“Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe” by Erik J. Wielenberg

(redating post originally published on 18 March 2006)

This is the tile of a new book published by Cambridge University Press:


Here is the book description:

Suppose there is no God. This might imply that human life is meaningless, that there are no moral obligations and hence people cando whatever they want, and that the notions of virtue and vice and good and evil have no place. Erik J. Wielenberg believes this view to be mistaken and in this book he explains why. He argues that even if God does not exist, human life can have meaning, we do have moral obligations, and virtue is possible. Naturally, the author sees virtue in a Godless universe as different from virtue in a Christian universe, and he develops naturalistic accounts of humility, charity, and hope. The moral landscape in a Godless universe is different from the moral landscape in a Christian universe, but it does indeed exist. Value and Virtue in a Godless Universe is a tour of some of the central landmarks of this under-explored territory.

I’m extremely impressed with the book. The book is primarily a detailed and devastating response to William Lane Craig, but also includes discussions of other prominent theists who have written about the relationship between religion and morality, including Robert Adams, George Mavrodes, Ed Wierenga, Mark Murphy, Baruch Brody, John Hare, C.S. Lewis, and Gordon Graham. A major plus of this book, IMO, is that it is very easy to read, unlike many of the books in the genre.