I am in the middle of Chapter Eight of God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens. I can’t believe I haven’t gotten around to it before. It’s actually a superb book, in that Hitchens is just a great writer, and his British tone is absolutely delightful to read.
Chapter Six, on evolution and the creation of man, is the most interesting one (so far) to me for a somewhat different reason. Hitchens makes the argument that evolution is far more miraculous than any supernatural tale of creation, and knocks down arguments about how a creator is required by examining how we get the results but without any direction. It just strikes me how similar it is to the concept of spontaneous order, promoted and defended by the great libertarian philosopher and economist Friedrich Hayek. (A good essay on this is his classic “Cosmos and Taxis“, which regrettably has nothing to do with space taxis. Bummer.)
It does make you wonder if there are connections between libertarianism and atheism there, or at least humanism (or at least science!). Sounds like a more attractive libertarianism to me than the paleotarian variant I see going around so darn much. (As you can imagine, I’m something of a “cosmotarian.”)