Contemporary Perspectives in Philosophy of Religion
Edited By Sebastian Kolodziejczyk and Janusz Salamon
Creation as a Metaphysical Concept
The metaphysical concept of creation should be preserved from ideological claims implied in the creationism vs. evolutionism debate. Two different topics have to be disentangled: 1°) the probability for living organisms to evolve with or without divine guidance; 2°) the ontological dependence of what there is upon a hypothetical (originating and sustaining) cause of its existence. The first topic often (even if not fatally) displays a disastrous mingling of observational evidence with metaphysically premature conclusions (whatever these may be: theistic or atheistic). Giving preliminarily and finally some reasons to cast doubt on the validity of arguing deductively from physical (or biological) states of affairs to God, this paper will be principally concerned with the second topic. The challenge of a rephrased argument to the existence of a creator is to point out new reasons for defeating the claim for a self-existent world, and therefore for arguing the ontological dependence the world might have on a creator.
The doctrine of creation is usually supposed to be: 1°) a religious belief proper to western monotheistic traditions; 2°) short of any rational justification; or even 3°) an irrational superstition, not compatible with scientific evidence.
Let us briefly comment on these preliminary considerations. First, it is true that the doctrine of creation has ruled, like a compelled article of a creed, over European philosophy from the 4th century to the Age of Enlightenment (from Augustine to Voltaire). But that a belief is forced doesn’t...
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