Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Quote Of The Day: Mike D On Thomism's Fuzzy Ambiguous God Concept

Today's quote of the day comes from blogger Mike D over at the aunicornist.com replying to blogger Steven Jake on how the god of Thomism is as vague as can be. The god of Thomism to me is incoherent. I can't make sense of its properties. I wrote about this in my critique of Edward Feser's book and Steven Jake responded saying "the doctrine of analogy is precisely predicated on the fact that we don’t know 'how [G]od really is,'" and "an analogous attribution itself necessitates a vague (though not necessarily so mysterious) application—again, that’s what an analogy is." I critiqued that in my response to his criticism of me, but I think Mike D takes the cake is his comment below, which I think mashes Jake's view to a pulp.

It is trivially true that we don't necessarily have to know how the causal entity could work; it doesn't have to be a rigorously established theory, for example. But in the case of the God-concept, you aren't even able to articulate a hypothesis of God's causal mechanisms, precisely because you aren't able to articulate a concept of God in unequivocal terms. It's not simply a matter of God's causal mechanisms being "not clear", but rather a fundamental problem with the confused and ambiguous semantics underpinning the God-concept itself. You have no prayer (excuse the pun) of even theoretically explaining how God can causally interact with the universe or even do anything at all because you can't state in unambiguous, unequivocal terms what God even is in the first place.
What you're stuck with, as a theist, is an unexplainable, unobservable entity whose actions can neither be coherently described nor predicted that nonetheless has causal influence over and/or within the observable universe. That is exactly what magical thinking is: "the attribution of causal or synchronistic relationships between actions and events which seemingly cannot be justified by reason and observation." [Wiki] 
In other words, you've posited an entity whose properties are so ambiguous that no argument or observation could ever be used to falsify a claim that X effect was caused by the entity. You've posited a being that always explains everything, and therefore explains nothing.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...