Probability in the Philosophy of Religion

OUP Oxford (2012)
Abstract
At a time in which probability theory is exerting an unprecedented influence on epistemology and philosophy of science, promising to deliver an exact and unified foundation for the philosophy of rational inference and decision-making, it is worth remembering that the philosophy of religion has long proven to be an extremely fertile ground for the application of probabilistic thinking to traditional epistemological debates. This volume brings together original contributions from twelve contemporary researchers, both established and emerging, to offer a representative sample of the work currently being carried out in this potentially rich field of inquiry. Grouped into five sections, the chapters span a broad range of traditional issues in religious epistemology. The first three sections discuss the evidential impact of various considerations that have often been brought to bear on the question of the existence of God. These include witness reports of the occurrence of miraculous events, the existence of complex biological adaptations, the apparent ‘fine-tuning’ for life of various physical constants and the existence of seemingly unnecessary evil. The fourth section addresses a number of issues raised by Pascal’s famous pragmatic argument for theistic belief. A final section offers probabilistic perspectives on the rationality of faith and the epistemic significance of religious disagreement.
Keywords argument from design  confirmation theory  disagreement  evidence  faith  fine-tuning  problem of evil  miracles  Pascal’s wager  probability
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ISBN(s) 0199604762   9780199604760
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