Religion and the Hermeneutics of Contemplation
D.Z. Phillips argues that intellectuals need not see their task as being for or against religion, but as one of understanding it. What stands in the way of this task is certain methodological assumptions about what enquiry into religion must be. Beginning with Bernard Williams on Greek gods, Phillips goes on to examine these assumptions in the work of Hume, Feurerbach, marx, Frazer, Tylor, Marett, Freud, Durkheim, LÚvy-Bruhl, Berger and Winch. The result exposes confusion, but also gives logical space to religious belief without advocating personal acceptance of that belief, and shows how the academic study of religion may return to the contemplative task of doing conceptual justice to the world. Religion and the Hermeneutics of Contemplation extends in important ways D.Z. Phillips' seminal 1976 book Religion Without Explanation. It will be of interest to scholars and students of philosophy, anthropology, sociology and theology.
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analysis answer argues argument from design assumption atheism Azande Berger causal chapter claim concept-formation concerning context contradiction criticism culture D. Z. Phillips dead death deny discourse discussion distinction divine dream Durkheim E. E. Evans-Pritchard emphasis enquiry Evans-Pritchard example existence explanation expression fact feel Feuerbach Fideism Frazer Freud give gods Harvey hermeneutics of contemplation hermeneutics of recollection hermeneutics of suspicion human Hume Hume's Ibid ideas intellectual intellectualist involved kind language language-games Levy-Bruhl lives logical Ludwig Wittgenstein magic Marett Marx mean metaphysical monistic moral nature neurosis notion person perspective Peter Winch philosophical possibilities practices Preus psychoanalysis question R. S. Thomas reactions realised reality reason recognise reductionism relation religious beliefs religious concepts rites rituals Rush Rhees seen sense sexual Simone Weil simply social society sociology someone speak spirit theory things thought Tylor Understanding a Primitive Winch says Wittgenstein