If we cannot prove the claims of religious belief, is it nevertheless reasonable to believe these claims?

This is an introduction to the Reformed Epistemology (RE) movement that was particularly associated with the philospher Alvin Plantinga. Plantinga was interested in establishing the grounds on which a belief might be considered “rational (reasonable)”. Post-Enlightenment, beliefs required “evidence” or “foundations”, viz. foundationalism but more recently it was recognised that we nevertheless have things we consider reasonable to have believed without such evidence, so-called basic beliefs – that is, beliefs which are not founded on other beliefs. RE was known for proposing that theistic beliefs can be held to be properly basic and therefore do not require “evidence” for it to be rational to hold them.

This was a 3000 word essay for an undergraduate module but still manages to cover significant issues in the debate. You can read a PDF here.

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