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What’s Happening to Atheism

New Year’s Eve, 1999. The next day would be the year 2000—the new millennium! The world was swept by rumors of what would happen. The Y2K virus would cause global computer networks to crash. Airliners would be stranded in mid-air, with nowhere to land. Religious sects predictably proclaimed the end of the world. The British were told that the hottest party in town was seeing in the new year at the Millennium Dome.
With such colorful prognostications around, less media attention was given to another prediction about the new millennium. For some secular pundits, a new era would dawn, in which religion would evaporate as a significant force in human culture. Globalization would lead to secularization. Humanity would leave behind its religious ideas as children abandon their innocent and naïve belief in Santa Claus. It was time to grow up. As Richard Dawkins put it, “Humanity can leave the crybaby phase, and finally come of age.”. . .

Alister McGrath

Alister McGrath, Teacher, serves as Andreas Idreos Professor of Science and Religion at the University of Oxford and the Director of the Ian Ramsey Center for Science and Religion. He is also the Senior Research Fellow at Harris Manchester College in Oxford, the President of the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics and associate priest in Cotswolds for a group of village parishes (Church of England.) McGrath’s best known books include The Twilight of Atheism, The Dawkins Delusion?, Dawkins’ God: Genes, Memes, and the Meaning of Life, and A Scientific Theology. He received his MA and DPhil from Oxford University.

 

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