Tilting at Molinism

Edward Wierenga

in Molinism

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199590629
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731280 | DOI:
Tilting at Molinism

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Molinism holds that, in deciding which world to create, God exploits his middle knowledge, which is typically taken to include knowledge of counterfactuals of freedom. Counterfactual conditionals, however, do not satisfy strengthening (of the antecedent). But then knowledge of the truth of a counterfactual of freedom would not give God enough on which to base a decision about which world to create; for such a conditional could be true while related ones with fuller information in the antecedent are false. This chapter rejects the suggestion that so‐called ‘counterfactuals of world‐actualization’ provide a way around the problem and instead develops an approach according to which the relevant conditionals are built up in stages, with the antecedents of the conditionals at each stage including information about the initial segment of the world up to that point. Finally, Molinism is defended against the objections of Perszyk, van Inwagen, and Zimmerman.

Keywords: middle knowledge; counterfactuals of freedom; counterfactuals of world‐actualization; initial segments of possible worlds; Plantinga; Perszyk; van Inwagen; Zimmerman

Chapter.  9419 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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