Friday, September 14, 2012

For the defense …

… A Philosopher Defends Religion by Thomas Nagel | The New York Review of Books. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Plantinga discusses many topics in the course of the book, but his most important claims are epistemological. He holds, first, that the theistic conception of the relation between God, the natural world, and ourselves makes it reasonable for us to regard our perceptual and rational faculties as reliable. It is therefore reasonable to believe that the scientific theories they allow us to create do describe reality. He holds, second, that the naturalistic conception of the world, and of ourselves as products of unguided Darwinian evolution, makes it unreasonable for us to believe that our cognitive faculties are reliable, and therefore unreasonable to believe any theories they may lead us to form, including the theory of evolution. In other words, belief in naturalism combined with belief in evolution is self-defeating. However, Plantinga thinks we can reasonably believe that we are the products of evolution provided that we also believe, contrary to naturalism, that the process was in some way guided by God.


  1. Interestingly, Plantinga, who by all accounts has a tremendous mind and has brought "proofs-of-God" back to philosophical respectability, is a memeber of the Bible is irrerrant camp...

  2. Prosblogion Reviews: Where the Conflict Really Lies
    By James Beebe on February 3, 2012 2:44 PM