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Wittgenstein and Natural Religion$
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Gordon Graham

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780198713975

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198713975.001.0001

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World Pictures and Groundless Belief

World Pictures and Groundless Belief

(p.55) 4 World Pictures and Groundless Belief
Wittgenstein and Natural Religion

Gordon Graham

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines Norman Malcolm’s account of “groundless believing,” and argues that it does not plausibly apply to religion. It then proceeds to subject related appeals to religion as a “world picture” or “system of reference” to critical scrutiny. Once again, the argument is made that these both illegitimately extend Wittgenstein’s very brief remarks, and fail to make a case for regarding religion as instances. Some parallels between Wittgenstein and the “common sense” philosophy of Thomas Reid are drawn and explored. This further connects Wittgenstein with the philosophers considered in Chapter 1.

Keywords:   groundless believing, world picture, system of reference, Norman Malcolm, Thomas Reid

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