Metaphor and Theological Realism

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In this paper, I argue that there are indispensable and irreducible metaphors in religious language and that this does not threaten a realist interpretation of religion. I first sketch a realist theory of religious language and argue that we cannot avoid addressing the problems metaphor poses to semantics. I then give a brief account of what it means for a metaphorical sentence to be true and how metaphors can refer to something even if what they mean is not expressible in literal terms. Finally, I discuss how this realist theory of metaphor influences our understanding of negative theology and gives a new perspective on religious pluralism.
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What Metaphors Mean.Davidson, Donald
What Metaphors Mean.Davidson, Donald
Literal Meaning.Searle, John R.
Metaphor.Moran, Richard

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