A slim, textually dense attempt to change the conversation between believers and atheists.
Posner explores ancient and modern questions about God’s existence and power from the point of view of philosophical arguments regarding being, ontology and more. Along the way, he coins a variety of new or unusual terms, including “tranjects,” (transcendental objects) “obvents,” (object-events) and “primaverse,” which is seemingly a complement to multiverse (multiple universe). The book’s primaverse theory suggests that God resides (as far as such a statement is possible) in a place of essential being, a place that has always existed, as compared with an emergent being, or coming into being moment to moment. This is the author’s foundation for undermining underlying assumptions about the necessity of God’s existence and statements about God’s nature. While obviously conversant in the philosophers and theologians key to his argument, Posner provides little groundwork to set up his position, with the exception of briefly referencing important past thinkers. In contrast to the heavy prose, the book occasionally assumes a light tone, e.g., one section is called “Let’s Get Metaphysical,” and each chapter begins with a short play in the style of a Socratic dialogue. These tonal shifts give the book something of an identity crisis. His argument is difficult to enter into and engage with, potentially undermining its effectiveness. Posner’s work is likely to overwhelm lay readers, and his lack of citations may put off academics. Posner is clearly widely read and knowledgeable about the topic, but he could go further in helping readers along. Those willing to do their own heavy lifting regarding the history of philosophy and theology may be able to grapple with Posner’s book; readers not interested in doing so may be left in the dust.
Complex and alienating, but a bold effort.