rationalism

play
noun ra·tio·nal·ism \ˈrash-nə-ˌli-zəm, ˈra-shə-nə-ˌli-\

Definition of rationalism

  1. 1 :  reliance on reason as the basis for establishment of religious truth

  2. 2a :  a theory that reason is in itself a source of knowledge superior to and independent of sense perceptionsb :  a view that reason and experience rather than the nonrational are the fundamental criteria in the solution of problems

  3. 3 :  functionalism 2

rationalist

play \-nə-list\ noun

rationalist

or

rationalistic

play \ˌrash-nə-ˈlis-tik, ˌra-shə-nə-ˈlis-\ adjective

rationalistically

play \-ti-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

Recent Examples of rationalism from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rationalism.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of rationalism

circa 1732


RATIONALISM Defined for English Language Learners

rationalism

play
noun

Definition of rationalism for English Language Learners

  • philosophy : the belief that reason and experience and not emotions or religious beliefs should be the basis for your actions, opinions, etc.



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