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					Religious Belief
Wittgenstein and the Resurrection of Jesus

--Wittgenstein is on a ship to Bergen in 1937
-- He ponders the Christian God story
   "I read: 'No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but
    by the Holy Ghost.' -- And it is true: I cannot call him
    LORD; because that says nothing to me. I could
    call him 'the paragon,' 'God' even -- or rather, I can
    understand it when he is called thus; but I cannot
    utter the word 'Lord' with meaning. BECAUSE I DO
    NOT BELIEVE that he will come to judge me;
    because THAT says nothing to me. And it could
    say something to me, only if I lived COMPLETELY
    differently.
   "I read: 'No man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but
    by the Holy Ghost.' -- And it is true: I cannot call him
    LORD; because that says nothing to me. I could
    call him 'the paragon,' 'God' even -- or rather, I can
    understand it when he is called thus; but I cannot
    utter the word 'Lord' with meaning. BECAUSE I DO
    NOT BELIEVE that he will come to judge me;
    because THAT says nothing to me. And it could
    say something to me, only if I lived COMPLETELY
    differently.
   What inclines even me to believe in
    Christ's Resurrection? It is as though I
    play with the thought. -- If he did not rise
    from the dead, then he decomposed in
    the grave like any other man. He is DEAD
    AND DECOMPOSED. In that case he is a
    teacher like any other and can no longer
    HELP; and once more we are orphaned
    and alone. … We are in a sort of hell
    where we can do nothing but dream,
    roofed in, as it were, and cut off from
    heaven.
Seems to say two things

  1. Humanity is disgusting

  2. Only a God story would make sense
  of how insane the world is, and how
  revolting humanity is

  3. The thought of us being marooned
  (on our own) was just a despicable idea

          Poor Picture of Account
Compare: Movie endings

Imagine a movie where the ending is poor
You say: “ I hated that ending”


                  Question:
           Can a movie have a poor     Atheists have a dismal
           ending – and how would      picture of account.
          you know that? Would it be
                    true?              Cf. Bill Maher
A New Theological Stance?




Atheist        Agnostic                “believer”

                          Do not doubt
                          Spiritual?

                          Question:
                Can you see “God” through
                  assertability conditions
The Grammar of
   Religious
  Propositions
Consider these propositions:

1. I believe Casey Anthony was guilty (juror
   perspective)
2. I believe smoking causes lung cancer
   (scientific perspective)
3. I believe in God
4. I believe in my wife

                            Question:
                      What is the difference
                        between them?
        believing         Believing in
        that
        grammar             grammar

      coronation             Trust
                       I don’t need to see
I’m taking a side on   evidence
the evidence
The Grammar of religious propositions

  Magic?         Unknown


Religion is predicated upon the unknown, not
upon magic
Science can refute claims of magic, not
claims of the unknown

    There is absolutely no contradiction
    between the God stories and Science
     Question:
What would science
have to find to prove
 there is no God?
The Big Bang was the result        Consider this from
of the inevitable laws of          Stephen Hawking
physics and did not need
God to spark the creation of
the Universe, Stephen
Hawking has concluded.
“Because there is a law such as
gravity, the Universe can and
will create itself from nothing.
Spontaneous creation is the           Question:
reason there is something          If true, does this
rather than nothing, why the          refute God?
Universe exists, why we exist.”
Aspect-Sight and
   Theology
   … Perhaps we can say: Only LOVE can
    believe in Resurrection. Or: it is LOVE
    that believes the Resurrection.

				
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