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Daniel Dennett

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This author of the 1991 bestseller Consciousness Explained establishes his atheism in his book Darwin's Dangerous Idea: "The kindly God who lovingly fashioned each and every one of us and sprinkled the sky with shining stars for our delight -- that God is, like Santa Claus, a myth of childhood, not anything a sane, undeluded adult could literally believe in. That God must either be turned into a symbol for something less concrete or abandoned altogether" (p.18).