Asian Philosophy 5 (1):3 – 22 (1995)
Abstract There is one assumption that is shared by practically all popular religious and philosophic systems, ancient and modern, Eastern and Western. In truth it may well be that it is this single assumption which makes such ?systems? possible. That shared assumption is the belief in a ?just universe?, i.e. ?just? in the sense of morally ordered, morally predictable and morally explainable. This assumption rests, as most assumptions must, on pragmatic grounds; that is to say, the assumption is retained or used because it gets the users where they want to go, i.e. the assumption works. But if it could be shown that this assumption, aside from being useful, leads to insuperable logical or empirical problems, then this might be prima facie grounds for rejecting the assumption. Part I examines the historical roots of the assumption of a just universe. Part II, examines three implications that would seem to follow from the assumption that the universe, the world, is a just place in which to live. Part III explores the unacceptable consequences that are found in and that follow from these three implications and that necessitate the rejection of the assumption of the just universe of Part I
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