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Difference Between Philosophy and Religion

Philosophy vs Religion

Many have come to think that philosophy and religion are the same while some argue that the two are opposite sides of the same coin. However, these two concepts are just in part true.

Philosophy and religion are related. By general understanding, religion is composed of a set of morals, rules, principles, and ethics that serve to guide one’s way of living. Philosophy, on the other hand, is a bigger domain of discipline that tackles many concepts like: metaphysics, the search for the ultimate truth, knowledge, and life itself.

Although the two are the same in having to deal with man’s life, they are still very different in various aspects like the presence of observed rituals across all world religions and the absence of such in philosophy because the latter only deals more with how people should think. So an individual cannot be entirely religious without performing some rituals stipulated by his or her religion while this same person can still be philosophical even without engaging in some religious rituals.

Another distinction between the two is the strength of belief. Religion puts an emphasis on one’s belief as the core of his religiosity. This connects to the concept of faith – the strong belief in something even if there’s no empirical evidence of such a thing or phenomenon existing. Philosophy, by contrast, will only believe if a certain subject under argument is proven to be true by using tested means of reasoning. If there’s no clearly identifiable and explainable reason for such, then it is not immediately accepted as the truth.

Religion, although considered as a subset of philosophy, involves many supernatural beliefs and superstitions some of which are already too hard to believe that philosophers constantly argue against them. Nevertheless, some philosophers (especially those from the East) happen to be strong believers in faith as well. Thus, they believe in the meanings hidden in religion and its practices that help man understand himself and the truth of life much better than someone who has no religion or who has no belief in such.


1.Philosophy is a big discipline that encompasses many subject matters as opposed to religion that is just considered as one of the subsets of philosophy.
2.Philosophy does not include the practice of rituals unlike religion.
3.Compared to philosophy, religion has stronger beliefs and highlights the power of faith.
4.Religion has more beliefs in the superstitious and the supernatural.

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  1. THE author of this peice is obviously one of htose peope who considerd himself to not be religious. He refers ot Relgiion as invovled with SUperstitious and SUpernatural beleifs. Of coruse, SUperstition is defined as an unjustifiable beleif that lacks any evidence in external causation. That isn’t really part of most Religions. Nor is beleif int he SUernatural requirted.

    Then again, the Author also uses the old cobbler that Faith is beleiving in somethign one has no evidence for. This isn’t what Faith is, Faith is simply Trust or COnfidence, not beleif withotu Evidence.

    Religion and Philosophy are in Reality the same thing. Both are simply the beleif systems one hodls to, the way in which one understands the World.

    EVen the idea of Ritualism isnt correct. SOme Philosophies o advocte RItuals, and not all Religiosn cotain them.

    I’d also say everyone is Relgiious, some just prefer ot say theyhave a Philosophy instead of a Religion, due to negative associatons they have with the mer word Religion.

    • It may be fashionable to think of Philosophy and Religion as opposite sides of the same coin. However, the differences would suggest otherwise.
      All religions require its followers to believe in a concept that has no way of being proved. In some cases, as in the case of Roman Catholicism, the need to believe was so vital to the perpetrators that sinister systems were developed to force the belief or rather acceptance as is the case of the infamous Spanish Inquisition.
      Millions of people were put to death for originally refusing to accept the concept.
      There was never any such attempt on the part of philosophy to force its concept on anyone. It may be argued that higher institutes of learning in particular require students to recognize certain truisms, but these can be tested and rejected or accepted.
      Finally, it seems to me that Religion have been responsible for more wars and man’s inhumanity to man than Philosophy.

  2. Oh, forgot to hit notify.

  3. There is one concrete difference that is a certain indicator of whether you have encountered a religion or a philosophy. One is tax-exempt, the other is not.
    Hence the vehement disagreements over whether they are really one and the same with simply different viewpoints.

  4. Religion is philosophy while philosophy is not religion. In order words, religion is transcendental philosophy while philosophy is limited to what is abstracted from the transcendental nature of religion. Philosophy could be a form of religion or a tool for practicing a form of religion.

    Another way to explain the relation between religion and philosophy is that religion encompasses all about what is generally known as philosophy and more than this, while philosophy is the tool of any human mind that is philosophical for carrying out the process of knowing as much as it can, or is possible—the human mind being limited as a means of knowing.

    The distinction that is mostly or commonly made between religion and philosophy is that religion is based on faith while philosophy is based on human reason. But religion is not, strictly intended, based on faith, being also based on reason—as the application of reason to understanding the Trinity by St. Augustine and the argument between St. Thomas and St. Anselm show—while some positions in philosophy are based on faith or belief and not reason.

    As an illustration of this: when a philosopher posits that there is no God, he really means that he beliefs that there is no God, or that he does not believe that there is God because he is not able to establish experimentally or by any other means that there is no God.

    Generally, philosophers demand that the people of the religions should prove that there is God but the real necessity is the prove that there is no God by them. Therefore, for demanding that the people of the religions prove that there is God they are guilty of shifting duty or dodging the issue.

    Take note that some philosophers have established that there is God by reasoning from what is a posteriori (visible) or known to what is a priori (invisible) or not known. The philosophers that are anti-religion reject the fact established by them or the proof provided by them but, as was noted earlier, fail to establish that there is no God.

    • Sorry, but have you heard of the concept of the Devil’s Proof, Bertrand Russel’s Teapot or Carl Sagan’s Invisible Dragon before? If you’re going to make the claim that a being who generally doesn’t interact with people, not only exists but that your version of it is more truthful than other versions, I think you’re the one holding the burden of proof there.

      Certainly, the existence of a being who supposed exists outside of the physical realm can’t be explicitly and definitively ‘disproven’, but that doesn’t count as proof that it does, because then you have the problem of why you should only believe in that being and not others that can’t be verified ad infinitum. It is, however, possible to prove that if such a being were to exist, that it can’t satisfy the requirements of theodicy based on the state of the world around us – so we can refuse to believe in that sort of being without relying purely on ‘faith’.

      (And that argument about reasoning from what is known is rejected by non-religious philosophers because it isn’t inherent fact and isn’t sufficient to establish that there *is* a ‘God’; we therefore reject the versions of ‘God’ that posit theodicy.)

  5. Also, philosophy is multidisciplinary while Religion is specifically based on faithial beliefs.

    • No, Religion is not specifically baed on “Faithial” beleifs. There is no such word as Faithial. If you mean its Faith based, well, so is Science. The modern bashign of Faith is silly. Faith just means Trust, it does not mean beleif without evidence.

  6. A key difference between philosophy and religion is only religion can address “before birth” and “after death” questions. Philosophy and religion can both address the middle part. You might hear a philosopher express an opinion but since you cannot prove the argument, it is a “belief”.

  7. Religion is basically a tool to apply philosophy in a easy way for the people who can’t apply philosophy in their life in more wards if someone can apply philosophy in his life than simply he doesn’t need to be religious and I he can’t.. than he need to become a religious person to made a good society of humans

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