A Philosophical Exploration

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Date(s) - Saturday, October 14, 2017
10:30 am - 12:30 pm

Lit and Phil


‘Kant and God’

When: Saturday 14 October 2017, 10.30 am – 12.30 pm

Where: The Literary & Philosophical Society (Lit & Phil), Lecture Room, 23 Westgate Rd, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1SE.

Whilst in general our meetings will be held at the Lit & Phil (with a few exceptions), the room itself within the building will switch between the Loftus Room, the Lecture Room, and occasionally, the Reference (aka Silence) Room.


An introduction to the theme for the session is given at the start of the meeting; it may be difficult to participate in the discussion without that context. Please aim to arrive shortly before the start time, so that we can begin the session promptly.

The answer that Kant gave to the question of God invokes fundamental concerns of ontology and epistemology, and his thinking continues to influence contemporary philosophical thinking. Kant, it is often claimed, is the father of modern Western philosophy, and his writing on God explicates that claim. The exact nature of Kant’s religious ideas continues to be the subject of heated philosophical debate. Viewpoints have ranged from the idea that Kant was an early and radical exponent of atheism to more critical treatments (deconstruction), epitomized by Nietzsche, who claimed that Kant had ‘theologian blood’. This session will invite us to question what view, if any, should prevail.

Reading for the session

The following resources available on the internet may prove useful when preparing for the session:

The following is an article from the Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy on Kant’s Philosophy of Religion: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/kant-religion/

Here is an article from the Internet Encyclopaedia of Philosophy on Immanuel Kant: Philosophy of Religion: http://www.iep.utm.edu/kant-rel/


A contribution of £2 is requested, for those attendees who can afford it, to cover the room hire costs.


Philosophical Explorations aims to apply philosophical thought and method to any subject matter or topic of concern to society or observant individuals within it. The idea is to approach any aspect of life, wearing a philosophical hat as it were, that is applying a measure of argumentation and justification, adhering to reason and logical precision, making use of cumulative philosophical thinking over the ages, broadening each subject to its full implications above and beyond particularities and contingencies, seeking that which underpins opinion by unravelling undisclosed basic assumptions and formulating an underlying existential position in life. Above all, Philosophical Explorations invites us to subject our stand to a dialogue with others, by opening up a space in the mind as a precondition of careful and considerate listening, an ongoing examination of our opinion in relation to that of others, a willingness and readiness to allow one’s own stand to incorporate, indeed be transformed, by the growing wisdom of the group in the process of philosophical exchange. What is therefore desirable in this group is a philosophical attitude and an openness of mind. The most commonly accepted definition of philosophy is that of “thinking about thinking”, that is a double move at the outset, where all reflections are simultaneously subjected to meta-reflections. This habit of mind, whilst not intuitive or normative in society, is at the very core and an indispensable attribute of Philosophical Explorations. Everyone is welcome to join in.

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