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Reduction and religion: Lessons from eliminative materialism

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image of Method & Theory in the Study of Religion

Cogmtivist theorizing about religion is promising, and this essay explores the ramifications of eliminative materialism for thinking about religion. First, and contrary to the assumption of eliminative matenalists, it is not obvious that the success of eliminative materialism would compromise the veracity of religious psychologies. Second, the success of eliminative materialism would prove the adequacy of formal theorizing for understanding religious expenence. Third, the success of eliminative materialism would force theories of religion to employ neuroanatomically-realizable psychological models. Finally, a powerful strategy which provides non-propositional, neurally-realizable models of psychological functions (connectiomsm) is currently available and is amenable to modeling religious knowledge.

Affiliations: 1: Religion Department Western Michigan University


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