Writings, 1902-1910 Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. According to James, what is inquiry designed for?

James states that inquiry is designed to determining the meaning or significance of something. Inquiry can lead to a proposition of value, and is the essential nature of a thing. Allowing for inquiry allows one to make an existential judgment.

2. How does James define religion?

James defines religion as feelings, acts, or experiences one has in solitude that relate to the divine. James claims that he has no intention of defining religion in a scientific sense. He can only define religion on an individual level because he sees religion as a personal thing.

3. For a man to experience the divine, what does James insist he must do?

James insists that for a man to experience the divine, he must first let go of his ego. James says that one must allow God to flow through them in order to experience a divine power. Without allowing it to happen, one is putting up a barrier to the divine.

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