The SE communities already include Buddhism, Hinduism, Christianity, Islam and there is even a Biblical Hermeneutics community. Anyone posting theological questions can consult those communities.

Also, philosophy.SE already has a "philosophy of religion" tag.

Simply put, theology (i.e. study of deity) has not one iota of relevance to philosophy (i.e. love of wisdom, read: respect for obtaining knowledge) except as "philosophy" is misnomer for "a way of looking at things" or weltanschauung:


Theology is the field of study and analysis that treats of God and of God's attributes and relations to the universe; the study of divine things or religious truth; divinity.

...furthermore, "religious truth" is oxymoron.

If you simply disagree with my assessment of the case regarding theology, deity or "religious truth" please cite one single example of a knowledge claim confirmed or advanced by theology; one single example of religious truth which is not oxymoron; or, one single instance of deity which is not merely weltanschauung or bad poetry.

I'll wait.

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  • @Not_Here Cute, but false as the statement is not a matter of opinion. Truth is a condition of propositions to which the adjective "religious" not only adds nothing, but in fact contradicts. Truth is correspondence of utterance and what is, not utterance and what is "to religion".
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 21:44
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    Not really, you've said a whole lot of opinions in this post and in the comments on Keelan's answer but not many facts. You have a 100% irrefutable proof of all religion being false? Why aren't you the most published author in the world; why haven't I ever heard of you other than on this site? Or are you saying "my rigid, self imposed definitions of words clearly shows that tautologically religion has to be false"? If thats the case, you're doing some horribly boring, trivial philosophy that doesn't help anything. At the very least its a contingent fact that there are no religious truths.
    – Not_Here
    Mar 13, 2017 at 21:59
  • Thats not the same as it being an oxymoron, which is a noun not an adjective just so you're aware.
    – Not_Here
    Mar 13, 2017 at 21:59
  • @Not_Here of course there is no "proof of all religion being false" - whether 100% irrefutable or otherwise. You have simply mis-read the statement: "religious truth" is oxymoron. This is not a statement that "religion is false" and such a statement would likewise a mis-read (it would be a mistake to say "misunderstanding") of falsifiability and the satisfiability of truth conditions.
    – MmmHmm
    Apr 16, 2017 at 23:32
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    Upvoted. I must admit to being strongly against this when I first saw it. Now in the light of this meta I am becoming more open to changing my mind. In any case a wider discussion seems useful. The main question-answer for context. Aug 18, 2019 at 3:43
  • I rather think that your question indicates why theology should not be excluded. The way to get it excluded would be to show it is not relevant to philosophy but this would require some study of it, thus making it relevant to philosophy. . .
    – user20253
    Nov 1, 2019 at 14:26

3 Answers 3


Can we? sure.

Should we? no.

We already have 300+ questions tagged Theology, including one of top ten highest voted questions. By construction, the nature of what is or is not on-topic for a given SE is determined by sociological considerations, not formal semantic ones -- an SE is what the users choose it to be. Given the number, and relatively high vote count of the questions tagged with I don't think that it is a candidate for removal.

I don't think that retagging -> (which is brought to mind by your mention of the tag) works either -- questions tagged with the latter tend to be about religion as a whole and, to me, lumping all of the questions that directly relate to gods' features and relationship to reality into that category would dilute the usefulness of these tags.

  • Exactly. For those who are not familiar, this gives a nice (though basic) introduction to the distinction between theology and philosophy and religion.
    – user2953
    Mar 13, 2017 at 22:26
  • A ratings game then - a popularity contest without heuristic standard? So why not vote for a question if it is "useful" enough to answer? Is answering the relegated to mere solicitation of rep points, or is the SE heuristic model something with merit? If with merit, how is this merit quantified or known - by popularity indicated from reputation votes? Weak.
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 22:29
  • @Keelan it is self evident that theology is study of deity and philosophy of religion the respect for obtaining knowledge by obligation to community through ritual and reverence.
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 22:30
  • @Mr.Kennedy I don't understand your "useful enough to answer" question. I tend to like the "making the internet a better place" formulation of the merit of SE's meta.stackexchange.com/a/124583/210552 though by no means am I dogmatic about it.
    – Dave
    Mar 13, 2017 at 22:42
  • Precisely my point: making philosophy.SE and SE better heuristically.
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 22:43

While this is not the place for questions like "what does Hindu scripture say about compassion?" or "when does lent start?", philosophy is important in systematic theology and therefore relevant to this site. For an example, see What are the philosophical issues with a non-spatial, non-temporal Being creating a spatial, temporal universe?.

When a physicist has a question about mathematics that arose from his study of physics, that question is accepted on Math.SE. Still, it is useful to have it tagged with "physics", because it says something about the contents of the question.

  • While philosophy may be important to systemic theology, systemic theology is wholly irrelevant to philosophy. The tag philosophy of religion adequately addresses this question which as Wehler points out is epistemically vacuous, hence irrelevant to philosophy. Stated as such, it is about creation and astrophysics, not deity, and otherwise appropriate for literary interpretation. Likewise, tagging the question "reference request" or "solicitation of opinion" would say something about the the content of the question...
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 13:23
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    @Mr.Kennedy as I have made clear, questions that arise from systematic theology can be philosophical. As such, they should be on topic here. The context in which these questions arise is not relevant for deciding whether they are on topic or not. As with physics questions on Math.SE, it is still interesting to know this context. May I ask what problem you are exactly trying to solve? If it's just that you don't like theology, perhaps ignored tags are an option? Whatever the answer to that question, it is about a philosophical claim.
    – user2953
    Mar 13, 2017 at 14:07
  • there are no "philosophical issues" with the question as it makes no "philosophical claim". Philosophy does not issue imponderables, nor does it solicit speculation or agreement regarding imponderables. You in fact accepted the answer which states as much "There are no philosophical issues with a creation that cannot prove its creator per se". The whole of theology is irrelevant to philosophy, hence, philosophy.SE need neither the tag nor the subject stated within its purview.
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 14:14
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    @Mr.Kennedy I did not say that the question makes philosophical claims, I said that the author that is cited there makes them, or at least says he makes them. This is not the place for you to push your ideas of what philosophy does or does not include upon others. If you think differently, provide arguments.
    – user2953
    Mar 13, 2017 at 14:35
  • The cited author makes no philosophical claim. That philosophy does not issue imponderables is axiomatic by virtue of etymological fact. You are of course free to insist upon your use of "philosophy" as misnomer for "issues imponderables" however the onus is upon you to justify such a use that contradicts 2500+ years of translation from the Greek.
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 14:39
  • @Mr.Kennedy "The attributes of God raise numerous questions and difficulties that deserve attention, especially from those with a philosophical cast of mind." is a philosophical claim. You keep repeating that theology is not philosophical, that it is not relevant, and does not belong here, nowhere did you explain why you think so - nor did you explain what exact problem you are trying to solve. I have shown multiple times how it is relevant. I'll wait until you come with an actual argument, because until you do this 'discussion' is pointless.
    – user2953
    Mar 13, 2017 at 15:03
  • Yes, you have claimed relevance but you have yet to demonstrate the relevance of theology to philosophy. As stated above, philosophy (read: respect for obtaining knowledge) is relevant to any "-ology" yet there is no knowledge to be obtained studying imponderables other than the self-evident and trivial fact that imponderables such as deity, the creator of creation, etc. are imponderable. Hence, there is no justification for theology as part of the purview of philosophy.SE and any philosophically relevant questions would fall under the category of philosophy of religion.
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 15:07
  • ""The attributes of God raise numerous questions and difficulties that deserve attention, especially from those with a philosophical cast of mind." is a philosophical claim." Nothing like begging the question, eh?
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 13, 2017 at 15:12
  • when you declare that you've made clear that questions arising from systematic theology can be philosophical, aren't you just pushing your own personal agenda (or "personal philosophy" if you prefer the colloquial oxymoron) - not unlike the sly little weaver insisting that arising questions are fine raiments of gold when there is no cloth there at all?
    – MmmHmm
    Mar 14, 2017 at 0:59


I don't generally sympathize with the logical positivism style blanket rejection of metaphysics; a pov which questioners like this one carry.


When I see questions like this standing without a single vtc or even downvote so far I must ask the question that @mr.kennedy asks though from a quite different place:

How come this is allowed here?


How many people here even understand the language (without Google's help)?

My own position

What is allowed / on topic here should be philosophy. When theology is genuinely philosophical it's on topic; theology qua theology not.

AFAIC if the proportion Aquinas questions and William of Ockham questions were inverted I would consider theology on phil-SE to be healthy.

And no: invoking Occam's razor without even knowing William of Ockham to be a great Christian theologian doesn't qualify.

I wonder what others think?


In case it seem there is any specialness accorded by me to christian specific teachings see my comment on this question.

From the opposite side I find questions like this seem (to me) to not be about theology ie it's inappropriately tagged. How do others feel?

Finally this question itself was of no interest to me until some inconsistent and unpleasant behavior around the theology tag discussed here

Seems to have become community wiki by mistake (??)

So making again without cw since there were no comments yet

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    I agree with you although I am still trying to decide whether it is good on this site to combine these tags or leave them apart. Tags help people find posts. I for one don't know what philosophy-of-religion means, but I intuitively know what theology means. For what it's worth, I also do not sympathize with positivism although I like reading questions and answers from that perspective. I imagine the intent of this original post to remove the theology tag was hostility to religion. Aug 21, 2019 at 13:55
  • Thanks @FrankHubeny. I've made a number of suggestions/observations. Which are you in agreement with? Aug 21, 2019 at 23:55
  • Perhaps the only thing I agree with is the possibility that these two tags could be joined as synonyms. However, after re-reading this question, thinking about it another day and sensing hostility toward religion by the OP of this question, I now prefer they stay separate. Aug 22, 2019 at 4:08

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