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The Monist

Volume 96, Issue 3, July 2013

Naturalizing Religious Belief

Steven Horst
Pages 377-398
DOI: 10.5840/monist201396317

Notions of Intuition in the Cognitive Science of Religion

This article examines the notions of “intuitive” and “counterintuitive” beliefs and concepts in cognitive science of religion. “Intuitive” states are contrasted with those that are products of explicit, conscious reasoning. In many cases the intuitions are grounded in the implicit rules of mental models, frames, or schemas. I argue that the pathway from intuitive to high theological concepts and beliefs may be distinct from that from intuitions to “folk religion,” and discuss how Christian theology might best interpret the results of studies in cognitive psychology of religion.