Arguments for Theism, Misc

Edited by Daniel von Wachter (International Academy of Philosophy In The Principality of Liechtenstein)
About this topic
Summary Theism is generally taken to be the view that there is a person who is bodiless, omnipotent, omniscient, eternal, perfectly good, perfectly free, and who is the creator and sustainer of the universe. There are of course  different ways to spell out these attributes, for example some spell out ‘eternal‘ as ‘being outside of time‘, others as ‘everlasting‘. However, those who present arguments for or against the ‘existence of God‘ use the term ‘God’ similarly enough to be discussing the same question. Philosophers rather say that there is no God than using ‘God’ in a very different sense, for example in the sense of something other than a person. This category contains arguments for the existence of God that do not fit into any of the sibling leaf categories.
Key works The most thorough defense of the existence of God is Swinburne 2004, who gives probabilistic, inductive instead of deductive arguments and who rejects the ontological as well as the moral argument from the existence of values or duties. Plantinga 1974 defends the ontological argument, Adams 1979 the moral argument. MacKie 1982 is still a much quoted defense of atheism. Rowe 2010 presents an atheistic position.
Introductions Most anthologies with the title ‘philosophy of religion’ contain articles that give the various arguments, for example Craig 2001 or Davies 2000, and also Meister & Copan 2007, Taliaferro & Meister 2009, and Copan & Moser 2003. A simplified defense of theism with various arguments is Swinburne 1996, Le Poidevin 1996 is an introductory defense atheism.
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300 found
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  1. Kant's Pre-Critical Proof for God's Existence.Steven M. Duncan - manuscript
    In his Beweisgrund (1762), Kant presents a sketch of "the only possible basis" for a proof of God's existence. In this essay, I attempt to present that proof as a valid and sound argument for the existence of God.
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  2. Fundamentals of Philosophy - an Introduction.Jude Arnout Durieux - manuscript
    A very basic introduction meant for Chinese lay people, who only have a background in the official historic-materialist worldview. -/- A version in Chinese is available as 基础哲学 ― 概论, philpapers rec DUR-4.
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  3. 基础哲学 ― 概论.Jude Arnout Durieux - manuscript
    本文供中华人民共和国内使用,其中某些主题不能完全直接解释或解决。 -/- The English version is available as "Fundamentals of Philosophy - an introduction", philpapers rec DURFOP-2.
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  4. Two Dozen Compossibles.Jude Arnout Durieux - manuscript
    We present a simple model to show the compossibility of middle knowledge, grounded truth, libertarian free will, predestination, evil, hell, a sin-free heaven, God being perfectly just, free, praiseworthy, and necessarily omnibenevolent, omniscient, and omnipotent, this world being both replete with injustice and the best of all possible worlds, heinous suffering, no-one unjustly suffering, God’s grace for the godly, the prospering of the godless, original sin, human responsibility, transworld depravity, irresistible grace, and Arminian human choice. The model is not intended (...)
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  5. If Naturalism is True, Then Scientific Explanation is Impossible.Tomas Bogardus - forthcoming - Religious Studies:1-24.
    I begin by retracing an argument from Aristotle for final causes in science. Then, I advance this ancient thought, and defend an argument for a stronger conclusion: that no scientific explanation can succeed, if Naturalism is true. The argument goes like this: (1) Any scientific explanation can be successful only if it crucially involves a natural regularity. Next, I argue that (2) any explanation can be successful only if it crucially involves no element that calls out for explanation but lacks (...)
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  6. Why God is Probably Good: A Response to the Evil-God Challenge.Calum Miller - forthcoming - Religious Studies:1-18.
    A number of philosophers have recently defended the evil-god challenge, which is to explain relevant asymmetries between believing in a perfectly good God and believing in a perfectly evil god, such that the former is more reasonable than the latter. In this article, I offer a number of such reasons. I first suggest that certain conceptions of the ontology of good and evil can offer asymmetries which make theism a simpler hypothesis than ‘maltheism’. I then argue that maltheism is itself (...)
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  7. Atheistic Induction by Boltzmann Brains.Bradley Monton - forthcoming - In Jerry Walls & Trent Dougherty (eds.), Two Dozen (or so) Arguments for God: The Plantinga Project. Oxford University Press.
    I present a new thermodynamic argument for the existence of God. Naturalistic physics provides evidence for the failure of induction, because it provides evidence that the past is not at all what you think it is, and your existence is just a momentary fluctuation. The fact that you are not a momentary fluctuation thus provides evidence for the existence of God – God would ensure that the past is roughly what we think it is, and you have been in existence (...)
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  8. Framing Christian Eschatology Through Natural Teleology? Theological Possibilities and Concerns.Mikael Leidenhag - 2022 - Heythrop Journal 63 (3):401-413.
    The Heythrop Journal, Volume 63, Issue 3, Page 401-413, May 2022.
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  9. Making Sense of Nonsense: Navigating Through the West's Current Quagmire.Scott D. G. Ventureyra (ed.) - 2022 - Ottawa, ON, Canada: True Freedom Press.
    In recent years, there has been a concerted attack on many of the precepts of Western civilization relating to the concept of God, truth, Christianity, morality, sex, the family, and even modern science, especially biology. The concern of this volume is to explore these and other attacks through the tools of philosophy, theology, science, and intuition. It seeks to bring clarity to the ongoing struggle of Western civilization to preserve its values and traditions. -/- The West is crumbling at an (...)
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  10. Erich Przywara’s Theology of Israel: A Critical Response to “Historical Criticism”.John R. Betz - 2021 - Modern Theology 37 (1):62-88.
    In the Anglophone world the Jesuit philosopher and theologian Erich Przywara (1889‐1972) tends to be known almost exclusively to Balthasar and Barth scholars (as an important mentor to the former and a formidable nemesis of the latter). In recent years, however, interest in Przywara has grown beyond these circles, owing in part to the English translation of his magnum opus, Analogia Entis (2014), and a handful of articles and monographs on his thought. Indeed, it is gradually being recognized that Przywara (...)
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  11. Why God Did Not Choose All Souls: New Scriptural Evidence.Jeff Grupp - 2021 - Philosophy and Theology 32 (1):93-117.
    An analysis of Scripture uncovers a new model of God’s election and predestination of souls, which fits under the umbrella of the Calvinist theologies, but where this model involves an answer to the long-standing question of why God chose some, rather than all. It will be explored how before souls were elected (or condemned), God looked at them and knew them in a pre-election state, which God used to predestine each soul in physical reality. This analysis reveals why it could (...)
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  12. Proving God Without Dualism: Improving the Swinburne-Moreland Argument From Consciousness.Ludger Jansen & Ward Blondé - 2021 - Metaphysica 22 (1):75-87.
    With substance dualism and the existence of God, Swinburne and Moreland have argued for a very powerful explanatory mechanism that can readily explain several philosophical problems related to consciousness. However, their positions come with presuppositions and ontological commitments which many are not prepared to share. The aim of this paper is to improve on the Swinburne-Moreland argument from consciousness by developing an argument for the existence of God from consciousness without being committed to substance dualism. The argument proceeds by suggesting (...)
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  13. Christianity & Science in Harmony?Robert W. P. Luk - 2021 - Science and Philosophy 9 (2):61-82.
    A worldview that does not involve religion or science seems to be incomplete. However, a worldview that includes both religion and science may arouse concern of incompatibility. This paper looks at the particular religion, Christianity, and proceeds to develop a worldview in which Christianity and Science are compatible with each other. The worldview may make use of some ideas of Christianity and may involve some author’s own ideas on Christianity. It is thought that Christianity and Science are in harmony in (...)
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  14. The Argument From Common Consent.Jonathan Matheson - 2021 - In Colin Ruloff (ed.), Contemporary Arguments in Natural Theology. Bloomsbury.
    In this paper, I will explain and motivate the common consent argument for theism. According to the common consent argument it is rational for you to believe that God exists because you know so many other people believe that God exists. Having motivated the argument, I will explain and motivate several pressing objections to the argument and evaluate their probative force. The paper will serve as both an accessible introduction to this argument as well as a resource for continued research (...)
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  15. Faith and Philosophy: Richard Swinburne and the Analytic Philosophy of Religion – An Interview.Damiano Migliorini - 2021 - Philosophical Investigations 44 (4):345-371.
    Richard Swinburne is one of the best-known names in the international philosophical scene. His apologetic project is considered one of the largest and most impactful and profound of the last century. The interview conducted here explores many biographical and theoretical issues (Omniscience, Eternity, God’s existence, Free will, Analogy, Relational ontology and Powers ontology, Soul-Body relation, Trinity, Evil) and it aims to trace a broad (albeit necessarily partial) path through his numerous works. The interview took place in 2016, in Oxford, at (...)
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  16. Work and Its Discontents: On Contemporary Theology’s Response to the Question of Work.Zachary T. Settle - 2021 - Modern Theology 37 (1):165-190.
    I begin this essay by articulating capitalism’s problematic work ethic, to which a host of contemporary theologians are rightfully responding. I then establish a pattern that structures a host of those contemporary theological responses. Theologians working out of the “God as Worker” model aim to address work‐related problems by calling for workers to imitate God’s work. Making use of Augustine’s doctrine of transcendence, I problematize that mode of response on two fronts: (1) those proposals are based on too quick an (...)
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  17. Grounding and the Existence of God.Joshua Sijuwade - 2021 - Metaphysica.
    In this article, I seek to assess the extent to which Theism, the claim that there is a God, can provide a true fundamental explanation for the instantiation of the grounding relation that connects the various entities within the layered structure of reality. More precisely, I seek to utilise the explanatory framework of Richard Swinburne within a specific metaphysical context, a ground-theoretic context, which will enable me to develop a true fundamental explanation for the existence of grounding. And thus, given (...)
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  18. Magical Thinking.Andrew M. Bailey - 2020 - Faith and Philosophy 37 (2):181-201.
    According to theists, God is an immaterial thinking being. The main question of this article is whether theism supports the view that we are immaterial thinking beings too. I shall argue in the negative. Along the way, I will also explore some implications in the philosophy of mind following from the observation that, on theism, God’s mentality is in a certain respect magical.
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  19. The Void of God, or The Paradox of the Pious Atheism: From Scholem to Derrida.Agata Bielik-Robson - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 12 (2):109-132.
    My essay will take as its point of departure the paragraph from Gershom Scholem’s “Reflections on Jewish Theology,” in which he depicts the modern religious experience as the one of the "void of God" or as "pious atheism". I will first argue that the "void of God" cannot be reduced to atheistic non-belief in the presence of God. Then, I will demonstrate the further development of the Scholemian notion of the ‘pious atheism’ in Derrida, especially in his Lurianic treatment of (...)
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  20. Reason and Faith: Themes From Richard Swinburne: Michael Bergmann and Jeffrey E. Brower (Eds.): Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016, 256 Pp, $72. [REVIEW]Isaac Choi - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 87 (2):193-197.
  21. Christ the Tragedy of God: A Theological Exploration of Tragedy. By Kevin Taylor. Pp. X, 155, London: Routledge, 2019, $113.50. [REVIEW]Paul Raimond Daniels - 2020 - Heythrop Journal 61 (4):717-718.
  22. Divine Hiddenness and the Suffering Unbeliever Argument.Roberto Di Ceglie - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 12 (2):211-235.
    In this essay, I propose two arguments from Thomas Aquinas’s reflection on theism and faith to rebut Schellenberg’s claim that divine hiddenness justifies atheism. One of those arguments, however, may be employed so as to re-propose Schellenberg’s conviction, which is crucial to his argument, that there are ‘non-resistant’ or ‘inculpable’ unbelievers. I then advance what I call the suffering unbeliever argument. In short, the unbelievers mentioned by Schellenberg are expected to suffer because of their non-belief, which—as Schellenberg says—prevents them from (...)
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  23. A Profound Ignorance: Modern Pneumatology and Its Anti‐Modern Redemption by EphraimRadner (Waco, TX: Baylor University Press, 2019), Ix + 453 Pp. [REVIEW]Amy J. Erickson - 2020 - Modern Theology 36 (4):919-922.
  24. The Amazing Placenta: Evolution and Lifeline to Humanness.Graeme Finlay - 2020 - Zygon 55 (2):306-326.
  25. His Royal I-Ness.Mark Glouberman - 2020 - Philosophy and Theology 32 (1-2):81-91.
    The theology of the (Hebrew) Bible, as set out in the Torah’s foundational parts, answers the question “What am I?” not the question “Why is there a world?” So the principle that the Bible’s deity, God, represents, the principle of a category of being not recognized in the pagan thinking whose basic elements Greek philosophy systematizes, first enters “In the day that . . . the Lord God formed [the] man,” not “In the beginning when God created the heavens and (...)
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  26. God, existence, and fictional objects: the Case for Meinongian theism: John-Mark L. Miravalle. Bloomsbury Academic, 2018, 186 pp, $102.60.Tyron Goldschmidt - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 88 (1):133-136.
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  27. Does God Intend That Sin Occur? We Affirm.Matthew J. Hart & Daniel J. Hill - 2020 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 12 (1):143-171.
    In this paper we discuss the question whether God intends that sin occur. We clarify the question, consider some of the answers given in the Christian tradition, and give a careful commentary on a few especially telling passages from the Christian Scriptures. We consider two philosophically informed interpretative strategies, one derived from the work of Frances Kamm, the other from Reformed scholasticism, against our interpretation of these passages. While we concede that in other passages such interpretations may allow a way (...)
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  28. Piety Without Metaphysics: The Moral Pedagogy of Hume’s Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion.Joshua P. Hochschild - 2020 - Urbaniana University Journal 73 (3):73-99.
    Urbaniana University Journal 73.3 (2020): 73-99. -/- A close reading of Hume’s Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion reveals that it is not what it appears. Rather than a work of natural theology, meant to show something about arguments concerning the existence and nature of God, the Dialogues turn out to embody a moral pedagogy exemplifying and attempting to instill a conception of piety and religion as virtues. This paper defends this interpretation by reviewing three alternative, but ultimately inadequate, interpretations of the (...)
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  29. Inner Animalities: Theology and the End of the Human. By Eric Daryl Meyer. Pp. 228, NY, Fordham University Press, 2018, $32.00. [REVIEW]Daniel P. Horan - 2020 - Heythrop Journal 61 (2):347-348.
  30. Peace is Everything: An Examination of the Bahá’Í Faith’s Concept of Peace.Hoda Mahmoudi - 2020 - Zeitschrift für Religions- Und Geistesgeschichte 72 (3):242-259.
    This paper describes the central role of peace in the Bahá’í Faith. For Bahá’ís, peace begins at the level of the individual and migrates outward to the community, nation, and the world. The article explains how the Bahá’í Faith outlines a covenant – an agreement between Bahá’ís and between Bahá’ís and the world – made manifest in an Administrative Order in which the ascertainment of peaceful principles and the establishment of peaceful practices are developed. The paper explains how concepts like (...)
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  31. Memory Altering Technologies and the Capacity to Forgive: Westworld and Volf in Dialogue.Michelle A. Marvin - 2020 - Zygon 55 (3):713-732.
    I explore the impact of memory altering technologies in the science fiction drama (2016–2020) in order to show that unreconciled altered traumatic memory may lead to a dystopian breakdown of society. I bring Miroslav Volf's theological perspectives on memory into conversation with the plot of Westworld in order to reveal connections between memory altering technologies and humanity's responsibility to remember rightly. Using Volf's theology of remembering as an interpretive lens, I analyze characters’ inability to remember rightly while recalling partial memories (...)
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  32. Mary and Fátima: A Modest C-Inductive Argument for Catholicism.Tyler Dalton Mcnabb & Joseph E. Blado - 2020 - Perichoresis 18 (5):55-65.
    C-Inductive arguments are arguments that increase the probability of a hypothesis. This can be contrasted with what is called a P-Inductive argument. A P-inductive argument is an argument that shows the overall probability of a hypothesis to be more probable than not. In this paper, we put forth a C-inductive argument for the truth of the Catholic hypothesis (CH). Roughly, we take CH to be the hypothesis that the core creedal beliefs found within the Catholic Tradition are true. Specifically, we (...)
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  33. Transubstantiation: Theology, History, and Christian Unity by BrettSalkeld (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academic, 2019), Xv + 270 Pp. [REVIEW]Joshua Mobley - 2020 - Modern Theology 36 (3):692-695.
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  34. God* Does Not Exist: A Novel Logical Problem of Evil.P. X. Monaghan - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 88 (2):181-195.
    I often tell my students that the only thing that is not controversial in philosophy is that everything else in it is controversial. While this might be a bit of an exaggeration, it does contain a kernel of truth, as many exaggerations do: philosophy is a highly contentious discipline. So it is remarkable the extent to which there is agreement in the philosophy of religion amongst theists, agnostics, and atheists alike that John Mackie’s argument for atheism is either invalid or (...)
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  35. Religious Education and Theology: Separate Sails in the One Breeze.Gerard Moore - 2020 - The Australasian Catholic Record 97 (2):227.
    There is an ongoing tension between the spheres of religious education and of theological studies. It is somewhat evident in the academy, and often enough emerges when the inevitable university restructure places religious education and theology in the same school, or situates religious education within education at a remove from theology, or any range of permutations. The tension is also felt in discussions between clergy, with a theological education behind them, and classroom teachers and religious education coordinators, whose training is (...)
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  36. Richard Kearney’s Anatheistic Wager: Philosophy, Theology, Poetics. Edited by Chris Doude van Troostwijk and Matthew Clemente. Pp. Xi, 264, Bloomington, IN, Indiana University Press, 2018, $65.00. [REVIEW]Paul Niesiobedzki - 2020 - Heythrop Journal 61 (4):708-709.
  37. Andrew Shanks, German Idealism, and the Speculative Redemption of Theodicy.Cyril O’Regan - 2020 - Modern Theology 36 (3):662-671.
  38. Arguing to Theism From Consciousness.Ben Page - 2020 - Faith and Philosophy 37 (3):336-362.
    I provide an argument from consciousness for God’s existence. I first consider a version of the argument which is ultimately difficult to evaluate. I then consider a stronger argument, on which consciousness, given our worldly laws of nature, is rather substantial evidence for God’s existence. It is this latter argument the paper largely focuses on, both in setting it out and defending it from various objections.
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  39. Natural Theology as a Medium of Communication.David Pickering - 2020 - Heythrop Journal 61 (4):660-670.
  40. Zeitschriftenschau.Horst Georg Pöhlmann - 2020 - Neue Zeitschrift für Systematicsche Theologie Und Religionsphilosophie 62 (1):138-148.
  41. Mystagogy and Cyrillian Orthodoxy: Christology as Fidelity to a Carnal Presence.Aaron Riches - 2020 - Modern Theology 36 (3):1-23.
    Henry Chadwick's contention that the “nerve‐center” of Cyril's Christology is the Eucharist reconfigures the urgency of his polemic against Nestorius: it is not a question of abstract doctrine, but of the mystery encountered in the liturgy. This contention has been corroborated by patrologists, but its theological implication has not been fully drawn – viz. that mystagogy is the basis of Cyrillian orthodoxy. When this implication is grasped, it entails that the orthodox doctrine of the “unity of Christ” concerns not merely (...)
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  42. Fereydun Vahman: 175 Years of Persecution. A History of the Babis & Baha’is of Iran, London: Oneworld Publications 2019, 352 S. [REVIEW]Johannes Rosenbaum - 2020 - Zeitschrift für Religions- Und Geistesgeschichte 72 (3):362-365.
  43. Analyzing the Muddles of Analysis: (Some of) What Analytic Theologians Can Learn From the History of Analytic Feminism.Jonathan C. Rutledge - 2020 - Modern Theology 36 (3):569-581.
    Analytic theologians have ironically experienced difficulties in precisely defining the meaning of ‘analytic’ with respect to their style of theology. In this article, I turn to the history of a similar research project, analytic feminism, to see how it went about defining ‘analytic’ in relation to the typically non-analytic subject area of feminist studies. I then consider two commonly referred to attempts to define analytic theology, one methodological and the other socio-historical, and discuss shortcomings of each. I close with a (...)
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  44. I Walk the Line: Comment on Mikael Leidenhag on Theistic Evolution and Intelligent Design.Christoffer Skogholt - 2020 - Zygon 55 (3):685-695.
    Is theistic evolution (TE) a philosophically tenable position? Leidenhag argues in his article “The Blurred Line between Theistic Evolution and Intelligent Design” that it is not, since it, Leidenhag claims, espouses a view of divine action that he labels “natural divine causation” (NDC), which makes God explanatory redundant. That is, in so far as TE does not invoke God as an additional cause alongside natural causes, it is untenable. Theistic evolutionists should therefore “reject NDC and affirm a more robust notion (...)
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  45. 有史以来最深刻的精神自传?- 阿迪达(弗兰克林·琼斯)的《倾听的膝盖》评论(1995年)(2019年修订版) (The most profound spiritual autobiography of all time? - a review of "The Knee of Listening" by Adi Da (Franklin Jones) (1995)).Michael Richard Starks - 2020 - In 欢迎来到地球上的地狱: 婴儿,气候变化,比特币,卡特尔,中国,民主,多样性,养成基因,平等,黑客,人权,伊斯兰教,自由主义,繁荣,网络,混乱。饥饿,疾病,暴力,人工智能,战争. Las Vegas, NV USA: Reality Press. pp. 221-224.
    简要回顾独特的美国神秘阿迪达(弗兰克林·琼斯)的生活和精神自传。一些版本封面上的贴纸上写着"有史以来最深刻的精神自传",这很可能是真的。我70多岁,读过许多由精神导师和灵性的书,这 是最伟大的之一。当然,这是迄今为止我所见过的启蒙过程最全面、最清晰的描述。即使你对人类最迷人的心理过程毫无兴趣,它还是一个惊人的文件,揭示了很多关于宗教、瑜伽和人类心理学的信息,并探讨了人类可能性的深 度和局限性。我详细地描述了它,并将他的教学与当代印度神秘奥修的教导进行比较。 那些希望从现代两个系统的观点来看为人类行为建立一个全面的最新框架的人,可以查阅我的书《路德维希的哲学、心理学、Min d和语言的逻辑结构》维特根斯坦和约翰·西尔的《第二部》(2019年)。那些对我更多的作品感兴趣的人可能会看到《会说话的猴子——一个末日星球上的哲学、心理学、科学、宗教和政治——文章和评论2006-20 19年第3次(2019年)和自杀乌托邦幻想21篇世纪4日 (2019).
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  46. An Avant‐Garde Theological Generation. By Jon Kirwan. Pp. 312, Oxford University Press, 2018, £70.00.John Sullivan - 2020 - Heythrop Journal 61 (4):707-708.
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  47. The ‘Divine Names’ and the ‘Attributes of Deity’: On the (Infinite) Analogical Interval in Forty‐Six Aphorisms.Oliver Tromans - 2020 - Modern Theology 36 (3):629-640.
  48. Die Bahá’Í-Religion.Wahied Wahdat-Hagh - 2020 - Zeitschrift für Religions- Und Geistesgeschichte 72 (3):239-241.
  49. An Examination of the Biblical Evidence for Open Theism.Ferhat Yöney - 2020 - Heythrop Journal 61 (2):253-266.
    Open Theist theologians argue that their view of divine foreknowledge and providence is the correct interpretation of the Bible, and suggest some biblical evidence to support this claim. Among these theologians, Gregory A. Boyd’s case is the most systematic, and also the most comprehensive and rigorous. Taking into consideration (1) the main philosophical claims of Open Theism and its main rivals, namely Calvinism and Molinism, and (2) Open Theist theologians’ interpretative principles for the Bible, the biblical evidence for Open Theism (...)
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  50. Words Into Silence.Grace Mariette Agolia - 2019 - Philosophy and Theology 31 (1):223-249.
    This essay explores Karl Rahner’s use of silence throughout his writings in relation to central themes of his theology. First, in his reflections about encountering the silent mystery of God in prayer, Rahner discovers that this painful silence may indeed be sacramental of God’s abiding nearness, inviting us to greater faith, hope, and love. Second, Rahner engages the transcendental character of this relationship between grace and freedom through the silence that permeates the existential divine-human dialogue. Third, Rahner’s meditations on Jesus, (...)
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