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Displaying: 1-20 of 23 documents


1. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Craig J. Hazen Editor’s Introduction
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articles
2. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Dallas Willard Intentionality and the Substance of the Self
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The aim of this paper is to provide a way of thinking about the human self or person that does not simply lose it in the objects of its experiences, but gives it substance in terms of those experiences themselves. They are characteristically “of ” or “about” objects—a feature called “intentionality.” After discussing some well-known failures (largely Empiricist) to capture the self without intentionality, I sketch Husserl’s presentation of consciousness and life as a massive totality of synchronic and diachronic intentionalities that allows us to understand what persons actually do, for example, in mastering fields of research or leading a moral life.
3. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
J. P. Moreland Substance Dualism and the Argument from Self-Awareness
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There are two tasks for any adequate philosophy of mind: (1) articulate one’s position and explain why dualism is the commonsense view; (2) defend one’s position. I believe that there is an argument that simultaneously satisfies both desiderata in a non–ad hoc way and, thus, the argument can thereby claim the virtue of theoretical simplicity in its favor. In what follows, I shall present the argument and defend its most crucial premise, respond to three criticisms that have been raised against it, and draw out one dialectical implication of the argument.
4. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Mihretu P. Guta Frank Jackson’s Location Problem and Argument from the Self
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E. J. Lowe argues in Personal Agency that the self is physically embodied yet not identical with any physical body, nor with any part of a physical body, such as the brain. For Lowe, the self is an agent that is capable of carrying out intentional actions. Call this the thesis about the self (TS). In this paper my purpose is to develop and defend TS and argue that Frank Jackson’s serious metaphysics (SM) fails to account for the nature of the self. This paper is outlined as follows: Section I presents Lowe’s theory of the self. In section II, I present Jackson’s central claims of SM. In section III, I develop Jackson’s SM as an objection against Lowe’s TS. In section IV, I respond to objections raised against Lowe’s TS and then critique Jackson’s claim that if an entity is not locatable within the framework of physicalism it should be eliminated. In section V, I conclude that Lowe’s TS is superior to Jackson’s SM.
5. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Angus Menuge The Ontological Argument from Reason: Why Compatibilist Accounts of Reasoning Fail
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The ontological argument from reason aims to show that deliberative reasoning cannot be located in a naturalistic ontology, because such reasoning requires a unified, enduring self with libertarian free will. The most popular way of avoiding this argument is to claim that some version of naturalistic compatibilism suffices for human reason, because even in a world of event causation, some creatures may be responsive to reason. In this paper, I argue that the best versions of this approach either smuggle in nonnaturalistic commitments or else cannot distinguish between compulsive rationality merely occurring in someone’s brain from reasoning an agent does.
6. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Jerry L. Walls Why No Classical Theist, Let Alone Orthodox Christian, Should Ever Be a Compatibilist
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I argue that no classical theist, and even more no orthodox Christian, should affirm compatibilism in our world. However plausible compatibilism may be on atheistic assumptions, bringing God into the equation should radically alter our judgment on this ongoing controversy. In particular, if freedom and determinism are compatible, then God could have created a world in which all persons freely did only the good at all times. Given this implication of compatibilism, three issues that are already challenging become extraordinarily more difficult, if not insuperable, namely: moral responsibility, the problem of evil, and the orthodox doctrine of eternal damnation.
7. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
R. Scott Smith Finitude, Fallenness, and Immediacy: Husserlian Replies to Westphal and Smith
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Merold Westphal and James K. A. Smith argue forcefully that Christians should embrace the postmodern turn to interpretation. They draw upon Derrida and Heidegger, and they criticize Edmund Husserl’s “metaphysics of presence” and our ability to know reality directly. They reject his epistemology as modern and arrogant, as an attempt to gain pristine knowledge. But I argue that they radically misunderstand and therefore wrongly reject Husserl. This will allow me to show why their view, that “everything is interpretation,” is mistaken. It also will allow me to show why Husserl’s earlier work shows us how we can know reality immediately.
8. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Paul Gould Theistic Activism: A New Problem and Solution
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Platonic theists have fallen on hard days. Theologically, it is argued that Platonism is unacceptable for the traditional theist, violating the aseity-sovereignty doctrine. Philosophically, Platonic theism suffers from an unforgiveable sin—incoherence. Understandably, the arguments in the literature are advanced as generically as possible, seeking metaphysical thinness in order to achieve clarity. I argue that this way of engaging the debate over the possibility of Platonic theism will only take one so far. What is needed is a bit of serious (and substantial) metaphysics. I engage in such serious metaphysics on behalf of one kind of Platonic Theist, the Theistic Activist, arguing that a new problem and solution surfaces when considering the substance-property nexus. Further, the solution on offer to this new problem shows promise in addressing more generic arguments against the possibility of Platonic theism.
philosophical notes
9. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Donny Swanson Nancey Murphy on the Distinctiveness of Being Human
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In this paper I examine Nancey Murphy’s claim that human persons are distinct on account of the degree to which they exercise functional capacities. I contend that these capacities, which Murphy says are important to God, not only constitute human distinctiveness but also constitute the intrinsic moral value of humans. As such, her position implies that because human moral value is had by virtue of functional capacities and, because such capacities admit of degrees, human moral value admits of degrees. I conclude by arguing that Murphy’s notion of human distinctiveness seriously undermines the idea that humans enjoy moral equality.
10. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Robert Larmer Misunderstanding Hume’s Argument against Miracles: A Response to Gregory L. Bock
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In his recent paper, “Understanding David Hume’s Argument against Miracles,” Gregory Bock takes the increasingly popular position that Hume’s intent in “Of Miracles” was not to argue that testimony is in principle incapable of grounding a rational belief in miracles, but rather that it is in principle incapable of grounding a rational belief in miracles that could act as the foundation for a religion. I argue that this interpretation of the text does not withstand critical scrutiny.
11. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Gregory L. Bock Hume and Religious Miracles: A Reply to Robert Larmer
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Robert Larmer critiques my view that the correct interpretation of David Hume’s argument against miracles in “Of Miracles” is that no testimony of a miracle can serve as the foundation of a religion. Larmer thinks that there is no unified argument in the section but says that Hume’s essential argument is that there can never be a justification for believing that a miracle has occurred on the basis of testimony. I raise a number of problems with Larmer’s interpretation, not the least of which is the fact that Hume explicitly contradicts such a reading.
12. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Adam Omelianchuk Ontologically Grounded Subordination: A Reply to Steven B. Cowan
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In a recent article Steven Cowan defended the claim that female subordination and male authority are merely functional differences. Drawing upon insights from Natural Law, I argue that complementarianism typically speaks of these functions as proper functions of male and female designs, thus making men and women metaphysically unequal in being. Furthermore, I maintain that the function serving as a means to an end is less valuable than the function having authority to direct the end. Hence, Cowan fails to defeat the objection that the claim that women are equal to men in being, but subordinate in role, is incoherent.
13. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Steven B. Cowan Complementarianism Unfazed: A Reply to Adam Omelianchuk
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Adam Omelianchuk argues that my defense of the distinction between woman’s equality in being and subordinate role fails. I respond that his case misses the point of certain aspects of my argument, that it begs the main question, and that it depends upon an unclear notion of metaphysical equality/inferiority.
14. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
James Anderson No Dilemma for the Proponent of the Transcendental Argument: A Response to David Reiter
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David Reiter has recently argued that presuppositionalist apologists who champion the transcendental argument for God’s existence (TAG) face a dilemma: depending on what conclusion the argument is supposed to establish, either TAG is inadequate to deliver that conclusion or else TAG is superfluous (thus bringing into question claims about its importance and distinctiveness as a theistic argument). By way of reply, I contend that several plausible lines of response are available to the proponent of TAG in the face of this purported dilemma. I hope thereby to advance scholarly discussion of TAG by clarifying its structure, content, and goal.
15. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
David Reiter Rejoinder to James Anderson
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My original dilemma claimed that the transcendental argument for God’s existence is either superfluous (if the goal is to establish the actual existence of God) or inadequate (if the goal is to establish the necessary existence of God). In this rejoinder to James Anderson, I begin by noting some important points of agreement. I then clarify the differences between pattern-I, pattern-II, and pattern-III theistic arguments. I comment on each of Anderson’s three proposed lines of response and defend my original dilemma, on the assumption that TAG is formulated as a pattern-II argument.
16. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
John Warwick Montgomery Apologetics Insights from the Thought of I. J. Good
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The late I. J. (“Jack”) Good, a British mathematician, played a significant role at Bletchley Park in breaking the German Enigma code and therefore contributed mightily to the allied victory in World War II. Though not a Christian believer, Good’s approach to epistemological issues and his understanding of probability offer valuable insights to those engaged in a serious Christian apologetic. Moreover, Good’s relationship with Marcello Truzzi, critic of naïve thinking in parapsychology and the occult and who directly influenced skeptic Carl Sagan, makes Good of more than passing philosophical interest.
book reviews
17. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Joel A. Schwartz Justice: Rights and Wrongs
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18. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Travis Dickinson Justification without Awareness: A Defense of Epistemic Externalism
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19. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Ross Inman The Structure of Objects
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20. Philosophia Christi: Volume > 13 > Issue: 1
Eric B. Oldenburg The Love of Wisdom: A Christian Introduction to Philosophy
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