Philosophy of Religion

Philosophy of Religion

Choose from one of the following topics:
1.
2.
3.
4.
Is faith fundamental to the human condition (or to what it means to be a human being)?
Is the capacity for infinite resignation an important part of living well?
Is faith superior to infinite resignation?
Does contemporary society have an impoverished conception of faith in the ways that are
described in Fear and Trembling?
5. Is the concept of faith in Fear and Trembling similar or different from Demea’s attitude
towards God in Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion?
6. How is Silentio’s treatment of faith similar to Philo’s skepticism in Dialogues Concerning
Natural Religion?
Structure:
1. Develop a thesis statement: In one sentence you should clearly state your position and the
overarching reason for it.
2. Explain the issue.
3. The argument you give for your position should consist in the careful articulation of 2 – 3
good reasons that you have developed by explicating the relevant parts of the text(s).
4. Include one objection to your position (that you develop) and give a response to that
objection. Your response may be a criticism of the objection (explain why it doesn’t provide
a good reason for dismissing your position) or an acknowledgement that the objection
compels you to modify your position.
5. A brief conclusion.
Instructions:
• Your essay should demonstrate a careful engagement with the text.
• You need to define all of the most important concepts and make sure to back up your claims
with explication, analysis, and textual reference.
• Use direct quotations sparingly.
• Please use Chicago Manual of Style
o http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html
• Assignments should be double spaced, and typed using a 12 point font.
• Make sure your name and student number is on the top of the page.
• Number all your pages, and do not include a cover page.
Essay Support:
• Writing Tutorial Service: http://carleton.ca/sasc/writing-tutorial-service/
o Online feedback
o In person appointments
o Online writing resources.
• Bring a thesis statement, outline, or draft to me. I could make extra office hours next
Wednesday, please email me a time if you think you would attend.
Answer the question
Focus on explaining the text. Be careful to
take the time to explain what is said in the text
before you explain what you think of it.
Explain the reasons for the author’s position,
rather than just stating what the author thinks.
Show how and why they hold the position
they do. Philosophy papers are about
analyzing arguments and ideas rather than
stating facts.

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