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If Truth Be Told

Fundamentalists are notoriously difficult to have conversations with because they have a world view that allows them to dismiss inconvenient facts and arguments. There is, however, a way to debate fundamentalist positions that adroitly avoids this difficulty.

The strategy, sometimes referred to as 'a transcendental route to a conclusion', is derived from Immanuel Kant's transcendental deduction, as set out in 'The Critique of Pure Reason.

The argument is sometimes deployed against skeptics wondering whether the world and other persons exist. The fact that the question can be asked involves language, and languages could not exist without communities of language users.

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IF TRUTH BE TOLD

The rising tide of fundamentalism in the United States, the escalating clashes between Christians and Muslims in the Middle East, the debate within the Anglican Church concerning same sex marriage ... reflect an increasingly fractious world. Many factors are involved, but religious perspectives fuel much of the rhetoric occupying public discussions and political agendas.

This is both ironic and worrisome. Holy Wars notwithstanding, religions usually counsel their followers to practice universal love, good will and community. Unfortunately, preaching does not seem to prevent conflict among individuals sorted into Catholics, Protestants, and Muslims ....

The reason is not hard to figure out. If you and I subscribe to the same rendering of Doctrinal Truth, we will almost certainly get along. We are also more likely to combine our resources and ...

Solution Summary

Religious fundamentalists can be challenged by pointing out that they hold incompatible beliefs. For example, according to Divine Revelation, God created a world so people could develop moral and spiritual excellence. Why would he then undermine this project by telling human beings about it?

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