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Books > Religion & Spirituality > Religious Studies > Philosophy > 0231163541
  1. The Problem with God: Why Atheists, True Believers, and Even Agnostics Must All Be Wrong
    The Problem with God: Why Atheists, True Believers, and Even Agnostics Must All Be Wrong
    The Problem with God: Why Atheists, True Believers, and Even Agnostics Must All Be Wrong
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  2. The Problem with God: Why Atheists, True Believers, and Even Agnostics Must All Be Wrong

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (7 reviews)
    Price R574.00

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Whether people praise, worship, criticize, or reject God, they all presuppose at least a rough notion of what it means to talk about God. Turning the certainty of this assumption on its head, a respected educator and humanist shows that when we talk about God, we are in fact talking about nothing at all―there is literally no such idea―and so all of the arguments we hear from atheists, true believers, and agnostics are and will always be empty and self-defeating.

Peter J. Steinberger's commonsense account is by no means disheartening or upsetting, leaving readers without anything meaningful to hold on to. To the contrary, he demonstrates how impossible it is for the common world of ordinary experience to be all there is. With patience, clarity, and good humor, Steinberger helps readers think critically and constructively about various presuppositions and modes of being in the world. By coming to grips with our own deep-seated beliefs, we can understand how traditional ways asserting, denying, or even just wondering about God's existence prevent us from seeing the truth―which, it turns out, is far more interesting and encouraging than anyone would have thought.

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Peter Steinberger
Columbia University Press
Columbia University Press
Columbia University Press
Columbia University Press
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Peter Steinberger is a noted philosopher who in this book tackles the problem of God's existence. As a philosopher, he holds himself to extremely high standards: his arguments are constructed to be as convincing as possible, if not irrefutable. He is, moreover, an accessible writer who expresses his ideas in a basic, if somewhat chatty, style. The book is easily read by anyone with an interest in religion, God, atheism, and related subjects.

Steinberger's fundamental argument is that the question of God's existence is such a contradiction in terms that it makes no sense for us to bother asking it. We live in a world of cause and effect, in which our lives and the material world around us are shaped by events which cause other events to happen, in an infinite chain, or at least as long as the earth exists. Our thinking is entirely predicated on the reality of cause and effect, which prompts us to posit that the universe must have had a creator, a First Mover, who put... Read more
Compared to guys like Dawkins on the Left and Aquinas on the right, Steinberger is just plain (there is no word for it): "UNSTRIDENT." More like a Zen master than a philosopher, he keeps contradicting himself every time he leads us to believe he "gets" something. His essential message is one of humility: linear cause-effect minds sometimes take on too much! He's fun, witty, and uses examples that baby boomers will crack up reading about, from Hopalong Cassidy to Spock. He's serious, without taking himself too seriously. Refreshing compared to the shouts on the other three sides of this debate!

Actually, if faith is a kind of trust, he could probably write a similar book about science, although I think Taleb probably already did that with Black Swan!

As to God-- without actually realizing it, his argument is amazingly close to some Islamic philosophy and Hadith (traditions). They go like this: 1. God is actually unknowable. We never can, never have, and never will... Read more
I claim no expertise in the study of religion nor philosophy but appreciate the thinking of one who has. This highly educated and professionally qualified author tells us its a waste of time looking for God and evidence thereof. Because we humans are programmed to think logically looking always for cause and effect, we can't avoid looking for whatever was there before..well you know what came just before we know whatever we now know. Sounds a little like Donald Rumsfeld explaining our military intelligence in the Iraq war..."known knowns and unknown knowns".

He posits this conundrum is unavoidable because "Alas, there is, sorry to say, no idea of God. God is Conceptually Impossible." Nonetheless, we should all be comforted in realizing after death there is something, just not what religion nor the negation thereof argue about, so all such debates are a total waste of human energy.

I particularly enjoyed the extensive explanatory footnotes, the... Read more
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