A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies, Athiesm and Critiques of Religious Belief

Initial condensed revision notes. Included the essential knowledge needed for the exam. For the information, I used the Tyler and Reid "A2 Religious Studies" book, a 'Wellington College' powerpoint (http://intranet.wellingtoncollege.org.uk/philosophy-and-religion/a2-religious-studies/a2-philosophy-of-religion) and a website that I can't figure out how to link. But, if you type the module name into google, I think it's about the fifth one down.

Notes are a bit simplistic in places, that is purely because my Philosophy teacher thinks it is highly unlikely an exam question on this will come up...hope they help someone!

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  • Created by: Courtney
  • Created on: 27-05-12 20:37

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A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies

Atheism & Critiques of Religious Belief
Key Terms;

Atheism; literally, without/no God.
o Weak Atheism; Simply do not believe in God themselves
o Strong Atheism (Antitheism); Offers stong arguments against
God's existence a religious belief- considering it dangerous.
Agnosticism; it is not possible to know whether…

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A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies

Agnosticism is a 19th century term first
coined by Thomas Huxley. It means literally
`without hidden knowledge'. So agnostics
are completely open about the fact they
do not have enough knowledge to say
whether God exists or not! To some, it is a
branch of…

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A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies

Criticisms of Durkheim:

Religious people's loyalty tends to be foremost to God, then society-
not the other way around.
Does not explain why some religious people (MLK and CRM) are
prepared to go against the norms of society.
Durkheim's studies were of a primitive aboriginal tribe.…

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A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies

Psychological Critiques


Religion is a projective system or an illusion of which man should
`disregard in its relation to reality'. God has no reality, it is an
illusion. It is a universal obsession neurosis based on unconscious
human need for a father figure, which links…

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A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies


Influenced by Freud but more positive towards the role of religion and saw
that religion is a projection of the collective unconscious based on shared
images ­ `Archetypes' e.g. the mythic hero. These are interpreted slightly
differently in different cultures.

Criticisms of Jung;

Where is…

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A2 EDEXCEL Religious Studies

There has been a great deal of opposition to Dawkins' claims, not only
by people of faith but also by academics, such as Ward and McGrath
(both colleagues of Dawkins in Oxford)

Some general criticisms include:
· Dawkins only approaches extremists (Root of All Evil Documentary)…


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