Divine Presence and Epistemic Trust

10 Pages Posted: 8 Jan 2013

See all articles by Jerry L. Martin

Jerry L. Martin

University of Colorado at Boulder; National Endowment for the Humanities

Date Written: October 20, 2012


The experience of divine presence is compelling. Yet it immediately confronts the Epistemology of Doubt that has dominated modern philosophy since Descartes. Among its many limitations, this tradition is ill-equipped to understand divine self-presentation. But an alternative tradition can be conceived. Drawing on Thomas Reid and G. E. Moore, as well as other thinkers, we can envision an Epistemics of Trust. This is not so much a theory (like those offered by Alston and Plantinga) as a research program, in the sense expounded by Imre Lakatos, that would address a wide range of knowings. It is here applied to two experiences of divine presence, Moses’ and the author’s own. The analysis illuminates not only the experiences, but the nature of the divine reality presenting itself.

Keywords: divine presence, epistemology, Imre Lakatos, agnosticism, Epistemics of Trust, divine reality

Suggested Citation

Martin, Jerry L., Divine Presence and Epistemic Trust (October 20, 2012). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2195680 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2195680

Jerry L. Martin (Contact Author)

University of Colorado at Boulder ( email )

United States

National Endowment for the Humanities ( email )

1100 Pennsylvania
N.W. Washington, DC 20506
United States

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