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Faith and Reason$
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Richard Swinburne

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780199283927

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199283927.001.0001

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The Purpose of Religion

The Purpose of Religion

Chapter:
(p.159) 5 The Purpose of Religion
Source:
Faith and Reason
Author(s):

Richard Swinburne (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199283927.003.0005

The purposes of the practice of a religion are to achieve the goals of salvation for oneself and others, and (if there is a God) to render due worship and obedience to God. Different religions have different understandings of salvation and God. It is rational for someone to pursue these goals by following a religious way (the practices commended by some religion, e.g., Buddhism or Christianity), in so far as they judge that it would be greatly worthwhile to achieve those goals and in so far as they judge that it is to some degree probable that they will attain them by following the way of that religion. They will judge that in so far as they judge the creed of that religion to be to some degree probable (not necessarily more probable than not). The goals of the Christian religion are better than those of Buddhism.

Keywords:   Aquinas, Buddhism, Christianity, worship, salvation

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