Janusz Salamon
Charles University, Prague
Peter Millican and Branden Thornhill-Miller have recently argued that contradictions between different religious belief systems, in conjunction with the host of defeaters based on empirical research concerning alleged sources of evidence for ‘perceived supernatural agency’, render all ‘first-order’, that is actual, religious traditions positively irrational, and a source of discord on a global scale. However, since the authors recognise that the ‘secularisation thesis’ appears to be incorrect, and that empirical research provides evidence that religious belief also has beneficial individual and social effects, they put forward a hypothesis of a ‘second-order religious belief ’, with Universalist overtones and thus free of intergroup conflict, and free of irrationality, since supported (solely) by the Fine-Tuning Argument. While granting most of their arguments based on empirical research and embracing the new paradigm of the atheism/religion debate implicit in their paper, I contend that Millican’s and Thornhill-Miller’s proposal is unlikely to appeal to religious believers, because it misconstrues the nature and grounds of religious belief. I suggest that their hypothesis may be refined by taking into account a view of axiologically grounded religious belief that I refer to as ‘agatheism’, since it identifies God or the Ultimate Reality with the ultimate good (to agathon).
Keywords atheism  agatheism  rationality of religious belief  David Hume on religion  Design Argument  arguments for the existence of God
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DOI 10.24204/ejpr.v7i4.94
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Agatheology and Naturalisation of the Discourse on Evil.Janusz Salamon - 2017 - International Journal of Philosophy and Theology 78 (4-5):469-484.
Lineamenti di cristeologia. «Fede critica» e umiltà epistemica: il rapporto ragione-fede al confine tra meta-teologia, metodologia e vita.Damiano Migliorini - 2017 - TheoLogica: An International Journal for Philosophy of Religion and Philosophical Theology 1 (1):94-147.
Naturalistic Explanations of Theistic Beliefs.Daniel Von Wachter - 2017 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 9 (3):107-114.

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