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Unread 03-03-2014, 02:45 PM   #1
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Metaphysics dialogue: Feser vs. Parsons

Thought some of you might find this interesting. First some background info:

A few years ago Keith Parsons, a philosopher of religion at UHCL (and founder of the philosophy of religion journal Philo) decided that the case for atheism and naturalism had been made as well as it could be and that arguments for theism were a fraud and he'd had enough. Not long after this Edward Feser (philosopher specializing in Aristotle and Thomas Aquinas at PCC [and convert to Christianity]) wrote about it on his blog, basically opining that it was a non-story since Parsons was hardly a major figure in the field.

Okay, so last month in the combox of a blog post, Parsons and Feser finally came head-to-head (so to speak) and decided to undertake an amicable exchange regarding a few questions Feser had after reading Parsons' comments. Here's the beginning of the dialogue:

1) ParsonsFeser

2) ParsonsFeser

3) ParsonsFeser

4) ParsonsFeser

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Unread 03-03-2014, 03:33 PM   #2
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Feser is fun
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Unread 03-03-2014, 03:47 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by athanatos View Post
Feser is fun
Have you read his book on Aquinas? I find myself leaning more towards classical theism than the varieties we see defended by folks like Plantinga, WLC, etc. However, I've not made any moves toward a thoroughgoing embrace of it or anything. Likely because of my relatively limited understanding and the fact that I'm otherwise generally impressed by Plantinga and some of the others who aren't persuaded by the Aristotelian-Thomistic tradition espoused by Feser.
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Unread 03-03-2014, 04:27 PM   #4
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I am getting more and more tired of analytic philosophy (doctrine of analogy falls flat; there is a trend toward univocal speech), and am finding considerable refuge and joy in Reformed Scholastism (i.e. modified Thomism) lately. The more I read Thomas and his metaphysics, the more every other metaphysical system seems weak, flimsy, superficial, novel.
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Unread 03-03-2014, 05:43 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by athanatos View Post
I am getting more and more tired of analytic philosophy (doctrine of analogy falls flat; there is a trend toward univocal speech), and am finding considerable refuge and joy in Reformed Scholastism (i.e. modified Thomism) lately. The more I read Thomas and his metaphysics, the more every other metaphysical system seems weak, flimsy, superficial, novel.
I'm not familiar with Reformed scholasticism. What distinguishes it from the A-T metaphysics Feser is employing here?
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Unread 03-03-2014, 09:22 PM   #6
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Maverick Philosopher: Book Notice: Edward Feser, Scholastic Metaphysics

I may need to get Feser's book because I miss some of the nuance entailed in Scholastic thought because of the specific terms used. I understand enough to know I don't understand fully.
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Unread 03-04-2014, 10:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slap_j View Post
I'm not familiar with Reformed scholasticism. What distinguishes it from the A-T metaphysics Feser is employing here?
By Reformed I mean -> Post-Reformation Protestant Scholastics, like Francis Turretin, Herman Bavinck, etc.

e.g. with the doctrine of divine simplicity:
"The Protestant Reformers and their scholastic heirs did not alter Thomas's account of the DDS in any significant way except to make the biblical motivations for the doctrine more explicit." (James Dolezal, "God without Parts," p. 8)
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Unread 04-26-2014, 12:13 PM   #8
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I started reading the exchange a few weeks ago, but didn't finish it until just now.

I have to say, it was a beautiful read, and a great example of how debates should be done. There graciousness, and the burying of the hatchet, gave me a hope for the future of sch discussions between theists and non-theists about the difficult and weighty matters.


In case no one realized, they are taking on a second exchange about morality and naturalism.

Index for Feser-Parsons Exchanges
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Unread 04-06-2015, 06:35 PM   #9
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Thanks for sharing that link, Thrash. Coming back to it almost a year later...
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