Caroline Franks Davis provides a clear, sensitive, and carefully argued assessment of the value of religious experiences as evidence for religious beliefs. Much more than an 'argument from religous experience', the inquiry systematically addresses underlying philosophical issues such as the role of interpretation in experience, the function of models and metaphors in religious language, and the way perceptual experiences in general are used as evidence for claims about the world. Oxford University Press, 268 pages. Paperback.
This study examines the nature of religious experiences and whether they can be used as evidence for religious beliefs. Davis discusses the important philosophical issues raised by religious experience, such as the role of models and metaphors in descriptions of religious experience, and the way experiences in general are used as evidence for claims about the world. Using contemporary and classic sources from the world religions, she gives an account of different types of religious experience and, drawing extensively on psychological and sociological as well as philosophical literature, deals with skeptical challenges about religious experiences.
"Should be the starting point for any future investigation of the evidential force of religious experience upon any particular religious claim. Not only does it give a complete catalog of the various types of religious experiences, but it also gives a complete catalog of the various arguments from religious experience and the objections that can be made thereto."--Christian Scholar's Review
"This is a splendid piece of work. It breaks new ground as well as dealing comprehensively with the standard material on religious experience."-- William J. Abraham, Perkins School of Theology
"Davis does an admirable job in reopening an isue which many may regard as closed."--Theological Studies
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