22 (1):21-35 (1987
Too many theologies beg the question about the nature of religion by building metaphysically substantive assumptions into its description. Typically these assumptions are: the object of religious devotion must be both absolute and personal, final causality must be true, and there must be a cosmic conservation of value. Theological naturalism, exemplified in the thought of Henry Nelson Wieman, articulates an entirely formal, yet not substantively empty, conception of religion which does not beg these questions and which is consequently more descriptively adequate to the nature of religion. It cannot therefore be assumed, without begging the question, that religious adequacy requires the metaphysical falsity of philosophical naturalism.