LSAT and Law School Admissions Forum

Get expert LSAT preparation and law school admissions advice from PowerScore Test Preparation.

 Francis O'Rourke
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 471
  • Joined: Mar 10, 2017
Hi sodomojo,

What you saw was correct: the music critic is seeing a connection between "divinely inspired" and "religious" that is not certain. When you see such a clear jump in logic, you are very close to picking out the flaw in the reasoning.

If author had said something such as "Vierne's works are divinely inspired, therefore his music is a great work of art" then I would expect the correct answer to be very close to your prephrase: the music critic assumes that if a work is divinely inspired then it is a great work of art.

There is something that you need to catch here and be on the look out for. The words religious and divine inspired are very closely linked in meaning. There are some situations in which it would be okay to use either one. For example, you can describe a vision or an epiphany as a religious experience or as a divine experience.

Once you see that the author jumps from A to B, and A and B can be used synonymously in a different context, then you should expect the flaw to describe a confusion in the author's use of these two words.

Your understanding of the flaw in this stimulus was valid. However, the correct answer choice described a more specific manifestation of the general flaw that you described. If you see an answer choice like this in the future (an answer that describes what you think is too specific for your prephrase) keep it for a moment as a contender. Consider if you could describe the flaw in this more specific way. In this case, it is not too much of a leap to say that 'religious' and 'divine' are closely related words.
  • Posts: 10
  • Joined: Sep 28, 2018

I see that the last post is somewhat similar to my original thought - I picked A. so if the last sentence of the stimulus had "Organ Symphonies of Louis Vieme are religious music", would that make ac A correct?

Thank you in advance.
 Malila Robinson
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 296
  • Joined: Feb 01, 2018
Hi Lsatdaily,
If you changed the stimulus to remove the term 'divinely inspired' then there would be no link in the stimulus to Answer A at all, since it is talking about all religious music being inspiring.
Hope that helps!
User avatar
  • Posts: 34
  • Joined: Jun 14, 2021
p1. Handel --> religious
p2. some say Louis --> NOT religious
cc. Those who say Louis is NOT religious are wrong because he is divinely inspired.

Religious =/= divine.
Confuses definitions.
User avatar
  • Posts: 1
  • Joined: Nov 20, 2023
Hi PowerScore,

Could you please help me understand why answer B is the correct choice? How was the word religious used with a different meaning or connotation in these instances? Other than what the author thought to be as religious.

What changed was the music critic's perception of what makes something "religious" music, as opposed to the actual use of the adjective itself. Religious means related to or believing in a religion; religious texts (texts that are related to religion), religious music (music related to religion), for me the implication or description of the word did not change. I agree that what could constitute religious music may not necessarily be what the critic describes. But how does that translate into the term being used with a different meaning other than something of a religious nature. In other words, the music critic may be mistaken in their interpretation of what makes certain music to be religious music, but the implication of the word religious remained the same.

What am I missing?

Thank you,
User avatar
 Jeff Wren
PowerScore Staff
  • PowerScore Staff
  • Posts: 291
  • Joined: Oct 19, 2022
Hi Ana,

So the argument begins by stating the opposing viewpoint (the viewpoint with which the music critic disagrees). These people argue that the organ symphonies of Louis Vierne are not religious music. Why do these people believe this and what exactly do these people mean by "religious music?"

What they mean is that Vierne's symphonies do not set to music familiar religious texts (such as passages from The Bible, for example). So when these people say that Vierne's symphonies are not religious music, they simply mean that the symphonies don't contain familiar religious texts as some other musical works (like Handel's) do.

The music critic disagrees with this view. The conclusion of the music critic's argument is "Quite the contrary." The reason that the critic believes that Vierne's symphonies are religious music is that the critic finds them "divinely inspired" (meaning religious in a completely different sense).

While you're correct that there can be different interpretations of what it means classify music as "religious," what you're not allowed to do is use a different interpretation/meaning of a term to try to attack an argument based on another definition.

Just to be clear, depending on how one defines "divinely inspired," (arguably) any music could be considered "divinely inspired," which would make all music religious according to the music critic. The problem is that isn't what was meant by religious music from those who claimed that Vierne's symphonies aren't religious music.

Get the most out of your LSAT Prep Plus subscription.

Analyze and track your performance with our Testing and Analytics Package.