Course Title : Essential Issues of Philosophy of Religion
Code Course
Credits ECTS
ISC 431-2 A -1 3 0 0 3.00 6
Lecturer and Office Hours
Teaching Assistant and Office Hours
Course Level
Description This subject, analyzing the basic terms of the philosophy of the religion such as “the relationship intellect-divine proclamation”, “arguments on the existence of God”, “the religion-moral relationship”, “bad problem”, “life after death”, “the religion and religious pluralism”, make the student think in a more rational way, more critically and more generally.
Objectives To equip students with the ability to make interpretations about terms fundamentals and arguments of the philosophy of religion.
Course Outline
1What is the philosophy of the religion? The relationship between the religion and Philosophy What is philosophy? What is religion? Philosophy of Religion: Definition of the term "philosophy of religion"; Is the term "philosophy of religion" widespread? What are the basic problems of the philosophy of religion and what do they address? 1. Metaphysical problems: The existence or non-existence of God, arguments for and against existence, revelation, the existential value of man, etc. 2. Epistemological problems: Just as you start from the consequence to reach the cause, scientific value when you start from good knowledge, revelation, inspiration and inspiration as well as religious experience. 3. Linguistic and logical analysis of religious provisions: The connection between moral postulates and scientific postulates, the analogies we use to understand God; Religious symbolism and their worldview; Do they have scientific value and how much do they reflect the truth? Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 42-74
2Arguments about the existence of God: The Ontological argument St. Anselm's argument was called the ontological argument, an argument that has caused deep divisions among philosophers ever since. Many prominent 20th-century philosophers, such as Charles Hartshorn, Norman Malcolm, and Alvin Plantinga, think this is a sound argument. A Summary of the Ontological Argument: 1. There is a possibility that a Maximum Large Being exists; 2. A Maximum Great Being exists in any possible world .; 3. If a Maximum Great Being exists in any possible world, then it exists in every possible world .; 4. If a Maximum Great Being exists in every possible world, then it also exists in the real world .; 5. A Maximum Great Being exists in the real world .; 6. Consequently, a Maximally Great Being exists .; Criticisms of the Ontological argument Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page.111-124
3Arguments about the existence of God: The cosmologic argument The cosmological argument is an argument based on the principle that everything has a cause. The Cosmological Argument is a family of arguments, which depart from the universe, to go to the cause of the causes which is God; 1. The Argument of Creation (Hudus): Everything created has a creator; The world / universe is created; So the world / universe also has a creator; And that creator is God / Allah; 2. Argument of possibility (Possibility): Everything that is tried has an obligatory thing that has made it possible; The world / universe is possible; So the world / universe has an obligatory thing that has made it possible; And that creator is God / Allah; 3. Argument of motion (Movements): Everything that moves has a motion; The world / universe is in motion; So the world / universe also has a movement; And he who moves is God / Allah .; Criticisms of the Cosmological Argument Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 125-132
4Arguments about the existence of God: Religious experience argument The argument of religious experience or in other words the mystical argument was first used by the philosopher William James in the 15th century. of 19, when he wrote the book "Types of Religious Experience". It is an argument born of positivist science. That is, if something has been proven by experimental methods it shows that it is true. It is not correct as an argument, as the term experience is a technical term. Characteristics of religious experience: 1- They vary depending on the culture; 2. Occurs immediately; 3. It is impossible to explain in words; 4. This experience is unified, there is no process .; Criticisms of the argument of religious experience. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 158-168
5Arguments about the existence of God: Teleological argument The argument of regularity: By means of this argument, seeing the inevitable order and the great harmony that can be perceived and recognized by the senses in nature and in the phenomena that occur in it, it is asserted that this harmony in the universe is the work of a creator. who knows everything and who has power over everything. This argument is also called the argument of the final goal, of wisdom, of security, of favor; Criticisms of the Teleological argument Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 133-157
6Theism and attributes of God Some Philosophical Terms (Theism, Deism, Pantheism, Gnosticism, Atheism) and approaches to the philosophy of religion; The attributes of Allah are generally treated in two groups: individual attributes and essential attributes. 1. Individual Attributes (Dhatí): Existence (wujud), Presence (kidem), Presence (beka), Incompatibility with created beings (muhalefetun li'l-hauadith), Unity (vahdanijet), Existence in itself (kijam bi nefsihi) . 2. Essential Attributes (Thubutí): Life (hajat), Knowledge (ilm), Hearing (sem '), Sight (basar), Will (will), Power (kudret), Word (kalam), Creation (tekvin) To speak of the attributes of God is more difficult than to speak of God Himself, because: 1. Some attributes accepted by philosophy are not accepted by religion, and some attributes accepted by religion are not accepted by philosophy. 2. To speak of the attributes of God, you will inevitably speak of the universe and man. When talking about the attribute of creation, about the creations of God it is impossible not to mention the universe and man. When the issue of being God with absolute will is treated, problems such as the value and quality of human will, the problem of evil, etc. will appear. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 103-110
7Linguistic analysis and the language of religion Since religious and metaphysical propositions cannot be thought of as scientific assertions, this highlighted the problem of thinking in a different way. A good part of language analysts are driven by the idea that being meaningful and being verifiable are not synonymous. A certification made according to the principle of verification is not the only form of certification. The philosophy of language is one of the most interesting currents born in modern philosophy and one of its great representatives is Ludwig Wittgenstein. The application of this method to religious language brought relief to religion. This approach, since it deals with a religious assertion in linguistic composition. This approach, as it treats a religious expression within the linguistic composition, prevents some of the dangers posed by reductionist and abstract approaches. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 90-102
8Midterm Exam
9The problem of evil - theodicy The term ‘theodise’, formed from the Greek words ‘theos’ - God, and ‘someone’ - justice, was first used by the German philosopher Gottfried Leibniz in his work Essais de Theodicée. This term indicates the attempt to prove that divine justice remains untouched by the existence of evil. As a problem, as we said above, it was first posed as a question by Epicurus, who said: "If you say that god / winds / has good intentions, then why does evil exist in the world?". Evils: 1- Physical / Natural: Evils which arise as a result of natural causes such as earthquakes, floods, meteor showers, fires are called "Physical or natural evils"; 2- Moral: The evils which come for human or human causes are called "Moral evils". These generally contain injustice, revenge, cause pain, and reflect negative character traits. Ex. murders, rapes and other injustices like these; 3- Metaphysical: The evils that arise as a result of being of the imperfect world, mortal and limited man are called "Metaphysical evils", so that they do not depend on either man or nature. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 169-181
10The religious and science From the discussions on this issue have emerged several theses: 1- Religion and science collide with each other; 2- Religion and science are separated from each other; 3- Religion and science coincide with each other. No scientific explanation has been invented to prove or disprove religion. No scientific branch (biology, chemistry, physics, etc.) has been invented for such a purpose. Science is a discipline, which is used to explain the causes of natural phenomena in the world. This discipline which has this purpose, if you use it to prove or disprove religion, is a misuse. If science is used to explain something religious, for or against, it is a misuse and in this case it damages more religion. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 182-199
11The actual problems of the relationship religion -science In scientific judgments, personal thoughts, feelings, etc. should not play a role. as scientific activity is not personal. Scientific conclusions should not be confused at the time of transfer to everyday life. Although science has influenced many areas of life, the expression "scientific point of view", the word "scientific" is a term that goes beyond science. Second, science deals with generalizations. The scientist conducts observations, experiments, collects evidence and tries not to overlook anything. But he considers them as a "one-to-one reflection of the general." Something that only happens once does not enter the field of science. Ex. The miracles of the prophets. Religious claims cannot be substantiated or refuted by scientific criteria, there is no need for them. This is best shown by the Philosophy of Language. Religious assertions are propositional attitudes. Because they cannot distinguish an assertion / proposition from a propositional attitude, it seems that religious assertions can be substantiated by science and logic. What is Proposition and Propositional Attitude? Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 200-213
12The religious pluralism There are considerable differences between theologians belonging to the same "camp" or religion and many features of overlap between different approaches. 1. Exclusivity: only those who listen to the proclaimed gospel and explicitly accept Islam / Christianity are saved; 2. Inclusivism: Islam / Christianity is the normative revelation of God, although salvation is possible outside of this belief, but this salvation always comes from this belief .; 3. Pluralism: all religions are equal and valid paths to the only divine reality and Islam / Christianity is a revelation among many other revelations equally equal and valid; The philosopher of religion, of English origin, John Hick, has developed a pluralistic position primarily by engaging in dialogue with Western philosophy and world religions. It would be instructive to look in more detail at Hick's thesis, which combines many of the emphases in the aforementioned pluralistic approaches. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 221-250
13The relationship between religion and moral Can one be a moral person without being religious? Where is the moral basis? Religion or conscience? In the present century some people, considering mental progress, claim that religion is not necessary, but even morality, even though it has been proven that a society cannot live without morality. These foundations of morality tend to burden the conscience, and thus, there is no need for religion. Here are some approaches to the religious-moral connection: 1. Religion is harmful to morality. 2. Religion has nothing to do with morality. 3. Religion is beneficial to morality. 4. Religion is necessary for morality. Kant takes this thought further by also presenting God as the postulate of the existence of morality. Without God morality cannot exist. Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 214-220
14Life after death Although death is as much a part of life as life, people generally tend to think that life is good and death is bad. It can even be said that few things make people think as deeply as death: Is death an extinction? Is there life after death Death is mentioned in philosophy, especially where one wants to express the meaning and significance of life. Thoughts and beliefs about death played a large part in shaping optimistic and pessimistic worldviews. Some saw death as a catastrophe that ended all success in life: Throughout history, the number of those who said "Since there is death, then nothing has a meaning and value at the last point" has not been small. On the other hand, according to some, life acquires its true meaning and value only through death. Man is a mortal being. Does this situation scare you? If the answer to this question were yes, the words expressed to overcome the fear of death would have no meaning and value. Why are people, or most people, afraid of death ?; 1. Belief in immortality; 2. The Basics of the Belief of Immortality; 3. The question of the form of life after death and Ghazali's critique of philosophers on the "Resurrection of bodies". Cafer Sadık Yaran, Din Felsefisine Giriş, Dem Yay., İstanbul, 2012 page. 251-271
15Review of course
16Final Exam
Other References
Laboratory Work
Computer Usage
Learning Outcomes and Competences
1Studentët do të mësojnë termat themelore të filozofisë së fesë.
2Studentët do të përfitojnë njohuri rreth problemeve kryesore të filozofisë së fesë.
3Studentët do të përftojnë aftësinë për të interpretuar çështjet dhe problemet kryesore të filozofisë së fese.
Course Evaluation Methods
In-term studies Quantity Percentage
Term Projects00
Contribution of in-term studies to overall grade40
Contribution of final examination to overall grade60
ECTS (Allocated Based on Student) Workload
Activities Quantity Duration
Total Workload
Course Duration (Including the exam week : 16 x Total course hours) 16348
Hours for off-the-classroom study (Pre-study, practice) 14798
Assignments 000
Midterms 111
Final examination 111
Other 000
Total Work Load 148
Total Work Load / 25 (hours) 5.92

Get Syllabus PDF (Albanian) Get Syllabus PDF (English)