The Original Atheists: First Thoughts on Nonbelief
The Original Atheists: First Thoughts on Nonbelief is a wonderfully thought provoking compilation of the beliefs, or lack thereof, written by various free thinkers of the eighteenth century including Voltaire, Locke, and Paine, just to name a few. The book starts out introducing the notion of atheism and the thoughts and repercussions of such beliefs held throughout history. The background of atheism that many of the classic thinkers set in motion provide a sound and valid argument that has continued through to today, and these modern writers leave nothing to question and provide readers with a more reasonable answer than those provided from the religious community. The author even includes a section from the writings of Thomas Jefferson who was a strong proponent for rejecting “the notion of any immaterial or spiritual substances.”
The writing in this book is pretty straightforward as it is just pieces of other literature. Some of it is rather dry reading, while others, such as Diderot, are quite entertaining. Overall, I found this a rather enjoyable read and one I would recommend to others.
S.T. Joshi, editor