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International Philosophical Quarterly

Volume 57, Issue 2, June 2017

Mark K. Spencer
Pages 123-139
DOI: 10.5840/ipq201731682

The Flexibility of Divine Simplicity
Aquinas, Scotus, Palamas

Contrary to many interpreters, I argue that Thomas Aquinas’s account of divine simplicity is compatible with the accounts of divine simplicity given by John Duns Scotus and Gregory Palamas. I synthesize their accounts of divine simplicity in a way that can answer the standard objections to the doctrine of divine simplicity more effectively than any of their individual accounts can. The three objections that I consider here are these: the doctrine of divine simplicity is inconsistent with distinguishing divine attributes, with the doctrine of the Trinity, and with the doctrine of divine freedom.