Revelation of the Good

Robert Merrihew Adams

in Finite and Infinite Goods

Published in print June 2002 | ISBN: 9780195153712
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199869381 | DOI:
Revelation of the Good

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This chapter proposes a doxastic practice epistemology for ethics, holding that we rightly, and probably inescapably, rely on belief‐forming dispositions that we have formed in learning social practices of evaluation. In the context of a theistic metaethics, the reliability of such practices and dispositions is explained in terms of a concept of “general revelation,” a concept that allows that some to whom ethical truths are revealed may be atheists. The chapter also expounds a conception of “special revelation” connected with historic religious traditions, in which particular possibilities of goodness may be empirically discovered and divine commands may be addressed to particular communities at particular times.

Keywords: atheism; divine command; epistemology; metaethics; moral belief; reliability; revelation; theism

Chapter.  11232 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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