Metaphysics, Mysticism and Russell

Contemporary Philosophy (1 & 2): 45 - 50 (2002)
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Abstract
Towards the end of 1911, Russell complains that philosophy has unfortunately not produced a set of religious beliefs that he can rely on in his personal life. Early in his career philosophy had appeared very promising. But the adoption of G.E. Moores's philosophical views put paid to the "last hope of getting any creed out of philosophy". My paper is an attempt to show that Russell ought to celebrate, and not complain about the products of his philosophical endeavours. His correspondence with Lady Ottoline Morrell contains a fascinating methodological hypothesis on the relationship between emotions and understanding: an hypothesis that can be used to produce the religion that Russell is after in 1911. This view will later form the basis of some of Russell's most obscure writings on religion - namely, his work on mysticism.
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Archival date: 2016-04-22
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