Chapter

O'Connor's Cosmological Argument

Graham Oppy

in Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion Volume 3

Published in print February 2011 | ISBN: 9780199603213
Published online May 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191725388 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199603213.003.0009

Series: Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion

O'Connor's Cosmological Argument

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In Theism and Explanation, Tim O'Connor provides ‘an argument for the existence of a transcendent necessary being as the source and basis of the ultimate explanation of contingent beings and their interconnected histories’. This chapter argues that O'Connor's argument is unsuccessful: each of the three most plausible naturalistic views concerning ‘the ultimate explanation of contingent beings and their interconnected histories’ is more theoretically virtuous than any account that is committed to transcendent necessary beings. Thus, the chapter argues that naturalists can reasonably refuse to choose between ‘infinite regress’, ‘brute contingency’, and ‘immanent necessity’ (at least insofar as we are concerned with the ultimate explanation of contingent beings and their interconnected histories).

Keywords: contingency; cosmological argument; naturalism; O'Connor; theism; ultimate explanation

Chapter.  9453 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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