What has been your favorite "atheist" non-fiction books? or
What books did you read on your path out of religion?
What books to recommend really seems to depend on the direction you want to go. Atheist is just a lack of belief in a God. You can focus on the Christian God or the Abrahamic God (Christian, Muslim, Jewish). I prefer this as most people you are likely to meet fit this group and the basic concept is similar for anyone who claims any knowledge of a supreme being.
I also like a more scientific and fact based study. So Dawkins, Hitchens, and Sam Harris, are my favorites. Hitchens is more my style, but Sam tries to find a conversation to lead others to the same conclusion. More productive probably. The Hitch slap is the best though. Happy reading.
My favorite atheist book still has to be "God Is Not Great," by Chris Hitchens. Hitch was one of the best orators of our time, and, love him or hate him, there is no denying the power of his words and convictions. Books and speeches by Dawkins & Harris are fantastic as well, but Hitch was usually far more truth-arresting than either of those two.
The chief book that lead me away from religion was the bible. I was picked for Christian leadership at 15 yo., but the more I read the Bible the more confused and incredulous I became. I then turned to Catholicism / priests who helped a little but also lead to more questions. Then I looked at other religions and while I liked some of Buddhism and Confucianism, they really were not of much help. I eventually went through Agnosticism to Atheism.
This made me think. At first I thought about the books I've read since I embraced atheism i.e. Hitchens, Harris, Dawkins, Dennett, etc. But from my youngest days as an introvert in western Kansas I was an escape artist living in the fictional worlds of fantasy and science fiction. Marvel comics primarily at first, then books like Michael Moorcocks Eternal Champion series. Roger Zalazny Chronicles of Amber, Frank Herbert's Dune novels, Julian May's Saga of the Pliocene Exile, and many more. I think these forays into being elsewhere did more to make me question reality and authority than any non fiction.
My path out of religion was seamless it was as if I was never really in... I was playing the part given to me by my private catholic school... I did liked the religion courses because it was "old testament"... stories, always liked history. I am selfmade with all the lack of information that it brings. It was like religion never stuck on me. I was kind of teflon like. And once grown never needed that validation. But we must read because there is so much more we can find to our interest and curiosity. The process is never to stop.
Richard Dawkins was a very good influence. The Selfish Gene and The God Delusion are great. Cristopher Hitchens' God is not Great is also very powerful.
These helped me get through the Bible with a critical mindset.
Science books in general are a good way to that path.
Give a person a fish and they will have to eat for a day; teach them how to fish and they will have to eat for life
Every physics, philosophy, and history textbook is an atheist non-fiction book. By reading those, you learn how to fish instead of being given fish.
Also, what you learn by reading these books transcends the subject of theology and will be useful across a broad spectrum of different thoughts.
I personally would stay away from atheist-specific authors, like Dawkins and Hitchens, at least at first. By reading atheist-specific authors, you are being told what to think and, in the case of three of the four horsemen (dennet excluded) you are being told that if you don't believe in what they believe you either mentally deficient or insane... which is not much better than a priest saying that if you don't believe what they believe you are immoral or cursed.
Final piece of advice: YOUTUBE. If you aren't wed to the idea of reading, viewing youtube videos by atheists, agnostics, and theists will give you tons of different viewpoints to fuel your own views and to come to your own conclusions. Unlike reading an atheist- or theist- specific book, by watching tons of youtube videos you are not only not committed to 300+ thesis but also you avoid echo chamber thinking and minimize confirmation bias.
I escaped religion @ age 4 teaching myself to read newspaper comics sounding out my ABCs hounding my dad for help while he read the same paper. ...@ age 5 I equated Easter Bunny xmas Santa all the same lies told to gullible kids dictionaries encyclopedias science books all dwarfed obviously biased xian literature and movies like Ben Hur or 10 Commandments worse than bad science fiction like SuperMan
One automatically has to go to the "Four Horseman" to start. Dawkins - "The God Delusion", Dennett - "Breaking The Spell", Harris - "Letter to a Christian Nation" & "The End of Faith", Hitchens - "god is not Great" & his editing of "the Portable Atheist". Some other good ones are: Barker - "God: The Most Unpleasant Character In All Fiction", Mills - "Atheist Universe", Russell - "Why I Am Not A Christian", Silverman - "Fighting God" & even Douglas Adams - "The Salmon of Doubt" & Navabi's - "Why There Is No God". Also, YouTube has a plethora of "atheist" posters, in whatever mood or complexity strikes your fancy!!
I just don't understand how anyone could be one way or the other. The same question exists that hasn't been answered, what created god, or what created the substance that caused the big bang? Hi! Originally from the mountains of West Virginia. Also, you are so very pretty, "says that coolly."
I cannot imagine why an attractive women like you would find it difficult to date someone. I mean apart from those who are too old (to whom sex would be like shooting pool with a rope) and those who want you to change their incontinence pads, surely, there must still be plenty of men out there who would like to date you?