Life, death, and the hiddenness of God

Many philosophers have contended that (traditional) theism or supernaturalism suffers from what can properly be called the Problem of Divine Hiddenness (the PDH ). [See Howard-Snyder and Moser 2002]. Moreover, it is the contention of many proponents of the PDH that this “problem,” if, indeed, not just a component of the “problem of evil,” bears a striking similarity to the latter. Specifically, at the heart of this ostensible difficulty for theism is that Divine “Hiddenness,” like pain and suffering—or at least pain and suffering in the amount that the world contains—is precisely the opposite of what one would expect if there existed a (maximally great) supernatural Person. Accordingly, it is maintained by proponents of the PDH that supernaturalism is disconfirmed by the relevant “problem.” The aim of this essay is to establish that there is more than ample metaphysical warrant (of a sort overlooked thus far) for maintaining that the “hiddenness” of God is exactly what should be expected if theism is true. Thus, the conclusion we hope to secure is that the PDH has considerably less to recommend it than its proponents have thought, and, accordingly, that it fails to constitute an effective threat to supernaturalism.
Keywords God  Hiddenness  Life  Death  Omnipresence  Radiance  Survival
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Travis Dumsday (2012). Divine Hiddenness and Creaturely Resentment. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 72 (1):41-51.
Travis Dumsday (2014). Divine Hiddenness and the Opiate of the People. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 76 (2):193-207.
Travis Dumsday (2016). Divine Hiddenness and the One Sheep. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 79 (1):69-86.

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