On William James's "The Will to Believe," (1896) plus more on Pragmatism (1907), continuing our discussion from Episode 20. We also touched on James's follow-up book, The Meaning of Truth
Does pragmatism give ground for religious belief, like if I say it feels good for me to believe in God, is that in any sense a legitimate grounds for that belief? Is belief in science or rationality itself a form of faith? Is religious belief a "forced choice," or does it just not matter what you believe?
Also, we sort further through James on truth: truth is created by us, but what does that mean? That only statements actually verified or otherwise useful are true, or can have a truth value (true of false) at all? In saying that we create truth, does that make James a relativist, and if so, is that bad?
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Running Time: 1 hr., 38 min. Recorded: June 24, 2010. Participants: Mark, Wes, Seth, Dylan.
As a bonus, your purchase includes a high-bitrate mp3 of the song that concludes the episode, "Who Cares What You Believe?" recorded in 2001 by Mark's band Madison Lint.
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