A de facto Dualism


Plantinga and his followers, e.g. the Plantigapage, put their main emphasis on our personal knowledge and experience of God.  This follows in the Protestant, existential, I - Thou tradition.  There is plenty of analysis, in the modern genre, but little in the way of systematics and virtually no cosmology beyond fairly cursory examinations of the Anthropic Principle.  

Our theistic philosophers are focusing on rebutting the backlog of analytical arguments against our putative knowledge of God.  Once again, it's possible, to believe in God and still be considered rational.  

Is it thereby irrational not to believe in God?  No.  I know of no instance where these theistic philosophers attack the tenets of materialism, beyond alluding to what is already being debated on the mind-body problem.  There is no active theistic angle in that debate.  They are sticking to the epistemology, and questions of metaphysics and ontology are avoided. 

As long as the traditional Religion vs. Science duality is respected there will be no real confrontations.  Earlier I have alluded to the 'Intelligent Designers'.  They remain an intellectually isolated, minuscule faction of evangelical scientists who, I believe, are barking (loudly!) up the wrong tree. 

My belief is that this duality is unstable.  It was unstable before Darwin, and is more so now.  However, there will be no new movement until the metaphysical dualism behind the Religion vs. Science duality is questioned.  The mind-body debate should provide the opportunity to raise this question, but it will not happen from a global or cosmological perspective until the God question is brought into that debate. 

It would then not take much to rock this boat.  From my outsider perspective, I can't tell yet what is the source of this remarkable restraint against boat rocking. 


One job now would be to go through the Plantinga related sites looking for anyone who might be contemplating any of the of the boat rocking stratagem being outlined here: Google: Plantinga & ??. 

It should be noted that , in his 'Metaphilosophy of Naturalism', Quentin Smith, a naturalist, does claim that modern naturalism has been defeated: 

Due to the typical attitude of the contemporary naturalist, which is similar to the attitude expressed by Searle in the previous quote, the vast majority of naturalist philosophers have come to hold (since the late 1960s) an unjustified belief in naturalism. Their justifications have been defeated by arguments developed by theistic philosophers, and now naturalist philosophers, for the most part, live in darkness about the justification for naturalism. They may have a true belief in naturalism, but they have no knowledge that naturalism is true since they do not have an undefeated justification for their belief. If naturalism is true, then their belief in naturalism is accidentally true. This philosophical failure (ignoring theism and thereby allowing themselves to become unjustified naturalists) has led to a cultural failure since theists, witnessing this failure, have increasingly become motivated to assume or argue for supernaturalism in their academic work, to an extent that academia has now lost its mainstream secularization. 

He, too, is wondering why this news does not get around. 

On the other hand, please note that Quentin is the editor of the Philo journal, now in its fifth year: 

Philo is the only professional philosophy journal devoted exclusively to criticisms of theism and defenses or developments of naturalism. To facilitate discussion and debate, Philo also publishes defenses of theism and criticisms of naturalism. The interest in naturalism extends to the relevant branches of naturalist philosophy, such as naturalist metaphysics, and especially naturalist ethics.   

Obviously we do not have a total blackout.  Along these same lines I would also note THE SKEPTICAL THEISM WEBSITE.  This site is rather less pessimistic about the state of naturalism. 

And also, just from Google: Plantinga & Quentin, there is Scientific Materialism, Intelligent Design, and the Cosmological Argument

Let's see if the boat is at least heeling just a bit.  

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