Pragmatic Encroachment and Theistic Knowledge

In Matthew A. Benton, John Hawthorne & Dani Rabinowitz (eds.), Knowledge, Belief, and God: New Insights in Religious Epistemology. Oxford University Press. pp. 267-287 (2018)
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Abstract

If knowledge is sensitive to practical stakes, then whether one knows depends in part on the practical costs of being wrong. When considering religious belief, the practical costs of being wrong about theism may differ dramatically between the theist (if there is no God) and the atheist (if there is a God). This paper explores the prospects, on pragmatic encroachment, for knowledge of theism (even if true) and of atheism (even if true), given two types of practical costs: namely, by holding a false belief, or by missing out on a true belief. These considerations set up a more general puzzle of epistemic preference when faced with the choice between two beliefs, only one of which could become knowledge.

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Matthew A. Benton
Seattle Pacific University

Citations of this work

Can Pragmatists Be Moderate?Alex Worsnip - 2021 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 102 (3):531-558.
Sins of Thought.Mark Schroeder - 2020 - Faith and Philosophy 37 (3):273-293.
An Epistemic Version of Pascal's Wager.Elizabeth Jackson - forthcoming - Journal of the American Philosophical Association:1-17.

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References found in this work

Knowledge and lotteries.John Hawthorne - 2004 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Knowledge and practical interests.Jason Stanley - 2005 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Stakes, withholding, and pragmatic encroachment on knowledge.Mark Schroeder - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 160 (2):265 - 285.
Evil and Evidence.Matthew A. Benton, John Hawthorne & Yoaav Isaacs - 2016 - Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion 7:1-31.
Anti-Intellectualism.Blake Roeber - 2018 - Mind 127 (506):437-466.

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