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Naturalism in Religion: Eastern and Western Perspectives as Reflected in Swami Vivekananda and John Dewey's Philosophy

Naturalism in religion today is generally associated with a rejection of most forms of religious practices. However in the early twentieth century America, naturalism, in its methodological form, was used to defend the core truths of religion rather than oppose it by two prominent thinkers, one from the Eastern and the other from the Western world, namely Swami Vivekananda, the Indian spiritual teacher and John Dewey, the great American philosopher. This paper intends to show how Naturalistic interpretation of religion assumed two completely different directions under these thinkers and yet the foundations of religion were secured in divergent ways by their efforts.

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