The philosophical problem of knowledge of other minds is rational justifiction. this paper covers n malcolm, h h price, j mill, strawson, hamshire, l wittgenstein and a j ayer's controversial thought. philosophical scepticism holds that it is logically impossible to know mental experiences. "i know, i have a pain." how do i know that other people also can have similar pain? it provides as ideal knowledge of mental events. when i say, "i have a pain," i can have certain knowledge (...) of this because i have conclusive individual evidence for it. (shrink)
It is shown that the logical truth of instances of the T-schema is incompatible with the formal nature of logical truth. In particular, since the formality of logical truth entails that the set of logical truths is closed under substitution, the logical truth of T-schema instances entails that all sentences are logical truths.
According to classical theism, impassibility is said to be systematically connected to divine attributes like timelessness, immutability, simplicity, aseity, and self-sufficiency. In some interesting way, these attributes are meant to explain why the impassible God cannot suffer. I shall argue that these attributes do not explain why the impassible God cannot suffer. In order to understand why the impassible God cannot suffer, one must examine the emotional life of the impassible God. I shall argue that the necessarily happy emotional life (...) of the classical God explains why the impassible God cannot suffer. (shrink)
The End of the Timeless God considers two approaches to the philosophy of time, presentism and eternalism. It is often held that God cannot be timeless if presentism is true, but can be if eternalism is true. R. T. Mullins draws on recent work in the philosophy of time as well as the work of classical Christian thinkers such as Augustine, Anselm, and Aquinas to contend that the Christian God cannot be timeless in either case.
In certain theological circles today, panentheism is all the rage. One of the most notorious difficulties with panentheism lies in figuring out what panentheism actually is. There have been several attempts in recent literature to demarcate panentheism from classical theism, neo-classical theism, open theism, and pantheism. I shall argue that these attempts to demarcate panentheism from these other positions fail. Then I shall offer my own demarcation.
An introductory exploration on the nature of emotions, and examination of some of the critical issues surrounding the emotional life of God as they relate to happiness, empathy, love, and moral judgments. Covering the different criteria used in the debate between impassibility and passibility, readers can begin to think about which emotions can be predicated of God and which cannot.
Christian theism claims that God is in some sense responsible for the existence and nature of time. There are at least two options for understanding this claim. First, the creationist option, which says that God creates time. Second, the identification view, which says that time is to be identified with God. Both options will answer the question, “what is time?” differently. I shall consider different versions of the creationist option, and offer several objections that the view faces. I will also (...) consider different versions of the identification view, and argue that the objections it faces can be refuted. (shrink)
We review scholarship that examines relationships - and distinctions - between religion and delusion. We begin by outlining and endorsing the position that both involve belief. Next, we present the prevailing psychiatric view that religious beliefs are not delusional if they are culturally accepted. While this cultural exemption has controversial implications, we argue it is clinically valuable and consistent with a growing awareness of the social - as opposed to purely epistemic - function of belief formation. Finally, we review research (...) on continuities between religious and delusional cognition, which reveals that religious content is quite common in delusions and which provides tentative evidence for a positive relationship between religious belief and delusion-like belief in the general population. (shrink)
Within contemporary evangelical theology, a peculiar controversy has been brewing over the past few decades with regard to the doctrine of the Trinity. A good number of prominent evangelical theologians and philosophers are rejecting the doctrine of divine processions within the eternal life of the Trinity. In William Hasker’s recent Metaphysics and the Tri-Personal God, Hasker laments this rejection and seeks to offer a defense of this doctrine. This paper shall seek to accomplish a few things. In section I, I (...) shall first set the stage for a proper understanding of the discussion. Section II will articulate the basic Trinitarian desiderata that must be satisfied by any model of the doctrine of the Trinity. This will help one understand the debate between Hasker and the procession deniers. Section III will offer an articulation of what the doctrine of divine processions teaches. Section IV will examine Hasker’s defense of the doctrine point by point. I shall argue that his defense of the doctrine of the divine processions fails. (shrink)
Proclus (c.412-485) once offered an argument that Christians took to stand against the Christian doctrine of creation ex nihilo based on the eternity of the world and God’s perfection. John Philoponus (c.490-570) objected to this on various grounds. Part of this discussion can shed light on contemporary issues in philosophical theology on divine perfection and creation. First I will examine Proclus’ dilemma and John Philoponus’ response. I will argue that Philoponus’ fails to rebut Proclus’ dilemma. The problem is that presentism (...) is incompatible with divine simplicity, timelessness, and a strong doctrine of immutability. From there I will look at how this discussion bears on contemporary understandings of divine perfection and creation, and argue that there are at least two possible ways contemporary philosophical theologians can try to get around the dilemma. One option is to adopt four-dimensional eternalism and maintain the traditional account of the divine perfections. I argue that this option suffers from difficulties that are not compatible with Christian belief. The other option is to keep presentism and modify the divine perfections. I argue that this option is possible and preferable since our understanding of the divine perfections must be modified in light of divine revelation and the incarnation. (shrink)
We first consider the entailment logic MC, based on meaning containment, which contains neither the Law of Excluded Middle (LEM) nor the Disjunctive Syllogism (DS). We then argue that the DS may be assumed at least on a similar basis as the assumption of the LEM, which is then justified over a finite domain or for a recursive property over an infinite domain. In the latter case, use is made of Mathematical Induction. We then show that an instance of the (...) LEM is intrumental in the proof of Cantor's Theorem, and we then argue that this is based on a more general form than can be reasonably justified. We briefly consider the impact of our approach on arithmetic and naive set theory, and compare it with intuitionist mathematics and briefly with recursive mathematics. Our "Four Basic Logical Issues" paper would provide useful background, the current paper being an application of the some of the ideas in it. (shrink)
Every person acquires a worldview, a picture of reality. Within that picture, the existence of some things will be taken wholly for granted as the background to, and support of, everything else. Their existence will rarely be questioned. The cosmos or universe, the gods, God, Brahman, Heaven, the Absolute--R. T. Allen claims that all these and other world- views have been held to be that which necessarily exists and upon which all other beings depend in one way or another. European (...) philosophers, since antiquity, have offered arguments to show that their chosen candidates for the role of the necessary being or beings that support the rest of reality do actually exist. The Necessity of God sets the valid core of previous ontological arguments. It does not and cannot prove that God exists, but only that something necessarily exists. In an a priori manner and without inferring anything from what in fact exists, Allen proceeds to show that which necessarily exists is one, transfinite, eternal, and the archetype of personal existence: in short, that it is God as classically conceived. As for everything else that may exist, it must be finite and dependent for its existence upon God as its creator and sustainer. Few things are more erroneous in philosophy and disastrous in practice than artificial constructions produced without constant reference to concrete reality. That which necessarily exists may be the one exception. Before this constructive argument, Allen examines previous examples of ontological arguments in order to show exactly where they go wrong and to extract the valid core obscured within them. This will make clear the difference between them and his new version. The reader who is eager to engage the philosophical sources of belief will find a distinct treasure in The Necessity of God. (shrink)
"This book is not an academic study of what the church has taught, or what scholars have said, but rather a challenging study of what the Bible itself says about God. In The Living God, author R.T. France encourages us to come to grips with the broad sweep of biblical data, showing us that the God of the Bible is neither passive nor far removed from our everyday lives, but rather a dynamic and living reality to be engaged."--Back cover.
I greatly appreciate Thomas Flint’s reply to my paper, “Flint’s ‘Molinism and the Incarnation’ is too Radical.” In my original paper I argue that the Christology and eschatology of Flint’s paper “Molinism and the Incarnation” is too radical to be considered orthodox. I consider it an honor that a senior scholar, such as Flint, would concern himself with my work in the first place. In this response to Flint’s reply I will explain why I still find Flint’s Christology and eschatology (...) to be too radical. Below I shall attempt to address various issues raised by Flint in his reply. (shrink)
Sam Lebens offers an intriguing set of arguments from theism to idealism. In this paper, I shall focus on the argument from perfect rationality to Hassidic Idealism. I will offer a critical analysis of this argument and draw out a series of conflicts between Hassidic Idealism and divine freedom, the divine ideas, and creation ex nihilo.
Divine temporality is all the rage in certain theological circles today. Some even suggesting that the doctrine of the Trinity entails divine temporality. While I find this claim a bit strong, I do think that divine temporality can be quite useful for developing a robust model of the Trinity. However, not everyone agrees with this. Paul Helm has offered an objection to the so-called Oxford school of divine temporality based on the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. He has argued that (...) this form of divine temporality entails Arianism. In other words, divine temporality suffers from an inadequate doctrine of the Trinity. In this paper I shall first articulate the so-called Oxford school of divine temporality. From there I shall develop some of the Oxford school’s theological benefits that help flesh out the doctrine of the Trinity, and assuage the charge of Arianism. Then I shall offer an examination and refutation of the Arian charge to divine temporality in order to show that the divine temporalist can maintain a robust Trinitarian theology. (shrink)
In a recent paper on panentheism, Raphael Lataster and Purushottama Bilimoria offer a critique of several contemporary attempts to define what panentheism is and what panentheism is not. Lataster and Bilimoria find the recent attempts to define panentheism deficient. In particular, they find my approach to panentheism to be riddled with problems. In my reply, I explain that Lataster and Bilimoria have failed to explain what panentheism is and what it is not.
In this paper, I offer some brief reflections on Jordan Wessling’s book, Love Divine: A Systematic Account of God’s Love for Humanity. I explain what I take to be its strengths in articulating an account of divine love that solves a variety of problems that classical theism cannot solve. Then I articulate a potential problem for Wessling’s account of divine love and hell.
The author conducts an investigation into the biological foundations of mental phenomena, together with a short history of reason itself, in the course of which he discovers that "the formation of abstract concepts did only begin at the time of Plato."--R. T. L.
In this Aquinas lecture the author defends the idea of wisdom as a valid and valuable topic for philosophic discussion. Collins devotes most of his energies to explaining the largely neglected Cartesian view of wisdom. He concludes that by the method of "metaphysical ingression" we can give the subject of wisdom its proper close connection with the whole of metaphysics.--R. T. L.
A portion of the works of Lachelier give a comprehensive view of the kind of neo-Kantian idealism he espouses. In his introduction Mr. Ballard presents a summary of Lachelier's philosophy, expanding somewhat on the more obscure sections of his work.--R. T. L.
This article tries to analyze the meaning of a decent minimum of health care, by confronting the idea of decent care with the concept of justice. Following the ideas of Margalith about a decent society, the article argues that a just minimum of care is not necessarily a decent minimum. The way this minimum is provided can still humiliate individuals, even if the end result is the best possible distribution of the goods as seen from the viewpoint of justice. This (...) analysis is combined with an analysis from the perspective of solidarity, particularly of reflective solidarity, as a way to develop decent care, which is care that does not humiliate individuals and maintains their dignity. (shrink)