Reforming reformed epistemology: a new take on the sensus divinitatis

Religious Studies 55 (4):537-557 (2019)
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Alvin Plantinga theorizes the existence of a sensus divinitatis – a special cognitive faulty or mechanism dedicated to the production and non-inferential justification of theistic belief. Following Chris Tucker, we offer an evidentialist-friendly model of the sensus divinitatis whereon it produces theistic seemings that non-inferentially justify theistic belief. We suggest that the sensus divinitatis produces these seemings by tacitly grasping support relations between the content of ordinary experiences (in conjunction with our background evidence) and propositions about God. Our model offers advantages such as eliminating the need for a sui generis religious faculty, harmonizing the sensus divinitatis with prominent theories in the cognitive science of religion, and providing a superior account of natural revelation.

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Author Profiles

Blake McAllister
Hillsdale College
Trent Dougherty
University of Rochester (PhD)

References found in this work

The skeptic and the dogmatist.James Pryor - 2000 - Noûs 34 (4):517–549.
Judgement and justification.William G. Lycan - 1988 - New York: Cambridge University Press.
Evidentialism.Richard Feldman & Earl Conee - 1985 - Philosophical Studies 48 (1):15 - 34.

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