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articles
1. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
William P. Alston Response to Hick
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This is a response to Hick’s comments on my approach to the problem of religious diversity in Perceiving God. Before unearthing the bones I have to pick with him, let me fully acknowledge that I have not provided a fully satisfactory solution to the problem. At most I have done the best that can be done given the constraints within which I was working. But this best, if such it be, is not as bad as Hick makes it appear. To show this I need to make several corrections in Hick’s depiction of the situation.
2. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
George I. Mavrodes A Response to John Hick
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Hick professes now to be a “poly-something” and a “mono-something.” Most of my response is directed to these claims. I suggest that (contrary to my earlier assumption) Hick does not take any of the gods of the actual religions to be real. They are much more like fictional characters than like Kantian phenomena. He is “poly” about these insubstantia.I argue that Hick is not “mono” about anything at all of religious significance. In particular, he is not a mono-Realist.I conclude by arguing that Hick has no satisfactory support for the sort of ineffability which he attributes to the Real.
3. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Alvin Plantinga Ad Hick
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4. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Peter van Inwagen A Reply to Professor Hick
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5. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Kelly James Clark Perils of Pluralism
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Two pressures toward religious pluralism are the variety of religious traditions which seem equally successful in the transformation of human lives and that apparently sincere and equally capable truth-seekers reach divergent conclusions about the nature of ultimate reality. I discuss Hick’s Kantian explanation of these phenomena. I argue that his account is: neither the only nor the best account; furthermore that more reasonable accounts allow for the members of competing traditions to affirm the truth of their religious beliefs; and if Hick’s explanation were accepted it would undermine the salvific power of the respective religious traditions.
6. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Adriaan Theodoor Peperzak Philosophia
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Since the modern faith in Reason has died, the way is reopened for a thorough discussion of the relations between philosophy and theology. Being metaphilosophical as well as meta theological, such a discussion presupposes solid acquaintance with the concrete praxis of philosophy and theology as existentially rooted enterprises developed in the history of particular cultures and individual persons. This article defends the thesis that philosophy in the modern sense of the word never has been and cannot be autarkic because it cannot demonstrate the truth of the faith from which it draws its basic stance and orientation. If this faith is the faith of a Christian, it is impossible to draw a sharp distinction between the philosophical and the theological activities of such a philosopher. The stubborn attempt to restrict one’s thought to autonomous philosophy wounds and paralyzes the thinking of Christians and destroys most of its relevance. The old synthetic conception of philosophia, upheld by Plato and the Stoics no less than by the Fathers of the Church, deserves a reevaluation. Despite the profound differences between unscientific premodernity and modern scientificity, that old conception is a more adequate description of the philosophical practice performed in real human lives.
7. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Dale Eric Brant On Plantinga’s Way Out
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The foreknowledge problem involves two assumptions. First, that “God once believed that an event would occur now” is about the past. Second that it is equivalent to “God once existed and the event is occurring now.” These, Plantinga argues, are incompatible. But he (implicitly) makes assumptions. First, that equivalent propositions are both about a given time, or neither are. Second, that if a proposition is (is not) about a given time, so is (neither is) its negation. Third, that if two propositions are (are not) about a given time, so is (neither is) their conjunction. These, though plausible, are incompatible.
8. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Nicholas Everitt Quasi-Berkeleyan Idealism as Perspicuous Theism
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In this paper, I argue that the kind of idealism defended by Berkeley is a natural and almost unavoidable expression of his theism. Two main arguments are deployed, both starting from a theistic premise and having an idealist conclusion. The first likens the dependence of the physical world on the will of God to the dependence of mental states on a mind. The second likens divine omniscience to the kind of knowledge which it has often been supposed we have of the contents of our own minds. After rebutting objections to these arguments, I conclude that both theists and non-idealists should be surprised and discomforted by my contentions.
9. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Charles T. Hughes Belief, Foreknowledge, and Theological Fatalism
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David Hunt has recently developed a new strategy, called the “dispositional omniscience scenario,” or (OOS), which is designed to defeat theological fatalism by showing the compatibility of divine foreknowledge and human (libertarian) free agency. But I argue that Hunt fails to establish his compatibility claim because (DOS) is based on a defective analysis of dispositional belief that is too weak to sustain any divine foreknowledge of future free actions.
discussion
10. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
William Hasker O’Connor on Gratuitous Natural Evil
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David O’Connor has criticized my arguments for the conclusion that God’s existence is compatible with genuinely gratuitous natural evil. In this reply, I show that his own arguments fail to achieve their objective; in addition, I point out several respects in which he has misstated my position.
notes and news
11. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 3
Notes and News
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articles
12. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
Scott A. Davison Privacy and Control
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In this paper, I explore several privacy issues as they arise with respect to the divine/human relationship. First, in section 1, I discuss the notion of privacy in a general way. Section 2 is devoted to the claim that privacy involves control over information about oneself. In section 3, I summarize the arguments offered recently by Margaret Falls-Corbitt and F. Michael McLain for the conclusion that God respects the privacy of human persons by refraining from knowing certain things about them. Finally, in section 4, I shall criticize Falls-Corbitt and McLain’s arguments and make some concluding remarks about God and privacy.
13. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
Chris Eberle God’s Nature and the Rationality of Religious Belief
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If something like Reformed Epistemology is correct, an agent is innocent in regarding certain ways of forming beliefs to be reliable until those ways have been proven guilty. An important species of argument purporting to show guilt (1) identifies the ways of forming beliefs at the core of our cognitive activity, (2) isolates the features of our core practices which account for their reliability, and (3) determines whether or not peripheral practices which ought to have those features enjoy at least their functional equivalents. An example. Sense perception is at the heart of our cognitive activity; a feature of sense-perception which provides us with confidence in its reliability is that we can subject sense-perceptual beliefs to intersubjective criticism - others can check our beliefs. Beliefs about God formed on the basis of religious experience cannot be so checked and therefore lack positive epistemic status.An important response to such criticism consists of arguing that the difference between two ways of forming beliefs is just what we should expect given some relevant difference between the subject matters of those two ways of forming beliefs. This species of response employs what I call ‘the Ontological Principle,’ viz., that the nature or characteristics of an object constrain the way an agent ought to form beliefs about that object.In this paper, I attempt to provide a rationale for the Ontological Principle. I argue as follows. Any epistemic norm which requires of an agent that she enter into causal relations with an object which she cannot in the ‘nature’ of the case enter lacks epistemic merit - it violates the ought implies can dictum. Because the epistemic norms properly governing the cognitive activity of a given agent are constrained by the causal relations possible between an agent and an object of belief, and because the causal relations possible between an object of belief and an agent are determined in part by the characteristics of the object of belief, the epistemic norms properly governing the cognitive activity of a given agent are determined in part by the characteristics of the object of belief. That is, the Ontological Principle is true.
14. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
Evan Fales Divine Intervention
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Some philosophers deny that science can investigate the supernatural - specifically, the nature and actions of God. If a divine being is atemporal, then, indeed, this seems plausible - but only, I shall argue, because such a being could not causally interact with anything. Here I discuss in detail two major attempts, those of Stump and Kretzmann, and of Leftow, to make sense of theophysical causation on the supposition that God is eternal. These views are carefully worked out, and their failures are instructive for any attempt to reconcileeternality with causal efficacy. I conclude by arguing that if knowledge of God is possible, in virtue of His effects upon the world, then it is science that must play the preeminent role in producing that knowledge.
15. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
Stewart Goetz Libertarian Choice
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In this paper, I develop a noncausal view of agency. I defend the thesis that choices are uncaused mental actions and maintain, contrary to causal theorists of action, that choices differ intrinsically or inherently from nonactions. I explain how they do by placing them in an ontology favored by causal agency theorists (agent-causationists). This ontology is one of powers and liabilities.After explicating how a choice is an uncaused event, I explain how an adequate account of freedom involves the concept of choosing for a reason. Choosing for a reason is a teleological notion, and I set forth what is involved in making a choice for a purpose.
16. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
Donald Wayne Viney Jules Lequyer and the Openness of God
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Until recently the most prominent defender of the openness of God was Charles Hartshorne. Evangelical thinkers are now defending similar ideas while being careful to distance themselves from the less orthodox dimensions of process theology. An overlooked figure in the debate is Jules Lequyer. Although process thinkers have praised Lequyer as anticipating their views, he may be closer in spirit to the evangelicals because of the foundational nature of his Catholicism. Lequyer’s passionate defense of freedom conceived as a creative act as well as the theological implications he drew from this are examined for their relevance to the present discussion of the openness of God.
17. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
William Lane Craig In Defense of the Kalam Cosmological Argument
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Graham Oppy’s attempt to show that the critiques of the kalam cosmological argument offered by Griinbaum, Davies, and Hawking are successful is predicated upon a misunderstanding of the nature of defeaters in rational belief. Neither Grunbaum nor Oppy succeed in showing an incoherence in the Christian doctrine of creation. Oppy’s attempts to rehabilitate Davies’s critique founders on spurious counter-examples and unsubstantiated claims. Oppy’s defense of Hawking’s critique fails to allay suspicions about the reality of imaginary time and finally results in the denial of tense and temporal becoming.
book reviews
18. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
Edward Wierenga The Openness of God
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19. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
James G. Hanink The Sources of Christian Ethics
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20. Faith and Philosophy: Volume > 14 > Issue: 2
William P. Alston Faith and Criticism
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