Does one need evidence for belief in God?

Dissertation, University of Warwick (2018)
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Abstract
It is commonly the case that sound, epistemological principles such as basic beliefs immediately become regarded as invalid when applied to theistic contexts. I will show that despite this, there is a strong sense of comparability between beliefs in God with beliefs in non-theistic beings and other commonly-held basic beliefs such as qualities of love and trust. To establish that both the belief in the existence of God and the existence of other beings and non-perceptual qualities are justified as evidence in the same way, I will have to establish that they are both what Plantinga calls properly basic beliefs. I will argue that this comparability makes it equally justifiable for the belief in God’s existence in itself to be basic, in the same way that it is with other commonly-held beliefs. This argument does however require strong grounds to prove its viability, so I will be examining and critiquing the arguments which allude to a contradiction of this conclusion. By carefully examining these arguments, I will ultimately attempt to provide further justification for Plantinga’s claim that the mere belief in God is sufficient to be regarded as evident to the self, without needing to be justified through logical arguments.
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Archival date: 2018-06-28
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Religious Epistemology.Dougherty, Trent & Tweedt, Chris

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