While reports of sensory encounters with the divine come from a variety of religious traditions, philosophers as diverse as Thomas Aquinas and Robert Oakes have argued that such experiences of incorporeal divine beings are impossible. Nevertheless, by clarifying various relations among acts of perception, perceptual detections of presence and kinds of perceptual recognition, the sensory perception of imperceptible things emerges as a coherent possibility. So, even if they are essentially unobservable, incorporeal divine beings still fall well within the range of (...) normal human sense perception. (shrink)
In his recent review of the Galileo affair, Pope John Paul II confidently proclaimed the intellectual autonomy of religion, comfortably affirming that the methods and ideas of religion are cleanly separable from those of the sciences. Unfortunately, a close review of the actual details of the Galilean controversy reveals that the lesson to be learned from that famous case is not one of sanitary intellectual compartmentalization, but one of entangling interdependencies among scientific, religious, and philosophical thought.
According to Langdon Gilkey, both religion and science are cognitive enterprises, but they are separated methodologically. As a result, science and religion are concerned with different, though related levels of truth. Against these claims, historical examples are used to argue that scientific and religious explanations cannot be so neatly separated. To the contrary, both fields frequently treat overlapping ranges of data in methodologically opportunistic ways.
Contrary to Hume’s contention, there is no essential connection between miracles and violations of natural laws. Not only may violations of natural law be utterly nonmiraculous, miracles may occur in complete conformity with such laws. Furthermore, a proper understanding of miracles in terms of divine agency places them into an epistemic context where the growth of science does not directly threaten their possibility.
It is commonly thought that w v quine's indeterminacy thesis can be devastatingly undercut by a straightforward survey of the details of one's own linguistic capabilities. However, Because any such survey must depend upon a repudiation of the quinean doctrines used to generate his thesis, Objections based upon introspective evidence remain question begging without a critique of those more central doctrines. Since such a critique would be sufficient in itself to undermine quine's thesis, Objections based upon introspective gleanings must be (...) abandoned as either question begging or superfluous. (shrink)