How Science and Religion Are More Like Theology and Commonsense Explanations Than They Are Like Each Other: A Cognitive Account

Abstract
No one has explored the implications of cognitive theories and findings about religion for understanding its history with any more enthusiasm or insight than Luther Martin. Although my focus here is not historical, I assume that I will be employing cognitive tools in ways that he finds congenial. In the paper’s first section, I will make some general comments about standard comparisons of science and religion and criticize one strategy for making peace between them. In the second section of the paper, I will delineate two cognitive criteria for comparing science, religion, theology, and commonsense explanations. Finally, in the third section, I will suggest that such a comparison supplies grounds for thinking that our longstanding interest in the comparison of science and religion is, oddly, somewhat misbegotten from a cognitive perspective.
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Aku Visala (2008). Religion and the Human Mind: Philosophical Perspectives on the Cognitive Science of Religion. Neue Zeitschrift für Systematische Theologie Und Religionsphilosophie 50 (2):109-130.
Paul Thagard, Cognitive Science. Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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