion is beautiful
  35. Some very smart people believe in my god
  36. Ancient prophecies prove my god exists
  37. No one has ever disproved the existence of my god
  38. People have gone to heaven and returned
  39. Religion brings people together
  40. My god inspires people
  41. Science can’t explain everything
  42. Society would fall apart without religion
  43. My religion is so old it must be true
  44. Someone I trust told me that my god is real
  45. Atheism is a negative and empty philosphy
  46. Believing in a god doesn’t hurt anyone
  47. The earth is perfectly tuned to support life
  48. Believing is natural so my god must be real
  49. The end is near
  50. I am afraid of not beleiving

By all accounts all of the above 50 reasons have been told to Harrison, I think I’ve heard most of them myself. Harrison does repeat himself a few times, but I have to forgive him this faux pas as so do most theists!

Overall, a good read, another book that should be compulsory reading by everyone on the planet.



Filed under atheism, beliefs, book review, god, theism

11 responses to “50 Reasons – A Review

  1. Ahh but have you got your convention tickets ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Yes, I have my atheist convention tickets, just need to book flights and accommodation.

  3. Pingback: Christmas is a Religious Festivity « Oz Atheist’s Weblog

  4. Will see you there then mate. And what’s with this rash of postings ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. I’m a logical, ethical, morally correct individual who just happens to be an atheist. I’m also a secular humanist. I’m very proud to be all of the affore mentioned, and totally uninfluenced by anything supernatural. I have few close atheist friends and many religious ones; I tolerate them and they tolerate me. Some of them are even in denial that I don’t profess a belief in the existance of gods because I have such high moral standards, and tell me things like, “You might not believe in ‘God’ but he believes in you.” and “You’re such a good person, you’re religious whether you know it or not.” I am one thing that all my religious friends are not: a hypocrite! As I type this, my wife, a Christian, over-sleeps and will miss church services today. Should I have awakened her?

  6. the chaplain

    I read this book and thoroughly enjoyed it. I agree that Harrison treats believers gently, for the most part. That’s why I felt comfortable giving the book to a theist friend of mine who’s open to questioning her beliefs.

  7. I like the parties and the fun. To hell with the religious overtones. I ignore it.

  8. Sam

    Hey Oz Athiest… thanks for your post! I reckon your on the money in many ways. I don’t celebrate Ramadan because I am not a Muslim. Why would I expect you to celebrate Christmas.

    But I couldn’t disagree with you more on this statement….

    “Much like from birth those same children are taught god is real and that he also rewards the good (promise of heaven) and punishes the bad (fear of hell).”

    This isn’t what Christians believe. Some Catholics are taught this kind of doctrine but Christians have never said that people go to heaven because they are good.

    Anyway… happy new year to you!

  9. Sam

    not sure how that happened but i responded in the wrong blog post. oops.

  10. Between me and my husband we have owned more gadgets over the years than I can count, including GPS units, iPods (classic & touch), etc. I love Kindel, it’s by far the coolest toy I got.  Why? Because I was happy to discover how well-designed and fun it was and how simple it is to use . Make sure you accuire the cover though as it gets scratched pretty easily.

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