Dinesh D’Souza provides in “Great” a summary of the recent history of religion and its increasing popularity–especially Christianity, which the author shares with over 2 billion other people, then succinctly counters atheist claims that religion is useless, unsientific, and in fact harmful to society. Drawing on science himself (though not too successfully), philosophy (D’Souza has a great explanation of Kant), and atheist think itself to refute the claims of atheism, D’Souza has created a very convincing argument for believers.
Though it’s unlikely that this book will change anyones mind who is dead set against religion, it is the most logical and well-thought out defense of the Christian faith since Mere Christianity and offers only a few contradictions. Throughout the book, the author makes solid points refuting atheists such as pointing out Huxley’s quote, “We objected the morality because it interfered with our sexual freedom.” D’Souza responds that atheists don’t find God invisible as much as objectionable and, “atheists aren’t adjusting their desires to fit the truth, they’re adjusting the truth to fit their desires.” D’Souza uses Hume’s skepticism against those who use it to reduce God to wishful thinking, and he successfully analyzes the recent believer/atheist arguments of the watchmaker and anthropic principle. D’Souza also makes it clear that the lack of religious belief has led to the worst crimes of humanity throughout history (Nazi, Soviet, and Maoist terrors to name a few).
This text isn’t without contradiction, however. In the final section, D’Souza relays the benefits of Christianity to society–the religion helps people feel good and comfortable confronting death/tragedy–but this only offers more of a reason why we would invent religion, just as the atheist thinkers purport. The result is a good book about the validity of religion and Christianity, specifically.