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Title: Wiktor Nesmelows Religionsphilosophie
Subtitle: Der Aufschwung von der Persönlichkeit zu Gott
Author(s): ZOLOTUKHIN, Vsevolod V.
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 83    Issue: 3   Date: 2021   
Pages: 457-481
DOI: 10.2143/TVF.83.3.3289990

Abstract :
This paper addresses Viktor Ivanovich Nesmelov’s philosophy of religion, which was elaborated as a part of an integral project of religious anthropology. Following the path of his teacher Veniamin A. Snegirev, who had earlier sketched the doctrine of religious feeling, Nesmelov hoped to argue for God’s existence through concentrating solely on the analysis of inner experience. As Nesmelov argued, the inner unconditionality of the human Me points directly to the divine Personality; the former is the reflection of the latter. Therefore, the transcendent reality shines through the structure of the human psyche. Referring to German Idealism Nesmelov characterized this feature of personal life as intellectual contemplation, i.e., as a faculty to distinguish immanently between the phenomenon and the thing-in-itself as well as between the alive and the dead. The paper demonstrates that Nesmelov’s prudent theoretical arguments, based on Kantian criticism, from the one side, allows for the avoidance of some weak points of the German religious sentimentalism; from the other side, they give opportunity to justify theism by means of psychological arguments. At the same time, the general weakness of Nesmelov’s standpoint consists in its merely speculative form, which seems to become an anachronism at the beginning of the 20th century.

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