Philosophia Christi 12 (1):118-141 (2010)

Authors
Stephen Dilley
St. Edward's University
Abstract
This essay argues that philosophical naturalists who draw epistemic support from science for their worldview ought to set aside methodological naturalism in certain historical sciences. When linked to methodological naturalism, philosophical naturalism opens itself to several problems. Specifically, when joined with methodological naturalism, philosophical naturalism can 'never' be scientifically disconfirmed but will nearly 'always' be confirmed, no matter what the empirical evidence. Theistic-friendly "God hypotheses," on the other hand, can 'never' be scientifically confirmed -- again, no matter what the evidence -- but are routinely said to be disconfirmed. Methodological naturalism not only leads to this self-serving dynamic, but does not appear to serve a meaningful epistemic purpose in the contest between philosophical naturalism and theism and so, for these reasons, ought to be set aside
Keywords Contemporary Philosophy  Philosophy and Religion
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DOI 10.5840/pc20101218
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Methodological naturalism in the sciences.Sandy C. Boucher - 2020 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 88 (1):57-80.
The Evolution of Methodological Naturalism in the Origin of Species.Stephen Dilley - 2013 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 3 (1):20-58.

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