The Epistemology of Religious Experience
By (author) William P. Alston
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Perceiving God by William P. Alston
Book DescriptionIn Perceiving God, William P. Alston offers a clear and provocative account of the epistemology of religious experience. He argues that the "perception of God"-his term for direct experiential awareness of God-makes a major contribution to the grounds of religious belief. Surveying the variety of reported direct experiences of God among laypersons and famous mystics, Alston demonstrates that a person can be justified in holding certain beliefs about God on the basis of mystical experience. Through the perception that God is sustaining one in being, for example, one can justifiably believe that God is indeed sustaining one in being. Alston offers a detailed discussion of our grounds for taking sense perception and other sources of belief-including introspection, memory, and mystical experience-to be reliable and to confer justification. He then uses this epistemic framework to explain how our perceptual beliefs about God can be justified. Alston carefully addresses objections to his chief claims, including problems posed by non-Christian religious traditions. He also examines the way in which mystical perception fits into the larger picture of grounds for religious belief. Suggesting that religious experience, rather than being a purely subjective phenomenon, has real cognitive value, Perceiving God will spark intense debate and will be indispensable reading for those interested in philosophy of religion, epistemology, and philosophy of mind, as well as for theologians.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780801481550
(235mm x 156mm x 20mm)
Imprint: Cornell University Press
Publisher: Cornell University Press
Publish Date: 1-Sep-1993
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author William P. Alston
Beyond 'Justification', Paperback (October 2006)
Much of the writing in Anglo-American epistemology in the twentieth century focused on the conditions for beliefs being "justified." In a book that seeks to shift the ground of debate within theory of knowledge, William P. Alston finds that the...
Realism and Antirealism, Paperback (October 2002)
Throughout the past century, a debate has raged over the thesis of realism and its alternatives. Realism-the seemingly commonsensical view that all or most of what we encounter in the world exists and is what it is independently of human thought-has...
Illocutionary Acts and Sentence Meaning, Hardback (March 2000)
What is it for a sentence to have a certain meaning? This is the question that William P. Alston addresses in this major contribution to the philosophy of language.
Realist Conception of Truth, Paperback (April 1997)» View all books by William P. Alston
One of the most important Anglo-American philosophers of our time here joins the current philosophical debate about the nature of truth. William P. Alston formulates and defends a realist conception of truth, which he calls alethic realism (from...
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