Thursday, 12 February 2015

Why are so few philosophers theists?

It’s always dangerous to state the obvious. One provokes the ho-hum response and gets relegated to the parliament of bores. We do our best and what thanks do we get for it? No thanks, nothing but abuse. So then, opening the box - why are so few philosophers theists and why are so many of the specialists in philosophy of religion Christian theists? Is it that in the cradle the fairy dust of inquiry has fallen on so few? I think so. Most people are satisfied with the answers which their society has given them if not to the point of utter confidence then to the feeling that ‘it will be alright on the night’. As that Irish marching song has it,

We're on the one road
Sharing the one load
We're on the road to God knows where
We're on the one road
It may be the wrong road
But we're together now who cares

The aspirant to philosophy is inclined to say, ‘hmm, let me check the map’ and so if they depart from the deep rutted track it may be away from theism. Some few amongst that group cannot quite relinquish what the majority of rational seekers reject. They hope to more firmly establish their adherence, to make it rational.

Is the smart money on atheism? My view is that there’s a hive mind operating in academic philosophy. It is clear that there is congregation around the queen bees of the day. They were mostly all Idealists, then they were Logical Positivists, then Linguistic Analysis reigned and now Analysis has set itself firmly against the Continental and finds an identity in that. Last and late, the dismal whimsy of trolleyism.
cf philosopher swimmers

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