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The Predicament of BeliefScience, Philosophy, and Faith$
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Philip Clayton and Steven Knapp

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199695270

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199695270.001.0001

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The plurality of religions

The plurality of religions

Chapter:
(p.69) 4 The plurality of religions
Source:
The Predicament of Belief
Author(s):

Philip Clayton

Steven Knapp

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199695270.003.0004

The previous chapters have shown that “minimally personalistic theism” (MPT) is a consistent position; indeed, MPT may be rationally superior to its competitors. But such a view is too “thin” to support religious life and practice. The next stage is to ask where, if anywhere, in human history one finds signs of the presence and activity of the God described by MPT. Here, however, the problem of religious plurality arises: rational arguments alone are insufficient to select among the many competing accounts. Personal or subjective factors may incline a given person to explore and evaluate one particular religious tradition. But even if other religions are not live options for her, this does not mean that she can rationally refute them. Important consequences follow for the nature of individual religious belief and for the self-conceptions of Christians in particular.

Keywords:   theism, personal God, religious plurality, pluralism, Abrahamic faiths, relativism, apologetics, religious practice

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