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Philo

Volume 3, Issue 1, Spring-Summer 2000

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Displaying: 1-10 of 11 documents


editorial
1. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Keith M. Parsons Ongoing Debates
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papers
2. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Matt McCormick Why God Cannot Think: Kant, Omnipresence, and Consciousness
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It has been argued that God is omnipresent, that is, present in all places and in all times. Omnipresence is also implied by God’s knowledge, power, and perfection. A Kantian argument shows that in order to be self-aware, apply concepts, and form judgments, in short, to have a mind, there must be objects that are external to a being that it can become aware of and grasp itself in relationship to. There can be no external objects for an omnipresent God, so he cannot have a mind.
3. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Owen McLeod Is There a Moral Obligation to Obey God?
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A widespread view among theists is that there is a moral obligation to obey God’s commands. In this paper, four arguments for this view are considered: the argument from beneficence; the argument from property rights; the argument from justice; and the argument from omnipotence and moral perfection. It is argued that none of these arguments succeeds in showing that there is a moral obligation to obey God’s commands. The paper concludes with the suggestion that there might be, nevertheless, weighty and specifically religious (as distinct from moral) reasons to obey God.
4. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Basil Smith Plantinga and Wittgenstein on Properly Basic Beliefs
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Alvin Plantinga argues that secular evidential ism must be false because the criteria of properly basic beliefs are too restrictive or incoherent. I argue that Plantinga’s arguments are unsound, and this is easily seen against what Wittgenstein implies about evidentialism.
discussion
5. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Stephen T. Davis The Rationality of Resurrection for Christians: A Rejoinder
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The present paper is a rejoinder to Michael Martin’s “Reply to Davis” (Philo vol. 2, no. 1), which was a response to my “Is Belief in theResurrection Rational? A Response to Michael Martin” (ibid.), which was itself a response to Martin’s “Why the Resurrection is Initially Improbable” (Philo vol. 1, no. 1), which in turn was a critique of various of my own writings on resurrection, especially Risen Indeed: Making Sense of the Resurrection.
6. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Michael Martin Christianity and the Rationality of the Resurrection
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In my “Reply to Davis” (Philo vol. 2, no. 1) I defended two theses: First, even for Christians the initial probability of the Resurrection is very low. Second, the historical evidence for the Resurrection is not strong enough to overcome this initial improbability. Consequently, I maintained that belief in the Resurrection is not rational even for Christians. In his latest reply, “The Rationality of Resurrection for Christians: A Rejoinder” (present issue), Stephen T. Davis emphasizes that he is only defending the rationality of belief in the Resurrection for Christians, not for non-Christian supernaturalists. Presumably this point is emphasized by Davis because he supposes that I have at best shown that belief in the Resurrection is not rational for non-Christian supernaturalists. However, this is not so. In this reply I will defend the two theses stated above.
7. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
George Nakhnikian Quantum Cosmology, Theistic Philosophical Cosmology and the Existence Question
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In a recent essay, Quentin Smith revisits a question of philosophical cosmology. Why does the universe exist? This is one way of asking the existence question EQ. Smith notes that all theistic philosophical cosmologists have answered this question in terms of God’s creative choice. Smith favors an “atheistic” philosophical answer: “The universe exists because it has an unconditional probability of existing based on a fundamental law of nature.” He further declares: “This law of nature ... is inconsistent with theism and implies that God does not exist.” The structure of Smith's reasoning in defense of these claims is the following: (1) The answer to EQ of theistic philosophical cosmologists is logically inconsistent with the answer of atheistic philosophical cosmologists. (2) Therefore, theistic and atheistic philosophical cosmologies are logically inconsistent with each other. (3) The atheistic answer to EQ is a complete answer to EQ. (4) Therefore, theism is demonstrably false. I shall argue that Smith’s reasoning in defense of (1) is not sound. From that, it follows that (2) is not a proven truth. Assumption (3) is controversial, and in the present context question-begging. It presupposes that materialism is true. Therefore, (4) is not a proven truth.
8. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Quentin Smith Concerning the Metaphysical Necessity of the Universe Beginning Uncaused: A Reply to George Nakhnikian
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In George Nakhnikian’s interesting and stimulating paper, “Quantum Cosmology, Theistic Philosophical Cosmology, and the Existence Question” (present issue) he addresses the fundamental issue of whether it is metaphysically possible or justifiable to believe that our universe began to exist without a cause, divine or otherwise. His conclusion is negative, and he argues that, contrary to my views, quantum cosmology is consistent with theism. In this paper, I shall evaluate Nakhnikian’s arguments.
9. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Victor Reppert Reply to Parsons and Lippard on the Argument from Reason
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10. Philo: Volume > 3 > Issue: 1
Keith M. Parsons Further Reflections on the Argument from Reason
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In this essay I respond to the critical remarks made by Prof. Reppert in “Reply to Parsons and Lippard on the Argument from Reason” (present issue). I also provide a critique of Reppert’s original article, “The Argument from Reason,” in Philo vol. 2, no. 1 (Spring-Summer 1999).