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The Vice of Heresy Hunting

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The Vice of Heresy Hunting

  1. 1. since i was a kid, my interests have mostly involved science & philosophy, and i've fancied myself a sort of cartographer, as they say, mapping reality i haven't dealt with theology as theology much --- instead, my interests have focused mostly on the intersection between theology & epistemology, trying to establish criteria for which theological and/or existential stances remain "live options" this is to ask which such options enjoy sufficient "epistemic virtue" in this realm of the "equiplausible" while we have some good theoretical ideas regarding the criteria for truly live, truly virtuos, truly plausible existential stances, methodologically, it's still too early for us to successfully adjudicate between them all (as we are practically constrained) this is to recognize that choosing between this or that onto-theology and/or theological doctrine very often (not always) will still boil down to a matter of taste, ie nothing empirically measurable, rationally demonstrable, morally discernible, pragmatically determinable or relationally realizable, instead, just aesthetically appealing. oh, to be sure, one can argue over labels and membership credentials (heterodoxy), who's in this circle or out of that one (heresy hunting), whose beliefs correspond to this definition and whose to that, but that's all more akin to mathematical set theory and etymology and linguistics and semantics than it is to theology proper, whether speculative (whatever that could possibly entail) or practical (the real rosetta stone of epistemic virtue to which we aspire albeit yet beyond our methodological grasp). if our search for truth via epistemic virtue remains problematic, even in the physical, biological & social sciences, especially in economics and politics, for example, which operate in the realm of the equiprobable, how much more problematical might we rightly expect religion to be in the realm where theologians ply their trade? for there reality presents as even more epistemically indeterminate, ontologically vague and existentially equiplausible? and yet the most vigorous arguments will typically involve politics and the most vitriolic, religion? but how this can't be? how are such arguments marshalled? if not with virtue then necessarily as vice? 1

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