Modern atheists view themselves as brave pioneers, facing the truths of man’s lowly origins and the fact of death with heroic acceptance. They profess to be guided not by blind faith but by the bright (though not infallible) flame of reason. They derive their morality not from external commandments but from an inwardly generated calculus of costs and benefits. Setting aside hopes for eternity, they are dedicated to the welfare of mankind. Science is their watchword, and its practical achievements are the only “miracles” they are willing to countenance. It is an impressive vision, and in the rest of this book I will examine it carefully to see how much sense it makes of our world and whether it can enrich our lives.