The Will to Make‐Believe: Religious Fictionalism, Religious Beliefs, and the Value of Art

Andrea Sauchelli
Lingnan University
I explore some of the reasons why, under specific circumstances, it may be rational to make-believe or imagine certain religious beliefs. Adopting a jargon familiar to certain contemporary philosophers, my main concern here is to assess what reasons can be given for adopting a fictionalist stance towards some religious beliefs. My understanding of fictionalism does not involve solely a propositional attitude but a broader stance, which may include certain acts of pretence. I also argue that a plausible reason to be fictionalist about a specific set of religious beliefs and practices has to do with the value of some artistic creations; namely, those that require the adoption of a religious point of view for their understanding.
Keywords Religious fictionalism  Make-believe  Fictionalism  Appreciation of Art  Value of Art
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Reprint years 2016
DOI 10.1111/phpr.12328
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The Varieties of Reference.Louise M. Antony, Gareth Evans & John McDowell - 1987 - Philosophical Review 96 (2):275.
The Myth of Morality.Richard Joyce - 2001 - Mind 113 (452):760-763.
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Mimesis as Make-Believe.Kendall L. Walton - 1996 - Synthese 109 (3):413-434.
The Kantian Moral Hazard Argument for Religious Fictionalism.Christopher Jay - 2014 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 75 (3):207-232.

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