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The God Delusion

Written by: Richard Dawkins
Narrated by: Richard Dawkins, Lalla Ward
Length: 13 hrs and 52 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (14 ratings)
Regular price: ₹820.00
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Publisher's Summary

Despite the potential sensitivity of the topic, Richard Dawkins unashamedly applies his characteristically blunt approach to The God Delusion. His decision to narrate this audiobook himself only serves to make it all the more exhilarating an experience.

You heard it here first! This unabridged audiobook is only available as a digital download from Audible.

Winner of the British Book Awards, Author of the Year, 2007.
Shortlisted for the British Book Awards, Book of the Year, 2007.
Longlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize, 2007.
Winner of the Audiobook Download of the Year, 2007

Richard Dawkins is considered to be one of the world's top intellectuals. As the author of many classic works on science and philosophy, he has always asserted the irrationality of belief in God and the grievous harm it has inflicted on society. He now focuses his fierce intellect exclusively on this subject, denouncing its faulty logic and the suffering it causes.

While Europe is becoming increasingly secularized, the rise of religious fundamentalism, whether in the Middle East or Middle America, is dramatically and dangerously dividing opinion around the world. In America and elsewhere, a vigorous dispute between "intelligent design" and Darwinism is seriously undermining and restricting the teaching of science. In many countries religious dogma from medieval times still serves to abuse basic human rights, such as those of women and gay people - and all from a belief in a God whose existence lacks evidence of any kind.

Dawkins attacks God in all his forms, from the sex-obsessed, cruel tyrant of the Old Testament to the more benign, but still illogical, Celestial Watchmaker favoured by some Enlightenment thinkers. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the ultimate improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry and abuses children. In The God Delusion, Dawkins presents a hard-hitting, impassioned rebuttal of religion of all types and does so in the lucid, witty and powerful language for which he is renowned.

©Richard Dawkins; (P)Random House

Critic Reviews

"A spirited and exhilarating read...Dawkins comes roaring forth in the full vigour of his powerful arguments...." ( Guardian)
"Everyone should read it. Aethists will love Mr Dawkins's incisive logic and rapier wit...." ( The Economist)

What members say

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worth a read

Starts off being a little repetitive and hollow, but picks up pace half way through and ends up being a very interesting read in the end

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    5 out of 5 stars

work of great scholarship, no doubt.

Only one thing I though Dawkins didn't probably discuss is how scores of believers and devouts are also exceptionally good human beings. Of course, I am not hinting a bit towards that the belief or the devotion is necessarily the reason or inspiration behind their goodness.

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Richard Dawkins is The Greatest Human alive.

Richard Dawkins is one of the Greatest Living Beings to ever take a step on Earth. I feels so Blissful and Halcyon to have been able to listen to him and one of his masterpieces - 'The God Delusion'

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Really nice book...Loved it.

Really good arguments and reasoning by author...

I hope it brings new perspective and way of thinking to people who followes faith blindly.

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  • NicholasTod
  • 10-09-13

A Fantastic Read

Would you consider the audio edition of The God Delusion to be better than the print version?

The story telling by Mr Dawkins and Miss Ward is really well done, and adds another dimension to a already well written and intelligent book.

What did you like best about this story?

The best thing about the story is that it shatters the shackles of being controlled by other people, (which whatever people say is the point of religion, to control you) and opens your eyes to the fact that there are no spirits, magic or anything supernatural that you need to fear, we do good because we are good people and we want to, not because there is some judgmental thing watching us. The world is clearer and safer in that knowledge.

Have you listened to any of Richard Dawkins and Lalla Ward ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

N/A but I will.

Any additional comments?

Really is a must read for everyone, I want my children and grandchildren to read this, if people actually stop and think about what we are told by these "people of faith" and look at how so much of the world's problems are because of them and there ever crusade to be in control of your lives, the world would be a much happier place.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Ian
  • 02-11-06

Excellent

Dawkins has been a major contributor to my education on evolution and natural selection. His style and presentation gets complex ideas across with clarity and simplicity. This is an important work that sadly is unlikely to be experienced by many of those who would receive benefit from it. It has all the clarity of Dawkins at his best.

I particularly liked the "two handed" narration. The alternation of voices is used well to give emphasis and variety and never appears contrived in a way that would have been so easy. More audiobook producers of factual titles should consider using this technique

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Troy
  • 02-10-12

Mind expanding

Sure, he was preaching (pun intended) to the converted, but Richard Dawkins also gives you a lot to think about in this great book. I was facilitated as I listened to different theories on why religious folk can be such nut bags. Give it a listen, test your faith or confirm your convictions.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Antony Dayal
  • 31-07-12

Dawkin's slays the Dragon

If you could sum up The God Delusion in three words, what would they be?

Science lights the Dark

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I like the last chapter on how special life is and why you don't need any super natural being to explain why it is. Trillions of beings could have been here instead of you, yet you are here. With those odds who needs the lottery.

Any additional comments?

Dawkin's does not shy away from stating facts that others would shy away from. His arguement, as usual, is well thought out and convincing. He lays out the make believe of religon. To see the world through his world is far more beautiful than one described by the religous.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 31-01-19

Disappointing

Well written and great use of language. well narrated but the book did not live up to the title. It was really just a diatribe ( a very well written diatribe) against the privilege position of religions in society. There were no new ideas (complaints) than many of us were expressing around dinner tables in the 70s. However, as to proof of the existence or non-existence of a god, disappointing.

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  • Kee Ooi Yuen
  • 10-01-19

I signed up for Audible for this!

I signed up for Audible because of this book and it's better than expected! I'm always trapped in my religion that I grew up with and I know something isn't right. This book will definitely answer those questions. Chapter 1 is now done and I'm so excited for the upcoming chapters...

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  • VC
  • 19-01-18

awesome experience

awesome book that expands the frontiers of your understanding. hard hitting style. gripping. finally, sensitive to meaningfully place the personal experience of a larger context

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  • Gillian Mackay
  • 14-08-17

Excellent, brilliant everyone should read this!!!

Excellent, brilliant. Everyone should read this.. More of Dawkins please
didn't want it to end

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  • Thys Dry
  • 27-01-16

Mind blowing

This is hands down one of the most fantastic books I have read so far. For atheists, agnostics, or questioners of religion. This book will wrench open your eyes and force you to see the truth. I would especially recommend this book to religious people who would like to dig deeper in their faith from a scientific perspective. A MUST read.

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  • jaxito73
  • 24-01-16

Consciousness raised

Thoroughly rational, well laid out arguments for the ideas presented. This is not a rally cry for fellow atheists, rather a comprehensive discussion on why there is such a need to be more educated and informed on this critical issue. Lalla's interjections as 2nd narrator is at times jarring but the purpose of punctuating certain points is generally effective.

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  • Jim Vaughan
  • 10-11-16

A Curates Egg -Trapped in a Filter Bubble!

I love Dawkins writings on evolution, and The God Delusion has been a force for good in liberating many unhappy victims of religion and in fighting discrimination against atheism as a valid viewpoint, especially in the US. Perhaps most of all, TGD has stimulated huge debate, and hopefully a critical reexamination of religion and many unquestioned traditional beliefs and practices can only be beneficial.

However, just as Creationists misunderstand Evolutionary theory, to me the book is based on a profound misunderstanding of Religion. At times his polemic is reminiscent of those outraged tabloid headlines that deride all modern art as eg. a "Pile of Bricks" or rock music as "noise". The 'just so' evolutionary explanations of misfiring evolutionary strategies or replicating "viral memes" efface any inherent value, and at no point in the book is he curious as to the actual subjective reasons why anyone might commit themselves to any form of spirituality.

Compare Schleiermacher's definition of religion as "...affection, a revelation of the Infinite in the finite" with Dawkins definition as a "viral memeplex" and I hope the subjective importance of the project of religion becomes clear.

One example of this blinkered view is the central "Ultimate 747" argument in the chapter "Why God almost certainly does not exist". God's existence, Dawkins asserts, is a scientific question. If the universe is so unlikely as to require a Creator, then that Creator must be even more complex and therefore even more unlikely! Thus, who created the Creator becomes an infinite regress of ever increasing complexity and therefore improbability.

A simple refutation might be that given eternity, a Creator of almost infinite improbability is possible. Such is not unlike Nick Bostroms "simulation universe" argument.

For the believer however, Gods existence is NOT a scientific question about the existence of a supernatural being eg. an invisible pink spaghetti monster, but a shift in perspective to a different set of foundational assumptions. While Atheism (and Science) assumes the primordial nature of matter/space/time, Theism asserts the primordial nature of mind/thought (John 1:1-5) transcending space/time. A famous metaphor is "Plato's Cave", where prisoners in the dark stare at shadows. Only by turning around do they see (and approach) the light creating the shadow-play. Such pure awareness is not complex. Complexity arises only with many interacting parts/particles. Such may or may not be how things are, but the "ultimate 747" is a bad argument, because it conflates the methodological materialism of science with a presumption of materialism as the established ontology for both religion and science. It assumes God as one of the shadows on the cave wall, not the light creating them.

At times I think the book deliberately misleads, such as with the chapter on ethics in the Bible. Of course, as the book argues, no modern person takes their ethical values from the examples of Yahweh's various atrocities, the actions of Moses or Abraham, or even from the rules in Leviticus. However, to generalise that to the whole Bible is a fallacy. People may still be challenged by "love your enemies" or "that which you do to the least of my brothers, so you do to me" or the parable of the Good Samaritan. For many it is the contemplation of these, sometimes interpreted within a religious community, that can drive positive change and ethical action. How do you decide what to ignore? Newtons writings on Alchemy are ignored in contrast to his Principia. Why not use similar discernment with the Bible?

Social reformers like William Wilberforce, Martin Luther King, Desmond Tutu or Mahatma Gandhi were clearly inspired by their faith, and while atheists are no less ethical, religion provides a powerful motivation to take action as dedicated service or ethical reform, as the many religiously inspired charities bear witness.

One final bugbear for me was the frequent conflation of faith as "blind faith". Look it up in the OED, and faith is "belief in the absence of PROOF", not the absence of evidence. Thus the theists "leap of faith" into uncertainty, need not be blind, but from the best evidence available. Only fundamentalists seem to share the atheists concept of faith as "blind".

In summary then, "The God Delusion" is a great polemic, but misleading if listened to uncritically. Dawkins is astute in highlighting the backwardness of many religious beliefs (such as the literal truth of the Bible) and he does an excellent job pointing out their irrational absurdities, superstitions and oppressive cruelties. As with all his audiobooks it is also very engagingly read both by the author, and in contrapuntal style by his wife, Lalla Ward.

However, his contempt for religion distorts his judgement, and the book suffers from a blinding confirmation bias, and a failure to think beyond a strictly scientific paradigm. Many of his arguments on close examination turn out to be misleading or based on false assumptions, and explanations based on his own pet theories (e.g. memetics), are not widely accepted as mainstream science. Most importantly, the book fails to even acknowledge, let alone explain as motivation, any inherent subjective spiritual experience, insight or motivation gained through religion.

It's a powerful book, and potentially a persuasive one, but keep your head with you -don't take the validity of any argument simply on "blind faith".

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Craig Hardie
  • Edinburgh
  • 12-10-16

Listen to the preview

Personally I just didn't like the whole double act presentation of this so listen to a preview and see if you can bear with it for a whole book

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Louise
  • CoventryUnited Kingdom
  • 11-02-07

Food for thought

The audio content of this recording is excellently presented by Dawkins and his wife, Lalla Ward, who alternate speaking to very good effect. Dawkins is at his most interesting and persuasive when talking about his specialist subject, evolutionary science, and has got a great deal to say about a wide range of other subjects. The book ranges from theology to social sciences to physics to ethics and the listener picks up some fascinating titbits of information and anecdotes along the way.

Unfortunately, I felt that Dawkins? passion for his cause, combined with his layman?s knowledge on the majority of the themes, leads to several rather irritating and poorly thought-out assertions which diminish the overall message of the book. I was left feeling short-changed after yet another sweeping dismissal of a complicated theological area and desperate to hear the other side of the story.

Overall, this book will open your mind to a wide range of discussion topics and give you much food for thought. I would, however, consider the abridged version as 15 hours of the author?s rhetoric gets a little wearying.

18 of 22 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • Scotland
  • 16-11-16

content good, tone rather snooty

I'm a long term atheist and I enjoyed the scientific and factual points presented in the book but I found the tone of the writing and in particular the performance to be snooty and disparaging, for me this felt unnecessarily childish and detracted from the message.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Valerie
  • Bodmin, Cornwall, United Kingdom
  • 02-12-06

Do not miss this!

This is an excellent book and it works very well with Richard Dawkins reading with his wife Lalla Ward. Dawkins argues against religion and never looses one's interest. He is knowledgable, amusing and devastating.Listen and open your mind if you are religious or listen and bolster your arguments if you are not. Then buy the book and read it and then read Dawkins' other books. He teaches difficult things so even I understand!

57 of 77 people found this review helpful

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  • Rebecca
  • 10-07-08

Far more than a rant !

I've both read it and listened to this, several times now, and thought I'd wait a bit before adding my comments.
As an audiobook, it's superb - well read, and yes, the two voices work.
As a book, the content is remarkable, well-thought through and devastating - yes, Dawkins has strongly held views and a real anger about religion, its sources and its consequences. It is the book that atheists and agnostics who previously weren't sure why they felt what they felt have been waiting for - it articulates all their concerns.
Which is why, religious readers, simply dismissing it is both foolish and counter-productive. If we cannot read it, respect its honesty (even if we disagree) and counter its arguments intelligently and thoughtfully, other than by stamping our feet and sticking our fingers in our ears then we have no right to take the high ground. (And getting personal and vindictive is hardly Christian!)
Know your enemy, and work out the best way to deal with him! Are we really so insecure about our beliefs that we cannot counter Dawkins on his own ground, intellectually?

28 of 38 people found this review helpful

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  • WizardsKnob
  • 30-11-16

Flying Spaghetti Monster here I come

Any additional comments?

I found The God Delusion positively enlightening. I'm an atheist (brought up a Roman Catholic so chose atheism as soon as my mother gave me the option). The case for atheism is given intelligently, humorously, and with no condescension. The facts (for they are facts, not arguments) are very revealing, and hopefully help to remove the blinkers of religious dogma from as many people as possible.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr. Jeff L. Walker
  • uk
  • 17-08-09

the answer to life the universe and eveything

I had been thinking of downloading this book for some time, but as a committed atheist, I wasn?t sure if it would be for me ? I don?t need convincing. I also thought it would be dry. How wrong could I be. I love this book, and the narrative with Richard Dawkins and Lalla Ward is very entertaining. I was reminded of the wonderful writing of Douglas Adams with both readers narrative ? appropriately enough, the book is dedicated to Douglas Adams, a good friend of Dawkins (who met his wife and fellow narrator, Lalla Ward though Douglas Adams).

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

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  • Matthew
  • Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, United Kingdom
  • 18-01-09

At last, the arguments are put forward!

Fantastic book that shows that it's not a crime to question in the belief of god. This book is constantly on my MP3 as it's so easy to go back to and enjoy.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Andrew
  • London, United Kingdom
  • 05-03-07

Devastating critique of religion

Unlike 'Geoff' from Stockton-on-Tees (a previous reviewer of this work), I have had the benefit of actually listening to the book, and having read most of the rest of the Dawkins oeuvre besides. His writing is never less than exhilarating, and very often devastating. For me, the key theme is his critique of religion as an all-purpose excuse-generating mechanism, whether it is providing the justification for wars, discrimination or plain ignorance about the natural world. Alas, those who are too intellectually cowardly to listen beyond the preview will never experience the thrill and/or challenge of Dawkins' arguments.

I also feel that the book benefits from having been presented in this two-narrator audiobook form, and wonder whether Professor Dawkins' publishers have considered giving his other works a similar treatment.

40 of 58 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael
  • 21-05-15

Fantastic!!!

Richard Dawkins - Good looking, beautiful voice and as brilliant as they come! A must listen!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Shirty
  • 12-07-17

Wonderful book and audio

Such an informative, witty, well-reasoned and important book even over 10 years after it was first published. Dawkins and his wife read his book so well!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 23-06-17

Articulated

I was a bit skeptical at first as I thought it would be a bible bashing book but found it well articulated with relevant anecdotes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ryan
  • 12-05-17

Simply stunning

The world would be a better place if everyone read this book. Entertaining, accessible, enlightening and inspiring. A true masterpiece.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Cambell
  • 02-04-16

Brilliant literature for the thinking person

Dawkins puts forward a clear argument and strong reasoning in this book, and the writing comes to life when read by Richard and Lala.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Kristopher
  • 11-12-14

Very informative

Very interesting and helped me understand matters that I knew of, but was not able to accurately form them into relevant ideas of what I do, and do not believe. I think if I read this instead of listen, it would have been to difficult for me to understand. Listening to this gave me opportunity to use my attention on understanding his concepts... Worth a listen but keep an open mind for those of faith.

7 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • J McMillan
  • 02-05-19

Thought provoking

A great read for like minded people with an inquisitive minds. Well read and researched

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  • Annalie
  • 28-03-19

Good reasoning

This book is an excellent read for non-believers, confirming the common sense reasoning that led them to leave their religious beliefs of their upbringing. There are a lot of aha moments in this book!
This book, however, will have very little impact on firm believers, as religious beliefs cannot be disspelled by reasoning. Religion is beyond proof, so it is a futile exercise to try and counteract it with scientific facts and common sense. It is unbelievable that religion is still playing such a huge roll in this day and age. The human is an emotional animal, we are much more irrational than what we think we are.

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  • Joshua R.
  • 23-03-19

exceptional

a great losten and well spoken between both readers. potentially eye opening for anyone raised in religion.

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  • Rob Thompson
  • 25-12-17

Well researched critique of religious dogma in the 21st century.

This book answers for me, all of the questions which arise out of the adherence to blind faith in all its many forms. A carefully constructed and well read expose of religious practice today.