“Perspicuous Representation” and the Analogy of Experience
Allow me to begin with a remark about the concepts “theistic belief” and “rationality.” By theistic belief I understand the totality of a religion or a belief. The concept of God cannot be isolated from this totality; it is enmeshed within it and receives from it its multi-faceted meaning. The attempt to reduce religion to metaphysics is a pathology of the understanding; and even in the philosophy of religion it is important to recall words from their metaphysical to their everyday usage (cf. Ludwig Wittgenstein, Philosophical Investigations, §116). The content of religious belief also adds sensibility and feeling into the mix of this totality; religion depends on image, on art and music. A conceptual reconstruction of theistic belief must come to grips with two phenomena that in my view are essential to its full picture: the unshakableness of religious certitude, which finds its expression in martyrdom, and the phenomenon of prayer and worship. Both these things exclude our interpreting theistic belief as just another hypothesis.
KeywordsReligious Belief Ethical Virtue Religious Faith Language Game Moral Knowledge
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