Winter 2022 (volume 24, no. 2)

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Ross D. Inman

Editor’s Introduction


Walter J. Schultz

An Augustinian-Edwardsian Metaphysics of Possibility for the Barcan Formula

The Barcan formula is a theorem of quantified modal logic. Its most straightforward interpretation appears to commit one to “possibilism,” the view that merely possible things exist. Alternative systems of logic revise the formal semantics to preclude the theorem and its consequences. The crux, however, is the modal metaphysics presupposed by the formal semantics. This paper presents an alternative metaphysics of possibility that follows Augustine’s suggestion that God’s plan is only one of a range of alternative histories for a creation. The metaphysics is a version of “trace actualism”—neither pure possibilism nor pure actualism.

Dwayne Moore

The Argument from Reason and the Dual Process Reply

The argument from reason states that if naturalism is true, then our beliefs are caused by physical processes rather than being causally based in their reasons, so our beliefs are not knowledge—including the belief in naturalism itself. Recent critics of the argument from reason provide dual process replies to the argument from reason—our beliefs can have both a naturalistic cause/ explanation and be caused/explained by its reasons, thereby showing that naturalism can accommodate knowledge. In this paper I consider three dual process replies and conclude that none of them are successful

Scott Smith

Propositions: Who Needs Them? – Craig’s Nominalism Revisited

William Lane Craig maintains that propositions and properties are not real. Yet, if we examine his proposed nominalism and his appeal to Rudolf Carnap’s linguistic frameworks, we can find that his view depends upon their reality, even as abstract objects. By drawing upon phenomenological insights, I argue that if we pay close attention to what can be before our minds in conscious awareness, we can become aware that there is more to what is real than simple, concrete particulars, even in his linguistic examples. We can become aware of the reality of Platonic, ante rem universals, including propositions and properties.

John M. DePoe

Skeptical Theism and the Problem of Moral Skepticism – Divine Moral Knowledge as Transcendent and Continuous with Human Moral Knowledge

One objection to skeptical theism is that it implies radical moral skepticism. Humans cannot make any moral judgments on this view because of their ignorance of the inaccessible divine knowledge that is called upon to explain the existence of apparently gratuitous evil. In answering this objection, I propose two important moves for skeptical theists. First, skeptical theists should be positive skeptical theists (the existence of God positively implies the appearance of gratuitous evil), rather than negative skeptical theists (the appearance of gratuitous evil is probabilistically inscrutable given theism). Second, the skeptical theist can affirm a model of divine transcendence whereby the unknown divine moral knowledge is continuous with human moral knowledge. These two moves, I contend, assist in saving skeptical theism from accusations of radical moral skepticism.

Thomas M. Ward

Omnipotence and the Morality of Hating God

Could God command us to hate him? Here I offer two arguments that He cannot. I also argue that this restriction on God’s power is consistent with a strong doctrine of omnipotence according to which God can do anything broadly logical possible.

Book Reviews

Chris D. Lee

What Is Race? Four Philosophical Views, edited by Joshua Glasgow, Sally Haslanger, Chike Jeffers, and Quayshawn Spencer

Dan Kemp

The Cambridge Companion to Natural Law Ethics, edited by Tom Angier

Lauriston Smith

Naturalism, Human Flourishing, and Asian Philosophy, edited by Bongrae Seok

Paul Copan

The Encyclopedia of Philosophy of Religion, edited by Stewart Goetz and Charles Taliaferro


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