- Why I Am Not a Christian
"Why I Am Not a Christian" is an
essayby the British philosopher Bertrand Russellhailed by " The Independent" as "devastating in its use of cold logic," [ [http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0415325102 Amazon entry] ] and listed in the New York Public Library's list of the most influential books of the 20th century. [ [http://www.nypl.org/research/chss/events/booklist.html New York Public Library website] ]
Originally a talk given
March 6, 1927at BatterseaTown Hall, under the auspices of the South London Branch of the National Secular Society, it was published that year as a pamphletand was later published, with other essays, in the book, "Why I Am Not a Christian: And Other Essays on Religion and Related Subjects" (ISBN 0-671-20323-1).
Russell considers a number of logical arguments for the existence of God, including the
cosmological argument, the natural-law argument, the teleological argumentand moral arguments. He also goes into specifics about Christian theology, alleging defects in Jesus's teaching and his moral character, in particular because Jesus believed in helland everlasting punishment.
Russell also expresses doubt over the historical existence of Jesus and questions the morality of religion: "I say quite deliberately that the Christian religion, as organized in its churches, has been and still is the principal enemy of moral progress in the world. "cite web |last=Russell |first=Bertrand
url=http://www.positiveatheism.org/hist/russell0.htm| title="Why I Am Not a Christian"| accessdate=2007-04-20] Russell concludes:
Related works by other authors
Why I Am Not a Muslim", by Ibn Warraq, is also critical of the religion in which the author was brought up — in this case, Islam. The author mentions "Why I Am Not a Christian" towards the end of the first chapter, stating that many of its arguments also apply to Islam.
*"Why I Am Not a Hindu", a 1996 book in a similar vein by
Kancha Ilaiah, an activist opposed to the Indian caste system.
*"Why I Am Still a Christian" is a book by Catholic theologian
Hans Küng, published in 1987.
* [http://xahlee.org/Periodic_dosage_dir/_p2/why_not_christian.html Complete text with annotations]
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