Foundational Grounding and the Argument from Contingency

Abstract
The argument from contingency for the existence of God is best understood as a request for an explanation of the total sequence of causes and effects in the universe (‘History’ for short). Many puzzles about how there could be such an explanation arise from the assumption that God is being introduced as one more cause prepended to the sequence of causes that (allegedly) needed explaining. In response to this difficulty, this chapter defends three theses. First, it argues that, if the argument from contingency is to succeed, the explanation of History in terms of God must not be a causal explanation; second, that a particular hypothesis about God’s relation to History—that God is what I call the foundational ground of History—is intelligible and explanatory; third and finally, that the explanatory advantages of this hypothesis cannot be had within the confines of naturalism.
Keywords contingency  God  explanation  grounding  cosmological argument
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