By David Berman
Probably no doctrine has excited as a lot horror and abuse as atheism. this primary historical past of British atheism, first released in 1987, tries to provide an explanation for this response whereas showing the improvement of atheism from Hobbes to Russell. even supposing avowed atheism seemed unusually past due – 1782 in Britain – there have been covert atheists within the center 17th century. by means of tracing its improvement from so early a date, Dr Berman offers an account of a major and interesting strand of highbrow history.
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Additional info for A History of Atheism in Britain: From Hobbes to Russell
Xxxix). But Cudworth does believe that there are atheists, and hence his arguments against atheism are not 'useless and superfluous'. There is for Cudworth, as for Blackmore and Bentley, an enemy to be routed. Or more exactly, this is their considered view. For even these staunch resisters of the temptation to deny atheism do at times succumb to its enchantment. In the preface to the nut intellectual system Cudworth outlines his programme, telling us that in Chapter 5 he will 'demonstrate the absolute impossibility of atheism, and the actual existence of God' (p.
8t John. The former travelled in the Near East and recounted his experiences in a travel book which was first published in Dutch in 1672 and translated into English in Churchill's Collection of voyages and travels (London, 1704), vol. 3. The latter was the editor and annotator of the two-volume Bohn edition of the Philosophit:al works of John 11Jcke (1854). 8), Locke had argued that as there are and have been atheists, the idea of (;od cannot be innate; ~ecause the idea of God is not universal it cannot be innate.
Suppose that a man had set himself a goal but despite ideal conditions has failed: would not his confessed failure discourage others from following in his path? This will be especially so, I think, in cases where the potential atheists are isolated, where, unlike our confessor, they have no atheistic 'confederates' for companionship and support. How is a potential but lone atheist to know that he is an atheist? It is clear that his difficulties will be increased if he thinks that any vague feelings of guilt, or qualms, cast doubts on his atheism.
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