Ludwig Wittgenstein: Faith and Language

Wittgenstein in many ways opened quite a few vistas for me to re-examine my epistemological and existential bearings. The first excerpt here from 1984 gives a rather crisp and lucid account of Wittgenstein’s ‘reliogiosity’ and his piercing contemplation of the notion of Faith-God. The second excerpt (Bryan Magee in conversation with Professor Anthony Quinton) provides a glimpse into his central and important philosophy of language, both the pragmatic view of language as well as the logical view. The first excerpt is split into two parts and the second excerpt is split into five.


Part 1

Wittgenstein - Sea of Faith - BBC documentary (Part 1 of 2)

Part 2

Wittgenstein - Sea of Faith - BBC documentary (Part 2 of 2)


Part 1

Anthony Quinton on Ludwig Wittgenstein: Section 1

Part 2

Anthony Quinton on Ludwig Wittgenstein: Section 2

Part 3

Anthony Quinton on Ludwig Wittgenstein: Section 3

Part 4

Anthony Quinton on Ludwig Wittgenstein: Section 4

Part 5

Anthony Quinton on Ludwig Wittgenstein: Section 5

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12 Comments on "Ludwig Wittgenstein: Faith and Language"

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E Mayse

Wittgenstein stated ‘the limits of my language mean the limits of my world’ however it is also apprent that he changed his mind on this theory by the end of his career. Thank you for the post x

Marcus N

It has just struck me that, although Wittgenstein and Heidegger were alive at the same time and were similarly aged (give or take), I’ve never seen any literature about their views on each other or their relationship to each other.


he was an intense fellow, no denying that,,, :)


most thinkers appear to be unsocial hermits. lol


The emphasis on comprehending language and its limitations and usages, manipulations, have been matter of philosophic reflection for quite some time…but I think it was W who put it across in its primal state. Many are indebted to him.


A Beautiful Mind. :)


…the meaning of life is to be found in the vanishing of the problem……ponder ponder!


I will recommend Ray Monks’ biography “Wittgenstein”. Good read and insight.


Ontology: “Die Welt ist alles, was der Fall ist.”. :)


My two bits! When Wittgenstein’s ideas are translated into untechnical everyday language, his ideas seem to lack profundity. When his ideas are left in his own words, his ideas seem impenetable. But I guess that’s what much of philosophy is all about. :)


early Wittgenstein (Tractatus) is supposed to synthesize his ideas on language and philosophy. I’m trying to understand Tractatus and it has been difficult to say the least. what an amazingly complex mind…


Hitler and Wittgenstein were born about a week apart and went to the same Technical School in Linz, although they were in different school years. Also, I recollect a suggestion in a book “Wittgenstein’s Poker” that Wittgenstein may have gone to Germany after acquiring the safety of British citizenship to bribe the safety of his sisters. I am curious to know more because this might help understand Wittgenstein’s philosophical thought better. Just thinking out loud.