Infinite Power and Finite Powers

In Benedikt Paul Goecke (ed.), The Infinity of God: Scientific, Theological, and Philosophical Perspectives. Notre Dame University Press (2019)
  Copy   BIBTEX


Alexander Pruss and I have proposed an analysis of omnipotence which makes no use of the problematic terms 'power' and 'ability'. However, this raises an obvious worry: if our analysis is not related to the notion of power, then how can it count as an analysis of omnipotence, the property of being all-powerful, at all? In this paper, I show how omnipotence can be understood as the possession of infinite power (general, universal, or unlimited power) rather than the possession of particular powers. I then argue that the ordinary notions of particular powers or abilities can be understood as applying vague limitations to the notion of infinite power. The vagueness of these limitations is the source of the well-known difficulties in the analysis of ability.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 93,296

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Infinity in Theology and Mathematics.Jill Le Blanc - 1993 - Religious Studies 29 (1):51-62.
Omnipotence.Joshua Hoffman & Gary Rosenkrantz - 2010 - In Charles Taliaferro, Paul Draper & Philip L. Quinn (eds.), A Companion to Philosophy of Religion. Oxford, UK: Wiley‐Blackwell. pp. 243–250.
The Power of Self-Motion in Cavendish's Nature.Marcy P. Lascano - 2021 - In Julia Jorati (ed.), Powers: A History. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 169-188.
Omnipotence.Graham Oppy - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (1):58–84.
Omnipotence.Kenneth L. Pearce - 2011 - The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Omnipotence.Joshua Hoffman & Gary S. Rosenkrantz - 2002 - In The Divine Attributes. Oxford, UK: Blackwell. pp. 166–178.
A Counterfactual Analysis in Defense of Aquinas's Inference of Omnipotence from Creation Ex Nihilo.Louis A. Mancha Jr - 2005 - Proceedings of the American Catholic Philosophical Association 79:145-155.


Added to PP

21 (#762,792)

6 months
120 (#37,807)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Kenneth L. Pearce
James Madison University

Citations of this work

Why Not? God.Kenneth L. Pearce - 2024 - In Mirosław Szatkowski (ed.), Ontology of Divinity. De Gruyter. pp. 249-266.
What is God's Power?Graham Renz - 2021 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 13 (3):87-112.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references