McCloskey Article (278.205 Kb)
Having completed the unit of philosophy of religion, you are now ready to respond to an article written by an actual atheist. This article, titled “On Being an Atheist,” was written by H. J. McCloskey in 1968 for the journal Question. McCloskey is an Australian philosopher who wrote a number of atheistic works in the 1960s and 70s including the book God and Evil (Nijhoff, 1974). In this article, McCloskey is both critical of the classical arguments for God’s existence and offers the problem of evil as a reason why one should not believe in God.
Your assignment is to read his short article, attached above, and respond to each of the questions below. The basis for your answers should…show more content…
The uncaused cause holds to that which is outside the framework of causation. Most philosophers hold that this first cause cannot be caused for the reason that it is outside causation. Something would need to set forth in motion the ring of causality. If the premise stands, then such a first cause would have to exist necessarily, otherwise it would have been caused. This necessity is one of causal relation, as long as the premise is accepted.
As regards the cosmological argument itself, McCloskey states that "all we entitled to infer is the existence of a cause commensurate with the effect to be explained, the universe, and this does not entitle us to postulate an all-powerful, all-perfect, uncaused cause." (p.63) This is indeed true, there is no reason to necessarily infer a God person, however; the inference is of the nature that suggests (hence the term infer) a cause of such magnitude that it is practically God-like. Moreover, his words do not disprove the rational of a God. Entitlement not to call this cause "God" is neither entitlement to deny calling this cause or considering this cause to be "God."
· 3. On the Teleological Argument: o McCloskey claims that “to get the proof going, genuine indisputable examples of design and purpose are needed.” Discuss this standard of “indisputability” which he calls a “very conclusive objection.” Is it reasonable? o From your reading in Evans, can you offer an example of design that,