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  1. 1. 9-28
  2. 2. faith and reason <ul><li>is faith compatible with reason? </li></ul><ul><li>are faith and reason antagonistic? </li></ul><ul><li>are they simply different ways of attaining knowledge within different domains? </li></ul>
  3. 3. pragmatic faith <ul><li>pascal’s wager </li></ul>finite gain infinite loss and finite gain i do not believe finite loss infinite gain and finite loss i believe God does not exist God exists
  4. 4. problems for pascal <ul><li>belief has moral ramifications </li></ul><ul><ul><li>one has a moral duty to not only act in a certain way but also to believe in a certain way. this is because belief has the function of guiding actions such that if one fails to believe properly then one fails to act properly </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. willing to believe <ul><li>faith has the ability to be self-authenticating </li></ul><ul><ul><li>a runner believing he will win a race, even without evidence, helps provide the impetus for doing just that (because, again, belief has the function of guiding action) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>does this work with God? is our belief self-authenticating in that it make it more likely that God will exist? </li></ul><ul><li>can one even do such a thing as “willing” a certain kind of belief in this strong volitional sense? </li></ul>
  6. 6. fideism <ul><li>two versions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>faith operates in a domain where reason has no power; in religious domain faith is above reason </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>faith and reason are in conflict such that any attempt to use reason in spiritual matters is bound to result in absurdity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>though it is not necessary to hold both positions, it is possible to do so </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. faith is above reason <ul><li>genuine faith appears when reason reaches its end ([p], 124) </li></ul><ul><li>basing one’s faith in reason results in faith being increased or diminished depending on the information available at one time. in such a case, one’s faith could even be destroyed by some new piece of evidence. </li></ul><ul><li>but if evidence does not matter here, why does it matter elsewhere? why is it that God’s existence is so radically different from the chair’s? </li></ul>
  8. 8. compatibility of faith and reason <ul><li>reformed epistemology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>stands in contrast to traditional foundationalism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>holds that all propositions must be basic or grounded in in other basic propositions </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>to be basic is to be: 1) self-evident; 2) incorrigible; 3) evident to the senses </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>third premise is often not a part of a foundational account of knowledge; we can be wrong about what we sense </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>holds that propositions can be considered properly basic because of their position in a person’s noetic structure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>may not be that God’s existence is actually basic. rather, it may be that other beliefs that necessarily entail such are basic (i believe that God is speaking to me). </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. issues with reformed epistemology <ul><li>regardless of whether or not some proposition is central in one’s noetic structure does not remove its possibility for change </li></ul><ul><li>are we not obligated to consider the arguments of our peers before declaring certainty? </li></ul><ul><li>what prevents us from asserting some other belief as serving as central to, and, as such, foundational for, our noetic structure? in other words, how does this actually justify our belief that God exists? </li></ul><ul><li>is such a belief truly central in our web of beliefs? </li></ul>