PHI101_71013_Lecture18_Nov10

PHI101_71013_Lecture18_Nov10 - Pojman: Traditional...

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Pojman: “Traditional arguments for the existence of God” November 10, 2009
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Why should we care about seeking a rational basis for our belief in God? Isn’t all just a matter of faith? The question concerning whether or not God exists is probably the most important metaphysical question there is, in addition to being the most important personal question that one ever encounters.
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Theism The belief that there is one God, who is of a personal nature. That is, there is a supreme being who is all-powerful (omnipotent), all-knowing (omniscient), and all good (omnibenevolent) God is providentially active on the world. This is main belief in the Abrahamic religions’ (Christianity-Judaism-Islam) conception of God.
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Atheism : “Atheist” has come to mean anyone that does not believe in any god. Strictly speaking, the term actually means the rejection of the belief of the theistic God. (From Greek: ‘a’, denial of, and ‘theos’, God) So, it is possible to still believe in some sort of deity and be an atheist with respect to the rest. Consider Richard Dawkins’s claim: “Most people are atheists when it comes to the Greek gods – I just take it one step further” Strong atheism: a positive belief that there is no god(s) Weak atheism: a lack of belief in god(s)
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Friendly Theism Someone who believes in God, but recognizes that there are good reasons not to believe in God (or: that it is not irrational to be an atheist). Unfriendly theism Atheism is irrational. Friendly Atheism Someone who does not believe in God, but recognizes that there are good reasons to believe in God (or, that theism is rational).
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Monotheism Generally speaking, theism implies monotheism, or the belief in one God. Polytheism The belief in many gods. Hard polytheism: each of the gods is a distinct and separate being (e.g. ancient Greek and Roman mythologies) Soft polytheism: the gods are being subsumed into a greater whole (e.g. Hinduism)
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Pantheism The belief that everything is God; God just is the world, the universe, and all of creation. There is no God over and above the creation. e.g. Spinoza: no personal God, but God is the underlying substance of Nature.
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Deism The belief that God created the world, but then left it as is and is not provincially involved in it many have argued that some of the founding fathers were deists (e.g. Adams, Franklin, Jefferson, and Madison) Thomas Paine’s Age of Reason was an early deistic treatise critical of revealed religion Rejects revealed religion; holds that human reason and observations of the world reveal the existence of God Limited Theism The belief that God is very powerful, but not omnipotent or omniscient. Plato endorsed this view: for him, the creative act of God
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This note was uploaded on 11/11/2010 for the course PHI PHI 101 taught by Professor Delvin during the Fall '10 term at ASU.

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PHI101_71013_Lecture18_Nov10 - Pojman: Traditional...

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