The Coherence of Theism

Second Edition

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0198779690

Category:

Page: 320

View: 3322

The Coherence of Theism investigates what it means, and whether it is coherent, to say that there is a God. Richard Swinburne concludes that despite philosophical objections, most traditional claims about God are coherent (that is, do not involve contradictions); and although some of the most important claims are coherent only if the words by which they are expressed are being used in analogical senses, this is the way in which theologians have usually claimed that they are being used. When the first edition of this book was published in 1977, it was the first book in the new 'analytic' tradition of philosophy of religion to discuss these issues. Since that time there have been very many books and discussions devoted to them, and this new, substantially rewritten, second edition takes account of these discussions and of new developments in philosophy generally over the past 40 years. These discussions have concerned how to analyse the claim that God is 'omnipotent', whether God can foreknow human free actions, whether God is everlasting or timeless, and what it is for God to be a 'necessary being'. On all these issues this new edition has new things to say.
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The Nature of Necessity

Author: Alvin Plantinga

Publisher: Clarendon Press

ISBN: 0191037176

Category: Philosophy

Page: 266

View: 8337

This is a reissue of a book which is an exploration and defence of the notion of modality 'de re', the idea that objects have both essential and accidental properties. It is one of the first full-length studies of the modalities to emerge from the debate to which Saul Kripke, David Lewis, Ruth Marcus and others have contributed. The argument is developed by means of the notion of possible worlds, and ranges over key problems including the nature of essence, trans-world identity, negative existential propositions, and the existence of unactual objects in other possible worlds. In the final chapters Professor Plantinga applies his logical theories to the clarification of two problems in the philosophy of religion - the Problem of Evil and the Ontological Argument.
Posted in Philosophy

The Scientific Image

Author: Bas C. Van Fraassen

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 9780198244271

Category: Science

Page: 235

View: 5851

The aim of The Scientific Image is to develop an empiricist alternative to both logical positivism and scientific realism. Against positivism, the author insists on a literal interpretation of the language of science, and on an irreducibly pragmatic dimension of theory acceptance. Against realism he argues that the central aim of science is empirical adequacy, and that the only belief involved in the acceptance of a scientific theory is belief that the theory fits the observable phenomena. To substatiate this, the book presents three mutually supporting theories concerning science. The first is an account of the relation between a scientific theory and the empirical world. The second is a new theory of explanation and why-questions, according to which the explanatory power of a theory is a pragmatic aspect which goes beyond its empirical import, but which provides no additional reasons for believing it. And the third is an interpretation of probability in physical theory, with reference to both classical and quantum physics. The presentation of these three central theses is preceded by two chapters which provide an informal introduction to current debates in the philosophy of science, particularly concerning scientific realism.
Posted in Science

Providence and the Problem of Evil

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191606855

Category: Philosophy

Page: 278

View: 6982

Why does a loving God allow humans to suffer so much? This is one of the most difficult problems of religious belief. Richard Swinburne gives a careful, clear examination of this problem, and offers an answer: it is because God wants more for us than just pleasure or freedom from suffering. Swinburne argues that God wants humans to learn and to love, to make the choices which make great differences for good and evil to each other, to form our characters in the way we choose; above all to be of great use to each other. If we are to have all this, there will inevitably be suffering for the short period of our lives on Earth. But because of the good that God gives to humans in this life, and because he makes it possible for us, through our choice, to share the life of Heaven, he does not wrong us if he allows suffering. Providence and the Problem of Evil is the final volume of Richard Swinburne's acclaimed tetralogy on Christian doctrine. It may be read on its own as a self-standing treatment of this eternal philosophical issue. Readers who are interested in a unified study of the philosophical foundations of Christian belief will find it now in the tetralogy and in his trilogy on the philosophy of theism.
Posted in Philosophy

Responsibility and Atonement

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 0198248490

Category: Religion

Page: 213

View: 6269

First volume of a tetralogy on the philosophy of Christian doctrine; second volume is Revelation, from metaphor to analogy.
Posted in Religion

Knowledge of God

Author: Alvin Plantinga,Michael Tooley

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1444301314

Category: Philosophy

Page: 280

View: 5954

Is belief in God epistemically justified? That's the question at the heart of this volume in the Great Debates in Philosophy series, with Alvin Plantinga and Michael Tooley each addressing this fundamental question with distinctive arguments from opposing perspectives. The first half of the book contains each philosopher's explanation of his particular view; the second half allows them to directly respond to each other's arguments, in a lively and engaging conversation Offers the reader a one of a kind, interactive discussion Forms part of the acclaimed Great Debates in Philosophy series
Posted in Philosophy

Mind, Brain, and Free Will

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199662576

Category: Philosophy

Page: 242

View: 2295

Richard Swinburne presents a powerful new case for substance dualism and for libertarian free will. He argues that pure mental events (including conscious events) are distinct from physical events and interact with them, and claims that no result from neuroscience or any other science could show that interaction does not take place. Swinburne goes on to argue for agent causation, and claims that it is we, and not our intentions, that cause our brain events. It ismetaphysically possible that each of us could acquire a new brain or continue to exist without a brain; and so we are essentially souls. Brain events and conscious events are so different from each other that it would not be possible to establish a scientific theory which would predict what each ofus would do in situations of moral conflict. Hence, we should believe that things are as they seem to be: that we make choices independently of the causes which influence us. It follows that we are morally responsible for our actions.
Posted in Philosophy

Divine Foreknowledge and Human Freedom

The Coherence of Theism : Omniscience

Author: William Lane Craig

Publisher: BRILL

ISBN: 9789004092501

Category: Religion

Page: 360

View: 8710

The ancient problem of fatalism, more particularly theological fatalism, has resurfaced with surprising vigour in the second half of the twentieth century. Two questions predominate in the debate: (1) Is divine foreknowledge compatible with human freedom and (2) How can God foreknow future free acts? Having surveyed the historical background of this debate in "The Problem of Divine Foreknowledge" and "Future Contingents from Aristotle to Suarez" (Brill: 1988), William Lane Craig now attempts to address these issues critically. His wide-ranging discussion brings together a thought- provoking array of related topics such as logical fatalism, multivalent logic, backward causation, precognition, time travel, counterfactual logic, temporal necessity, Newcomb's Problem, middle knowledge, and relativity theory. The present work serves both as a useful survey of the extensive literature on theological fatalism and related fields and as a stimulating assessment of the possibility of divine foreknowledge of future free acts.
Posted in Religion

The Existence of God

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 0199271674

Category: Philosophy

Page: 363

View: 4682

Substantially re-written and updated, this edition of 'The Existence of God' presents arguments such as the existence of the laws of nature, 'fine-tuning' of the universe, moral awareness and evidence of miracles, to prove the case that there is a God.
Posted in Philosophy

God and Other Minds

A Study of the Rational Justification of Belief in God

Author: Alvin Plantinga

Publisher: Cornell University Press

ISBN: 9780801497353

Category: Religion

Page: 277

View: 9637

Posted in Religion

Theism and Explanation

Author: Gregory W. Dawes

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135841349

Category: Philosophy

Page: 222

View: 8727

In this timely study, Dawes defends the methodological naturalism of the sciences. Though religions offer what appear to be explanations of various facts about the world, the scientist, as scientist, will not take such proposed explanations seriously. Even if no natural explanation were available, she will assume that one exists. Is this merely a sign of atheistic prejudice, as some critics suggest? Or are there good reasons to exclude from science explanations that invoke a supernatural agent? On the one hand, Dawes concedes the bare possibility that talk of divine action could constitute a potential explanation of some state of affairs, while noting that the conditions under which this would be true are unlikely ever to be fulfilled. On the other hand, he argues that a proposed explanation of this kind would rate poorly, when measured against our usual standards of explanatory virtue.
Posted in Philosophy

The Wonder of the Cross

The God Who Uses Evil and Suffering to Destroy Evil and Suffering

Author: Richard A. Shenk

Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers

ISBN: 1498276768

Category: Religion

Page: 344

View: 7129

When considering and confronting the problem of evil, we may be asking the wrong question: Why is there evil in the world if God is good and powerful? It may be wrong because it smuggles in an unbiblical premise: God can and should use his coercive power to relieve suffering since he is both good and able. But what if coercive power does not work to accomplish God's goals? This book is an investigation into the possibility that the noncoercive power of the Cross must be at the center of this issue, and that the Cross could reform this question. We could ask, instead, How is God destroying evil and suffering--and why is he taking so long? The answer to this reframed question might be: He is using evil and suffering to destroy evil and suffering for His People; this is how long it takes. While not a "solution" to the problem of evil, could this help us learn to delight in God in a world in which evil and suffering seem at times so relentless?
Posted in Religion

Faith Has Its Reasons

Integrative Approaches to Defending the Christian Faith

Author: Kenneth Boa,Robert M. Bowman Jr.

Publisher: InterVarsity Press

ISBN: 0830858911

Category: Religion

Page: 658

View: 6119

Ever since the apostle Paul addressed the Stoic and Epicurean philosophers in Athens, relating the Christian worldview to a non-Christian world has been a challenge. And despite Peter's charge to be ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you (1 Peter 3:15), most Christian laypeople have left apologetics—the defense of the faith—to the ecclesiastical pros. Faith Has Its Reasons is a study of four different models of how apologetics should be done, an assessment of their strengths and weaknesses, and a proposal for integrating the best insights of each. Kenneth Boa and Robert Bowman have assembled a wealth of information about what Christians believe and how to present that faith to an unbelieving world. Remarkable both in its depth of content and ease of accessibility, Faith Has Its Reasons gives Christian laypeople the tools to address such critical questions as: Why is belief in God rational despite the prevalence of evil in the world? What facts support the church's testimony that Jesus rose from the dead? Can we be certain Christianity is true? How can our faith in Christ be based on something more secure than our own understanding without descending into an irrational emotionalism?
Posted in Religion

Faith and Reason

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 0199283923

Category: Philosophy

Page: 278

View: 6398

Richard Swinburne presents a new edition of the final volume of his acclaimed trilogy on philosophical theology. Faith and Reason is a self-standing examination of the implications for religious faith of Swinburne's famous arguments about the coherence of theism and the existence of God. By practising a particular religion, a person seeks to achieve some or all of three goals - that he worships and obeys God, gains salvation for himself, and helps others to attain their salvation. But not all religions commend worship, and different religions have different conceptions of salvation. Faced with these differences, Richard Swinburne argues that we should practice that religion which has the best goals and is more probably true than the creeds of other religions. He proposes criteria by which to determine the probabilities of different religious creeds, and he argues that, while requiring total commitment, faith does not demand fully convinced belief. While maintaining the samestructure and conclusions as the original classic, this second edition has been substantially rewritten, both in order to relate its ideas more closely to those of classical theologians and philosophers and to respond to more recent views. In particular he discusses, and ultimately rejects, the view of Alvin Plantinga that the 'warrant' of a belief depends on the process which produced it, and John Hick's contention that all religions offer valid paths to salvation.
Posted in Philosophy

The Resurrection of God Incarnate

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 0199257450

Category: Philosophy

Page: 224

View: 5672

Whether or not Jesus rose bodily from the dead is perhaps the most critical and contentious issue in the study of Christianity. Until now, scholars have concentrated on explicit statements in the New Testament to support their views, but Richard Swinburne argues for a wider approach, asking instead whether the character of God and the life of Jesus support the probability of the Resurrection. His book will be of great interest not only to academics but to anyone with an interest in religious philosophy and doctrine.
Posted in Philosophy

Relationality and the Concept of God

Author: Henry Jansen

Publisher: Rodopi

ISBN: 9789051838121

Category: Philosophy

Page: 257

View: 2827

Classical theism, the dominant tradition in Christian theology, has stressed the metaphysical concept of God, i.e., God's ontological transcendence and independence from the world. In this century, however, this concept of God has increasingly met with criticism. On the basis of the Bible and new philosophical considerations, it is argued that a relational concept of God better answers the fundamental concerns of the Christian faith. In this book the author investigates the questions of whether one can conceive of God apart from the metaphysical attributes and whether reflection on the biblical depiction of God leads necessarily to a relational concept of God. The author explores the questions by examining the relational concepts of God found in two contemporary German theologians, Jürgen Moltmann and Wolfhart Pannenberg, and uses the divine attribute of immutability as a focus for the discussion. He argues that the relational concept of God presupposes another metaphysical conception of God, which raises problems as serious as those in classical theism, and that the Bible itself, because of its nature as a narrative text, is ambiguous in many respects as far as God is concerned. A truly Christian doctrine of God must take both the metaphysical and relational aspects of God into account.
Posted in Philosophy

Disabled Church - Disabled Society

The Implications of Autism for Philosophy, Theology and Politics

Author: John Gillibrand

Publisher: Jessica Kingsley Publishers

ISBN: 9780857003614

Category: Psychology

Page: 208

View: 8598

In this moving and intelligent book John Gillibrand, an Anglican priest, draws on his experience of caring for his non-verbal son, Adam, who has autism and is now a teenager. He reflects on how the experience has changed not just his life, but also his whole way of thinking about theology, politics and philosophy. Illuminated by an account of his day to day experiences with Adam, and deeper reflection upon the meaning of that experience, John Gillibrand considers the challenges that autism - and disability in general - present to the western tradition of thought in theology and philosophy. His experiences lead him to consider the place of people with autism in relation to religion and philosophy, and how the difficulties in providing adequate public services for those with autism and their carers point to a need for radical transformation of western political structures. This thoughtful and incisive book will be of interest to theologians, philosophers and sociologists, as well as to all those trying to integrate people with autism into society. Parents and carers will find much to reflect on. Shortlisted for the Michael Ramsey Prize for theological writing 2013.
Posted in Psychology

Epistemic Justification

Author: Richard Swinburne

Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand

ISBN: 9780199243785

Category: Philosophy

Page: 262

View: 1438

Richard Swinburne offers an original treatment of a question at the heart of epistemology: what makes a belief a rational one, or one which the believer is justified in holding? He maps the various totally different and purportedly rival accounts that philosophers give of epistemic justification ('internalist' and 'externalist'), and argues that they are really accounts of different concepts. He distinguishes (as most epistemologists do not) between synchronic justification (justificationat a time) and diachronic justification (synchronic justification resulting from adequate investigation) - both internalist and externalist. He argus that most kinds of justification are worth having because (for different reasons) indicative of truth. However, it is only justification of intermalist kinds that can guide a believer's actions. Swinburne goes on to show the usefulness of the probability calculus in elucidating how empirical evidence makes beliefs probably true: every proposition has an intrinsic probability (an a priori probability independent of empirical evidence) which may be increased or decreased by empirical evidence. This innovative and challenging book will refresh epistemology and rewrite its agenda.
Posted in Philosophy

God, Freedom, and Evil

Author: Alvin Plantinga

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 9780802817310

Category: Religion

Page: 112

View: 6977

In his discussion of natural theology (arguments to prove the existence of God) and natural atheology (arguments for the falsehood of theistic belief) Plantinga focuses on two of the traditional arguments: the ontological argument as an example of natural theology, and the problem of evil as the most important representative of natural atheology. Accessible to serious general readers.
Posted in Religion