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Decoding the Language of God: Can a…
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Decoding the Language of God: Can a Scientist Really Be a Believer?

by George C. Cunningham

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How to write a bestseller in the busy atheist market? Simple. Inform your readers that this is going to be different (more respectful) than books by Hitchens, Dawkins, Harris, or Dennett. Then, write a book that says basically the same things they're saying, without that much difference, but throw in an occasional sneer about "militant" atheists. Overall, not a bad book, but a bit disappointing; I feel the author could have done his homework a bit better on some topics. Also, his brand of strong determinism is a bit too much when one is led to believe that, if he knows your genotype and your "behavioral type" (like we have any idea at all how to determine that with our current state of knowledge), he can predict every decision you will make. I pondered this as I was deciding mustard or mayonnaise on my sandwich, and decided he might be right, but he'd presented no evidence to that effect. Also, he has a bad habit when discussing the gospels of stating that there is "strong evidence" to support a historical Jesus - but never presents any of it, just leaving the reader to take his word for it in a book ostensibly about critical thinking. No matter what position a person holds on that question, this has to be intellectually unsatisfying, and it is a fairly regular technique, not just on that particular question, but on several others, as well. Overall, a rather weakish entry in the genre, and probably not much more acceptable to believers than the books of Dawkins, Hitchens, et al., for all his protestations of being less "shrill" (in this particular genre, shrill usually just means the person calling you that disagrees with you, so this author will no doubt receive the shrill designation from any believers, should they happen to read the book). ( )
  Devil_llama | Feb 20, 2012 |
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Book description
In his best-selling book, The Language of God, Francis Collins the scientist who led the Human Genome Project attempted to harmonize the findings of scientific research with Christian belief. In this response to Collins work, fellow geneticist George Cunningham presents a point-by-point rebuttal of The Language of God, arguing that there is no scientifically acceptable evidence to support belief in a personal God, and much that discredits it. Written with clarity for lay readers, Decoding the Language of God presents a respectful but well-reasoned case against many of the points made, and questions raised by Collins work. Decoding the Language of God also devotes chapters to the unreliability of the Bible as a basis for belief: the conflict between naturalistic explanations of reality, which are anchored in scientific research, and supernatural interpretations, which are not; and the many difficulties in conceptualizing the origins of the universe in terms of a personal God.
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In his bestselling book, The Language of God, Francis Collins--the scientist who led the National Institutes of Health's Human Genome Project--attempted to harmonize the findings of scientific research with Christian belief. In this response to Collins's work, fellow geneticist George C. Cunningham presents a point-by-point rebuttal of The Language of God, arguing that there is no scientifically acceptable evidence to support belief in a personal God and much that discredits it. --from publisher description… (more)

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