"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt." -- Bertrand Russell

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Philosophy of Religion Class

Today is the first day of my Philosophy of Religion class. It's going to be only the second time I'm taking a class completely unrelated to my PhD (first time was when I took a weight lifting class.) I'm really psyched and currently camping out outside of the room.

According to the syllabus, we're going to start the semester off with a discussion of Fideism -- the idea that religious convictions do not need or require rational justifications (i.e. either arguments or empirical evidence) for one to be justified in believing in them. Basically, it's the "faith-trump-card" that is oh-so-familiar to any one whose ever argued with a theist (especially theists who aren't very well versed in apologetics -- in which case, they probably won't know the word "fideism" either.) However, it looks like Wittgenstein wrote a defence of this sort of position, and I'd definitely like to see how the "father of analytic philosophy" handled this question. I'm therefore pretty excited that Wittgenstein is one of our first assigned readings.

It's a sophomore level class and I'm still debating whether or not to keep my identity as a graduate student secret. Class starts in about 20 minutes, no idea if I'll decide by then....

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