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Bernard BolzanoHis Life and Work$
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Paul Rusnock and Jan Sebestík

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198823681

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198823681.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 17 January 2022

Philosophy of Religion

Philosophy of Religion

(p.139) Chapter 4 Philosophy of Religion
Bernard Bolzano

Paul Rusnock

Jan Šebestík

Oxford University Press

As professor at the Charles University, Bolzano lectured on religion for many years, developing a theoretical framework for understanding religions in general, which was then applied to Catholicism. The starting point is the notion of a religious proposition, defined as a proposition that if believed, would have an impact on someone’s virtue and happiness, and which one may be inclined to accept or reject based not on reasons but rather on one’s wishes. A person’s religion is then defined as the collection of his religious beliefs. Given this very general conception, it is clear that Bolzano counts as religious far more propositions than most would, to the point where even atheists can properly be said to have a religion. Other inquiries deal with the figurative content of many religious doctrines and with divine revelation, the latter the subject of one of the most subtle of Bolzano’s conceptual analyses.

Keywords:   religion, symbolic doctrine, sources of religious belief, natural religion, miracle

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