GOD in their life. In this text, the

GOD By Nigel Warburton
Critical Analysis

The text God by Nigel
Warburton was published in 1992. It is based on the fundamental question that everyone in their life ponders upon-Does
God exist? The belief in the existence of God is extremely essential because it
shapes the way people spend their lives. Thus, this essay is relevant to a
broad range of audience. A theist and an atheist have totally different codes
of conduct and they are motivated by different ideologies to do good or bad in
their life.

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In this text, the author presents various arguments that support the
existence of God and theism as a theory. He has mentioned both Anthropic and
Ontological arguments that present God as omniscient and omnipotent (Graham, Ontological Arguments,
1996 revised in 2016).These theistic and atheistic theories
are discussed to view the topic in practical world.  The author also includes counter-arguments to
all the theories he has mentioned. Criticisms by various atheists are used as a
secondary source in the text for evidences. Towards the end, Warburton briefly
discusses the problem of evil. He also sheds light upon the question that
whether miracles exist or not. The discussion of evil and miracles is relevant
in this debate as they support atheistic and theistic theory, respectively. The
author uses the work of many philosophers to support his text.

Warburton presents arguments both for and against the existence of God.
Every theory that supports theism is first followed by a number of theistic
arguments and then a series of criticisms put forward by atheists. These
arguments are briefly discussed assuming that the reader would have a prior
understanding of them. Warburton presents fewer criticisms given by atheists
than the details he gives for the theistic approach. He is trying to persuade
the reader that God exists but the theories in support are not convincing enough.
For example according to the Fine-Tune argument mentioned the mere fact that
this world turned out to be fit for human survival is enough evidence for the
existence of God which is not substantial. This could be easily contradicted by
the lottery objection (Holt, 2008). By doing this he
also fails to give the reader an unbiased account of arguments. The writer
being neutral would have aided better understanding for the reader. However, the
details given in each criticism is a very important tool to make it easy for
the reader to decide whether the criticism knocks out the arguments or fails to
do so.

Unlike many other philosophical texts this one focuses more on the
theories than the presenters of it. There are many works of philosophy that
inform the reader about contributions of different philosophers but a topical
analysis is rarely given. This is what Warburton has successfully achieved
through this text. The writing style of the author is reader-friendly he has avoided
using too many philosophical terms that a layman cannot interpret. However, the
order of different arguments can be improved upon. The problem of evil and
miracles is a major issue regarding the topic and discussing it briefly at the
end doesn’t do justice to it (Tooley). The text doesn’t
touch upon the major lifestyle changes that one would have to make with the
belief in either of the theories. This would have helped the reader to decide
which theory is more practical (Sztanyo, 2012).

To conclude, Warburton is successful in accelerating the thought process
of his readers. He has managed to make them question their beliefs and come to
an informed decision after a thorough reading of the text. Although, he could
have added some examples or hypothetical situations to explain the theories
mentioned.

 

Graham, O. (1996
revised in 2016). Ontological Arguments. Stanford Encycloedia of Philosophy.

Holt,
T. (2008). The Argument from Fine Tuning. Philosophy of Religion.

Sztanyo,
D. (2012). Practical Atheism and Practical Theism. Warren Christian
Apologetics Center.

Tooley,
M. (n.d.). The Problem Of Evil. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.