AJ Ayer- it is impossible to verify the existence of God because religious experiences are unverifiable and thus it is unreasonable to believe them Conversion Meaning to change in form, character or function; to cause a person to change beliefs Examples: Natural mystical experiences are, for example, experiences of the 'deeper self' or experiences of oneness with nature.
Thus, is possible to see how one and the same object can be experienced in ways that are completely incompatible with one another.
There are no abiding substances, and no eternal souls. The study of mysticism is largely an empirical process, and knowledge of the factual content of various religions is necessary to that end.
On this view, religious experiences should not Padavanos definitions of religious experience treated as comparable to sense experiences, but that does not entail that they are not important, nor that they are not in some sense veridical, Padavanos definitions of religious experience that they could still be avenues for important insights about reality.
Philosophy of the Buddha, New York: Even though religious claims look in every way like ordinary assertions about the world, their lack of empirical consequences makes them meaningless.
William James argued that religious experiences can range from experiences that have little religious significance to those that are completely life changing. The numinous experience also has a personal quality to it, in that the person feels to be in communion with a holy other.
According to this classical empiricist view, all ideas, beliefs, and theories expressed in conceptual form are to be traced back to their origin in sense if they are to be understood and justified.
Zen Buddhists are fond of pointing to insights that are already possessed but not recognized as such until their holder is shaken loose from ordinary patterns of thought. Explicitly relying on Immanuel Kant to critique Locke, but also drawing support from Plato, Plotinus, and Emanuel SwedenborgEmerson argued for the legitimacy of intuition and granted it authority over experience.
Recent critics of ahistorical approaches to mysticism, such as Grace Jantzen, have critiqued James on the basis of this sort of reading. Ineffable Those experiences that are so extraordinary they cannot be described in a way that would make them intelligible to anyone who has not had such an experience 2.
Finally, some non-religious experiences may have religious significance. In contrast to Otto, who made analogies—particularly between religious and aesthetic experience—in order to evoke the "perfectly sui generis" experience of the numinous in his readers, James was an inveterate comparativist who liked nothing better than to construct a graduated series of examples—religious and non-religious.
Wach represents the explicit codification of the German intellectual tradition represented by Schleiermacher and Otto under the rubric of religious experience within the context of the academic study of religion the History of Religions beginning in the s.
Richard Swinburne[ edit ] In his book Faith and Reason, the philosopher Richard Swinburne formulated five categories into which all religious experiences fall: A private experience which may be explained using normal language e.
There are general problems with all kinds of naturalistic explanations as defeaters.
Otto sees the numinous as the only possible religious experience. Zaehner has identified two distinctively different mystical experiences: Lewis argues that ecstasy and possession are basically one and the same experience, ecstasy being merely one form which possession may take.
The Tao gives the universe a kind of grain, or flow, going against which causes human difficulty. The social expression of religious experience results in the formation of specifically religious groups distinct from such natural groups as the family, the local society, and the state.
The second form of the immediate is the explicitly mystical sort of experience in which the aim is to pass beyond every form of articulation and to attain unity with the divine. The use of the term is discussed under the following headings: The bourgeoisie owns the means of production and exploits the proletariat in what Marx described as dehumanising acts.
Religious experiences are in all relevant respects like sensory experiences; sensory experiences are excellent grounds for beliefs about the physical world; so religious experiences are excellent grounds for religious beliefs. The believer discovers that he or she is not distinct from the cosmos, the deity or the other reality, but one with it.
In Social Teachings of the Christian Churches ; English,he drew an important distinction between mysticism, in the widest sense of the word, which he understood as "the insistence upon a direct inward and present religious experience" Troeltsch, II, p.
A second attack on the classical conception came from American pragmatist philosophers, notably Charles Sanders PeirceWilliam James, and John Dewey, for whom experience was the medium for the disclosure of whatever there is to be encountered; it is far richer and more complex than a passive registry of sensible data.
While there are important differences between ordinary sense-experience and religious experience clarity of the experience, amount of information it contains, presence of competing explanations, and the likeit is not clear whether the differences are great enough to disqualify religious testimony always and everywhere.
Like many romantics with an interest in the perennial wisdom tradition, Emerson viewed all religions as pointing to "a fundamental Unity," which, in his view, reached its highest expression in Hinduism.
Others, such as H. The structure of religious experience The self and the other All religious experience can be described in terms of three basic elements: Religious experience is always found in connection with a personal concern and quest for the real self, oriented toward the power that makes life holy or a ground and a goal of all existence.
The proponent of the naturalistic explanation as a defeater owes us some reason to believe that his or her argument is not just another skeptical argument from the veil of perception.
Given their logic, the encyclical asked, "[W]ith what right will Modernists deny the truth of an experience affirmed by a follower of Islam? If the reports are at all similar, then it may be reasonable to conclude that there is some truth to the testimony, at least in broad outline.
According to Cartesian-style foundationalism, in order to count as justified, a belief must either be grounded in other justified beliefs, or derive its justification from some special status, like infallibility, incorrigibility, or indubitability.
Experience as conceived from the standpoint of a British philosophical tradition stemming from John Locke and David Hume is essentially the reports of the world received through the senses.
This applies particularly to understanding the religious experience of another religious tradition.'A religious experience involves some kind of "perception" of the invisible world, or a perception that some visible person or thing is a manifestation of the invisible world' Edward Schleiermacher's definition.
First, religious experience is to be distinguished from religious feelings, in the same way that experience in general is to be distinguished from feelings in general. A feeling of elation, for example, even if it occurs in a religious context, does not count in itself as a religious experience, even if the subject later comes to think that the feeling was caused by some objective reality of religious significance.
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Religious experience, specific experience such as wonder at the infinity of the cosmos, the sense of awe and mystery in the presence of the sacred or holy, feeling of dependence on a divine power or an unseen order, the sense of guilt and anxiety accompanying belief in a divine judgment, or the.
Ordinary language cannot do justice to religious experience, because it is an experience beyond normal sense-experience Religious language is a ‘schema’ – an attempt to find clusters of words which approach the idea of expressing an inexpressible idea.
Vardy's Definition of an Experience "Religious experience is a very broad term. It might refer to a moment of natural wonder ot to exultations during on - Easter Service, the mystical revelation of a Saint, or a conversation, a moment of clarity that changes a life".Download