The Rejection of the Belief in the Existence of God and the Different Solution Offered by Virtue-based Epistemology

Document Type : Research Paper


Assistant Professor, Department of Islamic Philosophy and Theology, Almustafa International University, Mashhad Branch, Mashhad, Iran


The intelligibility of the belief in the existence of God is the most important issue in religious epistemology. Zagzebski’s conception of virtue-based epistemology both criticizes the externalist and individualist viewpoints of reformed epistemology and emphasizes the voluntariness of the belief and its influence by the community. In this stance, the authoritativeness of the religious belief is explained based on the virtue of “epistemic trust” on oneself and other members of the epistemic community. Therefore, the believers’ belief in the existence of God at different times and places can be the basis of the authoritativeness of one’s belief in the existence of God. This issue has been explained via an argumentation that indicates the superiority of epistemic universality over epistemic self-determinism and epistemic self-centrism.


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