Progressive Atheism shows how atheism can make progress in humanity’s future. It presents a new way of arguing that God doesn’t exist, based on a portrayal of God so positive that you may sometimes wonder whether you’re reading the thoughts of a believer. Starting with the simple idea that our understanding of what it takes to be a good person has changed and grown over time, J. L. Schellenberg argues that our understanding of the goodness of God must now change too. Masculine images of God as haughty King or distant Father have to be replaced by God as a paragon of nonviolence and relational openness. This more evolved conception of God is incredibly attractive and admirable. But by the same token it has become less believable. Each moral advance, applied to God, makes it even clearer that such a being would never create a world like ours. Atheists have often approached the subject of God with disdain. Progressive Atheism proves that admiration will be far more powerful.
Schellenberg’s reasoning is very clear, and his writing is beautiful. The book is written in an accessible way; I believe it would make an excellent textbook in many undergraduate philosophy of religion courses ... Schellenberg is rightly celebrated for encouraging philosophers and theologians to take seriously the idea of the deep future. ― Reading Religion
Over the last quarter century, atheism has come out of the closet and is today more acceptable―even respectable―than at any time in history. But the militancy often associated with the strong atheism that asserts God’s nonexistence is not enough to build a movement. We need a progressive atheism, which the philosopher J. L. Schellenberg provides us with in this brilliantly-argued and clearly-written book. Progressive Atheism is must reading for everyone interested in these ultimate questions ― Michael Shermer, Presidential Fellow, Chapman University, USA Published On: 2019-03-28
How can atheism be "progressive"? First, by being based on moral progress. Such progress alters our understanding of God's perfect goodness, yielding an idea of God that is "too good to be true." Second, by freeing us to explore new spiritual terrain. Schellenberg acts as guide, ending the book with a fascinating tour of a variety of live religious possibilities. For open-minded readers, this book is a breath of fresh air. Highly recommended! ― Paul Draper, Professor of Philosophy, Purdue University, USA Published On: 2019-04-24
About the Author
J. L. Schellenberg is Professor of Philosophy at Mount Saint Vincent University, Canada.