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Philosophy of Transcendence: Selected Problems

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Jana Trajtelová

Does God exist? Is it meaningful to speak of the Infinite or the Absolute? What is to be understood by concepts such as soul, spirit, or love? Are religious truths philosophically relevant and philosophically tenable? The reflective critical thinking of philosophy tries to embrace each side of human reality, even the matters and themes which arise out of the religious experience. This auxiliary textbook intends to present several selected topics of the philosophy of religion and it is primarily intended for bachelor students of philosophy.
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1. God in Philosophical Thinking

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God – rationality – atheism – philosophical proof – mysticism

The reflective thinking of philosophy tries to critically grasp every aspect of human reality, as well as matters and themes of religious belief. The motives and approaches of individual schools or thinkers can be different, ranging from apologetics and the setting out of one’s own belief and attitudes, to a criticism or an accusation of religion. Positivists, for example, are convinced that the word God does not have any positive meaning as it does not relate to anything real, and thus it is pointless to indulge any discussions on it (similarly with regard to other concepts – spirit, soul, and the like). The fact is however, philosophy deals with all of dimensions of human reality – it thematizes, problematizes, critically judges, constantly asks, formulates theories and meaningful hypotheses – also in relation to a “subject”, which normally represents the domain of personal ← 13 | 14 → belief. J. Schmidt is even convinced that the theme of “God” forms an entirely fundamental and separate field of philosophy as it relates to asking the most important existential questions (Schmidt, 2008, p. 19).

The philosophy of religion today does not only reflect specific religious conceptions or theology, but also scientific research on religion (e.g. religionistics, the sociology and psychology of religion, and cultural-anthropological research) and its various specific issues (e.g. cosmological hypotheses concerning the arguments for or against the existence of God), whereby it critically judges and integrates this research while at the same time remaining...

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