Some people seem to be of the opinion that artificially-induced religious experiences somehow take from the veridicality of non-artificially-induced religious experiences. This is not compelling. Quoth Mark Anderson:
Our vision of a chair depends upon neurological activity. A neurologist can cause a patient to experience this and other visions simply by manipulating his brain--by introducing the appropriate drug, for example, or by manually stimulating the relevant neural pathways. This does not persuade us that there really no chairs, that our visions of chairs are nothing more than the electrical-chemical activity inside our skulls. Why then should we believe that artificially induced religious experiences or "the God center" in our brain implies the non-existence of the object of our mystical experience?Pure: Modernity, Philosophy, and the One (Sophia Perennis, 2009), p40.
Friday, December 17, 2010
Artificially-induced religious experiences
Since it's a brief post, I'll quote in full Steven Nemes quoting Mark Anderson: