Philosophy 6 (23):295 - 306 (1931)

Abstract
The phrase “Cosmic Purpose” and others akin to it are familiar enough, particularly in the literature of edification. It is the aim of this article to examine the idea the words convey rather more closely than we do in our common use of them; to deflate the expression, so to speak, of those gaseous suggestions of “uplift” which too often hang about it. The question involved is, of course, in what sense, if in any, purpose may be attributed to the Cosmos, to the universe in its totality. And we have to ask, in case the term so used should turn out to be really misused, Is it a sheer error that dissolves away under criticism, or is there some valid core of meaning which may be restated in other terms? If these are well-worn questions, yet the problem is too fundamental for them ever to be altogether trite
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DOI 10.1017/S0031819100032186
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