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Faith and Philosophy

Volume 38, Issue 2, April 2021

Brian Leftow
Pages 262-273

Perfect Being Attacked! Jeff Speaks’s The Greatest Possible Being

Jeff Speaks’s The Greatest Possible Being criticizes several sorts of perfect being theology. I show that his main discussions target what are really idealizations of actual perfect-being projects. I then focus on whether Speaks’s idealizations match up with the real historical article. I argue that, in one key respect, they do not and that it would be uncharitable to think that one of them does. If the idealizations do not represent what perfect being thinkers have actually been doing, a question arises about how much Speaks’s critique should worry those pursuing projects modelled on real historical perfect being theology.