David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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International Journal of Philosophical Studies 12 (3):271 – 295 (2004)
This paper defends the view that philosophical propositions are merely relatively true, i.e. true relative to a doxastic perspective defined at least in part by a non-inferential belief-acquiring method. Here is the strategy: first, the primary way that contemporary philosophers defend their views is through the use of rational intuition, and this method delivers non-inferential, basic beliefs which are then systematized and brought into reflective equilibrium. Second, Christian theologians use exactly the same methodology, only replacing intuition with revelation. Third, intuition and revelation yield frequently inconsistent output beliefs. Fourth, there is no defensible reason to prefer the dictates of intuition to those of Christian revelation. Fifth, the resulting dilemma means that there are true philosophical propositions, but we can't know them (scepticism), or there are no philosophical propositions and the naturalists are right (nihilism), or relativism is true. I suggest that relativism is the most palatable of these alternatives.
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References found in this work BETA
David J. Chalmers (1996). The Conscious Mind: In Search of a Fundamental Theory. Oxford University Press.
George Bealer, Robert Cummings, Michael DePaul, Richard Foley, Alvin Goldman, Alison Gopnik, George Graham, Gary Gutting, Tery Horgan, Tamara Horowitz, Hilary Kornblith, Joel Pust, E. Rosch, Eldar Shafir, Stephen Stitch, Ernest Sosa & Edward Wisniewkski (1998). Rethinking Intuition: The Psychology of Intuition and its Role in Philosophical Inquiry. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers.
Laurence BonJour (1998). In Defense of Pure Reason. Cambridge University Press.
Immanuel Kant (2007/1991). Critique of Pure Reason. In Elizabeth Schmidt Radcliffe, Richard McCarty, Fritz Allhoff & Anand Vaidya (eds.), Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. Blackwell Pub. Ltd. 449-451.
Saul Kripke (2010). Naming and Necessity. In Darragh Byrne & Max Kölbel (eds.), Philosophy. Routledge 431-433.
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