The Coherence of Theism

Author: Richard Swinburne
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0198779690
Format: PDF, Docs
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The Coherence of Theism investigates what it means, and whether it is coherent, to say that there is a God. Richard Swinburne concludes that despite philosophical objections, most traditional claims about God are coherent (that is, do not involve contradictions); and although some of the most important claims are coherent only if the words by which they are expressed are being used in analogical senses, this is the way in which theologians have usually claimed that they are being used. When the first edition of this book was published in 1977, it was the first book in the new 'analytic' tradition of philosophy of religion to discuss these issues. Since that time there have been very many books and discussions devoted to them, and this new, substantially rewritten, second edition takes account of these discussions and of new developments in philosophy generally over the past 40 years. These discussions have concerned how to analyse the claim that God is 'omnipotent', whether God can foreknow human free actions, whether God is everlasting or timeless, and what it is for God to be a 'necessary being'. On all these issues this new edition has new things to say.

The Nature of Necessity

Author: Alvin Plantinga
Publisher: Clarendon Press
ISBN: 0191037176
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This is a reissue of a book which is an exploration and defence of the notion of modality 'de re', the idea that objects have both essential and accidental properties. It is one of the first full-length studies of the modalities to emerge from the debate to which Saul Kripke, David Lewis, Ruth Marcus and others have contributed. The argument is developed by means of the notion of possible worlds, and ranges over key problems including the nature of essence, trans-world identity, negative existential propositions, and the existence of unactual objects in other possible worlds. In the final chapters Professor Plantinga applies his logical theories to the clarification of two problems in the philosophy of religion - the Problem of Evil and the Ontological Argument.

Responsibility and Atonement

Author: Richard Swinburne
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 0198248490
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First volume of a tetralogy on the philosophy of Christian doctrine; second volume is Revelation, from metaphor to analogy.

Divine Foreknowledge and Human Freedom

Author: William Lane Craig
Publisher: BRILL
ISBN: 9789004092501
Format: PDF
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The ancient problem of fatalism, more particularly theological fatalism, has resurfaced with surprising vigour in the second half of the twentieth century. Two questions predominate in the debate: (1) Is divine foreknowledge compatible with human freedom and (2) How can God foreknow future free acts? Having surveyed the historical background of this debate in "The Problem of Divine Foreknowledge" and "Future Contingents from Aristotle to Suarez" (Brill: 1988), William Lane Craig now attempts to address these issues critically. His wide-ranging discussion brings together a thought- provoking array of related topics such as logical fatalism, multivalent logic, backward causation, precognition, time travel, counterfactual logic, temporal necessity, Newcomb's Problem, middle knowledge, and relativity theory. The present work serves both as a useful survey of the extensive literature on theological fatalism and related fields and as a stimulating assessment of the possibility of divine foreknowledge of future free acts.

Mind Brain and Free Will

Author: Richard Swinburne
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199662576
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Richard Swinburne presents a powerful new case for substance dualism and for libertarian free will. He argues that pure mental events (including conscious events) are distinct from physical events and interact with them, and claims that no result from neuroscience or any other science could show that interaction does not take place. Swinburne goes on to argue for agent causation, and claims that it is we, and not our intentions, that cause our brain events. It ismetaphysically possible that each of us could acquire a new brain or continue to exist without a brain; and so we are essentially souls. Brain events and conscious events are so different from each other that it would not be possible to establish a scientific theory which would predict what each ofus would do in situations of moral conflict. Hence, we should believe that things are as they seem to be: that we make choices independently of the causes which influence us. It follows that we are morally responsible for our actions.

The Scientific Image

Author: Bas C. Van Fraassen
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198244271
Format: PDF, Docs
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The aim of The Scientific Image is to develop an empiricist alternative to both logical positivism and scientific realism. Against positivism, the author insists on a literal interpretation of the language of science, and on an irreducibly pragmatic dimension of theory acceptance. Against realism he argues that the central aim of science is empirical adequacy, and that the only belief involved in the acceptance of a scientific theory is belief that the theory fits the observable phenomena. To substatiate this, the book presents three mutually supporting theories concerning science. The first is an account of the relation between a scientific theory and the empirical world. The second is a new theory of explanation and why-questions, according to which the explanatory power of a theory is a pragmatic aspect which goes beyond its empirical import, but which provides no additional reasons for believing it. And the third is an interpretation of probability in physical theory, with reference to both classical and quantum physics. The presentation of these three central theses is preceded by two chapters which provide an informal introduction to current debates in the philosophy of science, particularly concerning scientific realism.

Theism and Explanation

Author: Gregory W. Dawes
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135841349
Format: PDF, Kindle
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In this timely study, Dawes defends the methodological naturalism of the sciences. Though religions offer what appear to be explanations of various facts about the world, the scientist, as scientist, will not take such proposed explanations seriously. Even if no natural explanation were available, she will assume that one exists. Is this merely a sign of atheistic prejudice, as some critics suggest? Or are there good reasons to exclude from science explanations that invoke a supernatural agent? On the one hand, Dawes concedes the bare possibility that talk of divine action could constitute a potential explanation of some state of affairs, while noting that the conditions under which this would be true are unlikely ever to be fulfilled. On the other hand, he argues that a proposed explanation of this kind would rate poorly, when measured against our usual standards of explanatory virtue.

Knowledge of God

Author: Alvin Plantinga
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1444301314
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Is belief in God epistemically justified? That's the question at the heart of this volume in the Great Debates in Philosophy series, with Alvin Plantinga and Michael Tooley each addressing this fundamental question with distinctive arguments from opposing perspectives. The first half of the book contains each philosopher's explanation of his particular view; the second half allows them to directly respond to each other's arguments, in a lively and engaging conversation Offers the reader a one of a kind, interactive discussion Forms part of the acclaimed Great Debates in Philosophy series

Faith and Reason

Author: Richard Swinburne
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 0199283923
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Richard Swinburne presents a new edition of the final volume of his acclaimed trilogy on philosophical theology. Faith and Reason is a self-standing examination of the implications for religious faith of Swinburne's famous arguments about the coherence of theism and the existence of God. By practising a particular religion, a person seeks to achieve some or all of three goals - that he worships and obeys God, gains salvation for himself, and helps others to attain their salvation. But not all religions commend worship, and different religions have different conceptions of salvation. Faced with these differences, Richard Swinburne argues that we should practice that religion which has the best goals and is more probably true than the creeds of other religions. He proposes criteria by which to determine the probabilities of different religious creeds, and he argues that, while requiring total commitment, faith does not demand fully convinced belief. While maintaining the samestructure and conclusions as the original classic, this second edition has been substantially rewritten, both in order to relate its ideas more closely to those of classical theologians and philosophers and to respond to more recent views. In particular he discusses, and ultimately rejects, the view of Alvin Plantinga that the 'warrant' of a belief depends on the process which produced it, and John Hick's contention that all religions offer valid paths to salvation.

Faith Has Its Reasons

Author: Kenneth Boa
Publisher: InterVarsity Press
ISBN: 0830858911
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Ever since the apostle Paul addressed the Stoic and Epicurean philosophers in Athens, relating the Christian worldview to a non-Christian world has been a challenge. And despite Peter's charge to be ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you (1 Peter 3:15), most Christian laypeople have left apologetics—the defense of the faith—to the ecclesiastical pros. Faith Has Its Reasons is a study of four different models of how apologetics should be done, an assessment of their strengths and weaknesses, and a proposal for integrating the best insights of each. Kenneth Boa and Robert Bowman have assembled a wealth of information about what Christians believe and how to present that faith to an unbelieving world. Remarkable both in its depth of content and ease of accessibility, Faith Has Its Reasons gives Christian laypeople the tools to address such critical questions as: Why is belief in God rational despite the prevalence of evil in the world? What facts support the church's testimony that Jesus rose from the dead? Can we be certain Christianity is true? How can our faith in Christ be based on something more secure than our own understanding without descending into an irrational emotionalism?