Reason and Faith


The claim of this paper is that theism and atheism as beliefs about the nature of the universe are equally distant from any sort of proper justification by reasoning, but that faith cannot be reduced to any sort of belief (although it induces beliefs). This claim is illustrated by a survey of several case-studies, including the case of moral sense (Marc Hauser), the so-called “God gene” (Dean Hammer) and discoveries of Benjamin Libet on “free” movement. The illustrations attempt to show that only some imagerial associations connected with these cases, and respectively with religious beliefs, would make an impression of incoherence, not their actual content. The conclusion of the paper would echo the statements of Cardinal John Henry Newman, who said in his Oxford University Sermons: “Faith is an instrument of knowledge and action, unknown to the world before, a principle sui generis, distinct from those which nature supplies, and independent of what is commonly understood by Reason”. Some implications of this conclusion, such as the notion of the rationality of faith, an account of the relation between science and theology, or the problem of agnosticism, are discussed, too.


theism, atheism, agnosticism, rationality, science and religion, John Henry Newman

How to cite:

Tałasiewicz, Mieszko. “Reason and Faith.” Eidos. A Journal for Philosophy of Culture 2, no. 1(3) (2018): 87–95. https://doi.org/10.26319/3919.


Mieszko Tałasiewicz
Institute of Philosophy, University of Warsaw
Krakowskie Przedmieście 3, 00-927 Warsaw, Poland


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