• Religion and Belief

      Keene, J. Calvin; St. Lawrence University (1971-01-01)
      I agree with Dr. Blanshard that religion needs reason, and belief should be made as rational as possible. It is an ethical responsibility to believe the truth. But belief always includes an element of tentativeness. So belief is sometimes appropriate, even in the absence of compelling evidence. Moreover, religion is related to a very different reality than is science. Consequently, the kinds of evidence that are appropriate to the one are not necessarily appropriate to the other. Insofar as God is conceived as a person, rather than an impersonal object, God cannot be approached or studied in the way in which we study impersonal objects.
    • Toward a Reasonable Ethics of Belief

      Ferre, Frederick; Dickenson College (1971-01-01)
      Reason has an important role to play in every area of life, including religion. However, Dr. Blanshard’s definition of what is “reasonable” is too narrow. There are many kinds and degrees of evidence. Even if one should not believe contrary to the evidence, or without any evidence, one might be permitted to believe in the absence of perfect evidence. Moreover, what constitutes relevant evidence is not the same in all areas of life. The kind of evidence that is relevant to a belief in physics is not the same as the kind of evidence that is relevant to a belief about the values of music, for example.