The Distinctiveness of the Epistemology of Religious Belief

  • William P. Alston
Part of the Studies in Philosophy and Religion book series (STPAR, volume 19)


To what extent is the epistemology of religious belief different from the epistemology of other areas of our belief and to what extent is it similar? The use of “to what extent?” is calculated. We cannot expect either exact sameness or complete difference. There will be at least some points of identity, for example terms of epistemic assessment such as “justified,” “warranted,” “rational.”1 And at some level of generality the same standards may apply for the application of these terms. But there will also be some points of difference. Most obviously, differences in content will pose different epistemological problems. Beliefs about the nature and activities of a supreme spiritual being cannot be assessed in exactly the same way as beliefs about my front yard.


Religious Belief Epistemic Status Intuitive Judgment Perceptual Belief Christian Faith 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • William P. Alston

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