Argument from personal experience

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The argument from personal experience is an argument for God's existence on the basis of a personal religious experience.

An example: "Jesus appeared to me in a vision, thus I know the doctrine of Christianity is true."


Personal experiences are subjective, and are not evidence available to every person.

Personal experiences are used by believers of all religions, as well as believers in the paranormal and ghosts. It is thus impossible to tell if any religion is valid based on personal experience.

We know the the mechanics of the mind can mislead, and the intentional stance often leads people to see agency when there is none.

People never report these types of personal revelations from deities that they have had little or no previous exposure to, for example a Muslim in Saudi Arabia reporting an encounter with the Holy Spirit, or a Mormon reporting a vision of Vishnu. This suggests that one's memory of such experiences is heavily influenced by one's pre-existing belief system.

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