This project examines and challenges the West's generally accepted two category approach to the world's belief systems. That is, it will deconstruct the religion / science `paradigm' that has developed over the past two centuries. It will argue that the dichotomy between the two categories was created by modernity for the purpose of establishing an exclusive view believed to be based on knowledge. This exclusive view, philosophical naturalism (science), was set in opposition to all alternative views identified as religion. As the exclusive view, though constructed on a defective foundation of knowledge, philosophical naturalism, nonetheless, became the privileged interpreter and explainer of reality in the academy of the Western world.
As a work in the area of epistemology and the philosophy of religion, this project will challenge philosophical naturalism's claim to knowledge. The approach will be philosophical and historical critically assessing both modernity's and postmodernity's basis for knowledge. Without a rational basis for exclusive knowledge the popular dichotomy dissolves. The implications of this dissolution for `religious studies' will be addressed by offering an alternative scheme that provides a more plausible way to divide the world's belief systems.