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Displaying: 1-11 of 11 documents

1. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Michael Czapkay Sudduth Can Religious Unbelief Be Proper Function Rational?
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This paper presents a critical analysis of Alvin Plantinga’s recent contention, developed in Warranted Christian Belief (forthcoming), that if theism is true, then it is unlikely that religious unbelief is the product of properly functioning, truth-aimed cognitive faculties. More specifically, Plantinga argues that, given his own model of properly basic theistic belief, religious unbelief would always depend on cognitive malfunction somewhere in a person’s noetic establishment. I argue that this claim is highly questionable and has adverse consequences for Plantinga’s epistemology of religious belief. Plantinga’s proper basicality thesis together with his view of rationality defeaters suggests that there are circumstances in which theistic belief would not be proper function rational even if theism is true.
2. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
George I. Mavrodes Innocence and Suicide
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In this paper I examine one line of argument against the claim that (some) suicide may be morally legitimate. This argument appeals to a putative moral principle that it is never licit to assault an innocent human life. I consider some related arguments in St. Augustine and St. Thomas, and I explore two possible senses of “innocent.” I argue that in one sense the putative moral principle is very implausible, and in neither sense is it true that all suicides assault an innocent life. So this line of argument fails to establish the desired universal prohibition of suicide.
3. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Michael Bergmann Might-Counterfactuals, Transworld Untrustworthiness and Plantinga’s Free Will Defence
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Plantinga’s Free Will Defense (FWD) employs the following proposition as a premise:◊TD. Possibly, every essence is transworld depraved.I argue that he fails to establish his intended conclusion because the denial of ◊TD is epistemically possible. I then consider an improved version of the FWD which relies on◊TU. Possibly, every essence is transworld untrustworthy.(The notion of transworld untrustworthiness is the might-counterfactual counterpart to Plantinga’s would-counterfactual notion of transworld depravity.) I argue that the denial of ◊TU is also epistemically possible and, therefore, that the improved FWD fares no better than the original at establishing the compatibility of God and evil.
4. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Helen E. Cullen Simone Weil on Greece’s Desire for the Ultimate Bridge to God: The Passion
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Simone Weil believed that Greece’s vocation was to build bridges between God and man. This paper argues that, in light of Weil’s “tradition of mystical thought,” the Christian vocation is an extension of the Greek. The search for the perfect bridge in Homer, Sophocles and Plato comes to fruition in the Passion of Christ. The Greek thinkers, especially Plato with his Perfectly Just Man, already had implicit knowledge of the Passion’s truth.
5. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Caleb Miller Creation, Redemption and Virtue
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In this paper, I defend the claim that Christian theology gives us good reason to think that virtue is relative to individuals and communities, i.e., that what character traits are virtues for individuals is relative to individuals and to the communities of which they are members. I begin by reviewing the theological claims that I take to be relevant. I then argue that these claims make it plausible to conclude that virtue is morally redemptive and therefore relative to individuals and communities. I then seek to use these conclusions to illuminate the discussion of the correctiveness of virtue. Finally I respond to some objections and suggest some further ways that my views could be developed.
6. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Graham Oppy Koons’ Cosmological Argument
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Robert Koons has recently defended what he claims is a successful argument for the existence of a necessary first cause, and which he develops by taking “a new look” at traditional arguments from contingency. I argue that Koons’ argument is less than successful; in particular, I claim that his attempt to “shift the burden of proof” to non-theists amounts to nothing more than an ill-disguised begging of one of the central questions upon which theists and non-theists disagree. I also argue that his interesting attempt to bridge (part of) the familiar gap between the claim that there is a necessary first cause and the claim that God exists is beset with numerous difficulties.
7. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Shane R. Cudney “Religion Without Religion”: Caputo, Derrida, and the Violence of Particularity
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Jack Caputo’s most recent book follows Derrida in proposing a “religion without religion”, a posture that, while committed to the general structure of religion, attempts to philosophically distance itself from specific, historical exemplifications of that structure. I propose that by determining what motivates the distinction between what is termed the “messianic” and “messianisms”, a space opens that allows us to call into question this “desert religion.” I will conclude by suggesting an alternative posture, one that attempts to honor both the universal structure of religion, and the particular, historical content of religion.
8. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Timothy O’Connor Simplicity and Creation
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According to many philosophical theologians, God is metaphysically simple: there is no real distinction among His attributes or even between attribute and existence itself. Here, I consider only one argument against the simplicity thesis. Its proponents claim that simplicity is incompatible with God’s having created another world, since simplicity entails that God is unchanging across possible worlds. For, they argue, different acts of creation involve different willings, which are distinct intrinsic states. I show that this is mistaken, by sketching an adequate account of reasons-guided activity that does not require distinct intrinsic states of willing corresponding to each possible act of creation.
9. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Eleonore Stump Dust, Determinism, and Frankfurt: A Reply to Goetz
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In a preceding issue of Faith and Philosophy Stewart Goetz criticized a paper of mine in which I try to show that libertarians need not be committed to the principle of alternative possibilities (PAP) and that Frankfurt-style counterexamples to PAP are no threat to libertarianism. In my view, the main problem with Goetz’s arguments is that Goetz does not properly understand my position. In this paper, I respond to Goetz by summarizing my position in as plain a way as possible. Goetz’s charge against my position has two parts, first, that it isn’t libertarian and, second, that it provides no good reason for libertarians to abandon PAP. This paper briefly presents my answers to these two parts of Goetz’s charge.
10. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
H. E. Baber Abba, Father: Inclusive Language and Theological Salience
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Questions about the use of “inclusive language” in Christian discourse are trivial but the discussion which surrounds them raises an exceedingly important question, namely that of whether gender is theologically salient-whether Christian doctrine either reveals theologically significant differences between men and women or prescribes different roles for them. Arguably both conservative support for sex roles and allegedly progressive doctrines about the theological significance of gender, race, ethnicity and sexual orientation are contrary to the radical teaching of the Gospel that in Christ there is no male or female, Greek or Jew, slave or free man.
notes and news
11. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 16 > Issue: 3
Notes and News
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