Lively debates on controversial and compelling questions in the philosophy of religion — an updated edition of the bestselling title
Building upon the reputation of the first edition, the extensively revised second edition of Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Religion features fifteen essays which present arguments on some of the most central and controversial topics in philosophy of religion from the discipline’s most influential thinkers. Considering questions of both emerging and perennial interest from atheistic, theistic, and agnostic viewpoints, the book adopts the series structure which pairs essays espousing opposing perspectives on a particular question or theme in an engaging pro and con format.
Following accessible introductions to each debate, the volume’s new and newly-revised contributions set the stage for thoughtful and lively discourse between philosophers in philosophy of religion and analytic theology. Debates range from vigorous disagreements between theists and their critics to arguments between theists of different philosophical and theological persuasions, highlighting points of contrast for readers while showcasing the field’s leading minds in dialogue. The head-to-head chapters offer forceful advocacy for some of the most compelling ideas, beliefs, and objections in the philosophy of religion, opening the conversation up to students to weigh the arguments and engage in comparative analysis of the concepts for themselves.
Written to appeal to the non-specialist as well as the professional philosopher, Contemporary Debates in Philosophy of Religion is ideal as both a provocative primary text for coursework in analytical theology and philosophy of religion, and as a broad survey of the field for scholars and general readers with an interest in the questions which underpin contemporary philosophy of religion and theology.
Table of Contents
Notes on Contributors
Preface to the First edition
Preface to the Second edition
Arguments for Religious Belief
1) Does the Universe have a Cause?
a) Affirmative Position: The Universe has a Cause
Robert C. Koons
b) Negative Position: The Universe does not have a Cause
c) Reply to Oppy
d) Reply to Koons
2) Is Fine-Tuning Evidence that God Exists?
a) Affirmative Position: Fine-Tuning is Evidence that God Exists
b) Negative Position: Fine-Tuning is not Evidence that God Exists
c) Reply to Sober
d) Reply to Collins
3) Is God Necessary For Morality?
a) Affirmative Position: God is Necessary for Morality
b) Negative Position: Atheism, Naturalism, and Morality
c) Reply to Antony
d) Reply to Linville
4) Does Religious Experience Justify Religious Belief?
a) Affirmative Position: Religious Experience Justifies Religious Belief
William L. Alston
b) Negative Position: Do Mystics See God?
c) Reply to Fales
d) Reply to Alston
5) Does Testimony about Miracles Provide Evidence for Religion?
a) Affirmative Position: The Case for Miracles
Charity Anderson and Alexander Pruss
b) Negative Position: Testimony about Miracles does not Provide Evidence
c) Reply to Ahmed
d) Reply to Anderson and Pruss
Challenges to Religious Belief
6) Is Evil Evidence against God’s Existence?
a) Positive Position: Evil is Evidence against God’s Existence
William L. Rowe
b) Negative Position: Evil Does Not Make Atheism More Reasonable Than Theism
Dan Howard-Snyder and Michael Bergmann
c) Reply to Howard-Snyder and Bergmann
d) Reply to Rowe
7) Does Divine Hiddenness Justify Atheism?
a) Affirmative Position: Divine Hiddenness Justifies Atheism
b) Negative Position: Divine Hiddenness Does Not Justify Atheism
c) Reply to Moser
d) Reply to Schellenberg
8) Does Science Discredit Religion?
a) Affirmative Position: Science Discredits Religion
b) Negative Position: Science Does Not Discredit Religion
Michael L. Peterson
c) Reply to Peterson
d) Reply to Ruse
9) Is the God of the Hebrew Bible Perfectly Good?
a) Negative Position: The God of Ancient Israel is not Perfectly Good
C. Wesley Morriston
b) Positive Position: The Perfect Goodness of God in the Hebrew Scriptures
Mark C. Murphy
c) Reply to Murphy
d) Reply to Morriston
10) Is it Reasonable to Believe That Only One Religion is True?
a) Affirmative Position: It is Reasonable to believe that only one Religion is True
b) Negative Position: It is Not Reasonable to Believe that Only One Religion is True
c) Reply to Byrne
d) Reply to Basinger
Issues within Religion
11) Is Evidence Required for Religious Belief?
a) Affirmative Position: Evidence is Required for Religious Belief
b) Negative Position: Evidence is not Required for Religious Belief
Raymond J. VanArragon
c) Reply to VanArragon
d) Reply to McAllister
12) Should we Think of God as Masculine?
a) Negative Position A: Is God a Man?
b) Negative Position B: God is not Male
c) Reply to Pogin
d) Reply to Rea
13) Does God Take Risks in Governing the World?
a) Affirmative Position: God Takes Risks
b) Negative Position: God Does Not Take Risks
c) Reply to Helm
d) Reply to Hasker
14) Should Christians Endorse Mind-Body Dualism?
a) Affirmative Position: Christians Should Affirm Mind-Body Dualism
b) Negative Position: Christians Should Reject Mind-Body Dualism
Lynne Rudder Baker
c) Reply to Baker
d) Reply to Zimmerman
15) Is Eternal Damnation Compatible with the Christian Concept of God?
a) Affirmative Position: Eternal Hell and the Christian Concept of God
b) Negative Position: No Hell
c) Reply to Talbott
d) Reply to Walls