The Cure-for-Christianity Library©

The atheist publishing surge since the 1990s

Mark Twain famously suggested that “…the best cure for Christianity is reading the Bible.” Penn Jillette added a little more bite: “Reading the Bible is the fast track to atheism.” But these days, there is much more homework available. I had hoped to include a bibliography in my book when it was published two years ago, but there wasn’t space.

That omission, however, turned out to be a blessing. In any book, of course, a bibliography is frozen, but that is not the case when it can be continually updated on a website. I decided to include the resources for further study and research on my book’s website, and rechristened it The Cure-for-Christianity Library©.

I add new titles as I come across them. The count has now passed the 275 mark. Of course, this is dwarfed by the continual deluge of Christian devotional literature, but we can appreciate this phenomenon for what it is: Very few of the titles predate the 1990s.

While I have included a few classic titles, e.g., H.L. Mencken’s Treatise on the Gods (1930), the focus of The Cure-for-Christianity Library© is the atheist publishing surge that has taken place during the last two decades. Of course, the famous atheist titles by Harris, Dawkins, and Hitchens are included, but many other writers took their hint and followed their lead.

I invite the readers of the Debunking Christianity Blog to survey the list and make suggestions about titles that should be included. I want to make this list as robust as possible.

Christianity as a worldview has been destroyed by this impressive body of work. Well, yes, isn’t that ‘elementary, my dear Watson’—how could it be otherwise when we’re dealing with an ancient cult rooted in magical thinking? But people never tire of telling me that Christians won’t read this stuff, so we’re wasting our time.

But don’t fall for this brand of pessimism. Many atheists today were once Christians, but had that aha! moment—“Wow, this doesn’t make sense!” A lot of the people in the pews on Sunday morning are not fanatical believers, who, on a scale to 1-10, rank as solid 10s. Their faith brain damage is too far along. Others Christians rank elsewhere on the scale, for a wide variety of reasons, and curiosity can kick in.

If we want to know why the number of ‘nones’ has been increasing—the folks who admit that they no longer have any religious affiliations—this probably can be credited in part to these many titles that are now available. Some of these books have ended up on best-seller lists, and their authors on talk shows.

Again, please recommend titles to me, but there are a few things to keep in mind:

• Only books will be added; of course there are thousands of appropriate periodicals and articles, but including those is beyond the scope of what I can do at present.

• It is by no means necessary that authors be atheists for their works to be included. Many on the present list may not be atheists, but their works contribute to the falsification of Christianity, and to the deconstruction of theism.

• Please note that the book covers pictured on the right, on the Debunking Christianity Blog, are live Amazon links, and if you purchase via these links, the DC blog earns a few cents on the dollar—which helps the cause a little!

• If you find a book that you want to buy on The Cure-for-Christianity Library© (which also has live Amazon links) please check first if the book is pictured on the DC Blog—and if so, please purchase there!

Of course, institutional Christianity has not been, cannot be destroyed by a pile of books. It is a bloated, fractured bureaucracy; a mighty fortress that has thrived for centuries on delusional thinking. David Fitzgerald has pointed out, however, that “it is not too big to fail.” We can work toward that goal by reminding people that this ‘pile of books’ exists. I intend this on-line catalogue as a handy resource, easily available to atheist, secular, and humanist advocates.

David Madison was a pastor in the Methodist Church for nine years, and has a PhD in Biblical Studies from Boston University. His book Ten Tough Problems in Christian Thought and Belief: a Minister-Turned-Atheist Shows Why You Should Ditch the Faith, has recently been reissued by Tellectual Press with a new Foreword by John Loftus.