Thursday, June 05, 2003

Religious Experience(5)

This excerpt is from "The Varieties of Religious Experience" by William James.
I will later write about importanceof this book and also quote more of the arguments that led
to conlusion he draws here:

In the natural sciences and industrial arts it never occurs to anyone to try to refute opinions by showing up their author’s neurotic constitution. Opinions here are invariably tested by logic and by experiment, no matter what may be their author’s neurological type. It should be no otherwise with religious opinions. Their value can only be ascertained by spiritual judgments directly passed upon them, judgments based on our own immediate feeling primarily; and secondarily on what we can ascertain of their experiential relations to our moral needs and to the rest of what we hold as true.
Immediate luminousness, in short, philosophical reasonableness, and moral helpfulness are the only available criteria.

(posted by Farid)

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