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In recent popular debate concerning the relationship between religion and contemporary philosophy and the natural sciences, two pervasive tendencies can be identified, these being what might be called ‘incompatibilist’ and ‘assimilationist’ approaches.1 In what follows, I will maintain that neither of these is adequate to the task of seriously thinking through the relationship between rational-empirical and religious interpretations of the world.2 But further, drawing heavily on the work of Adriaan Peperzak, I will maintain that the crucial shortcoming of both approaches is that they fail to recognise the essentially derivative nature of both kinds of discourse, and their rootedness in something much more primal and basic; if also, by definition, something vastly more difficult to elaborate.

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Open Access Book Chapter

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“This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of a chapter published in Religion and Culture in Dialogue: East and West Perspectives. The final authenticated version is available online at:

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