Religion and Traditions of Inquiry

  • Brandon Daniel-Hughes


Section 5.1 argues that religious traditions are best understood as fallible inhabited experiments and embodied hypotheses. The social and existential security religious communities’ promise is only ever provisional, but they offer a wealth of resources for pursuing further avenues of inquiry within their boundaries and a rich store of semiotic resources for deeply engaging the world. Section 5.2 addresses the efficiency of inquiry and expands upon Peirce ’s treatment of sentiment, commonsense, and instinct. The argument is applicable both to religious and non-religious communities but is particularly relevant when inquiry involves matters of vital importance. Section 5.3 examines religious communities of inquiry, especially enduring, traditional, large-scale religious communities. Venerable religious traditions of inquiry are best understood as deeply invested experimental explorations of the value of engaging the world with a suite of culturally mediated habits and signs. These traditions cultivate and conserve a variety of vague signs, rituals, myths, and habits for engaging the world. The vagueness of the signs, it argues, enables relatively rich inquiry and flexible engagement within a multitude of contexts. Section 5.4 argues that religious traditions also become venerable through developing interpretive habits and signs that encourage correction and reform through disciplines of self-control.


Venerable traditions Vagueness Sign networks Fallibilism Indices Ultimate orientation 


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© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brandon Daniel-Hughes
    • 1
  1. 1.John Abbott CollegeSainte-Anne-De-BellevueCanada

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