Thomas Atkinson
University of Liverpool
In his 1998 postscript to ‘The Possibility of Resurrection’ Peter van Inwagen argues that the scenario he describes by which God might resurrect a human organism, even though probably not true, is still conceivable and, consequently, ‘serves to establish a possibility’, namely, the metaphysical possibility of the resurrection of material beings. Van Inwagen, however, has also argued in favour of ‘modal scepticism’ [van Inwagen in, God, knowledge and mystery: essays in philosophical theology, Cornell University Press, Ithaca 1995b, pp. 11–12; van Inwagen in, Philos Stud 92:67–84, 1998a]. That is, he thinks that we should limit all our claims about what is possible to ‘ordinary propositions about everyday matters’, 1998a). In this paper I argue that van Inwagen’s modal argument as found in ‘The Possibility of Resurrection’ is inconsistent with his modal scepticism as found in ‘Modal Epistemology’. In consequence, I argue that, given his modal scepticism, the task van Inwagen set himself in ‘The Possibility of Resurrection’ has not been achieved.
Keywords Modality  Death  Survival  Animalism  Modal Epistemology
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DOI 10.1007/s11153-016-9573-2
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References found in this work BETA

Material Beings.Peter van Inwagen - 1990 - Ithaca: Cornell University Press.
Material Beings.Peter Van Inwagen - 1990 - Cornell University Press.
Is Conceivability a Guide to Possibility?Stephen Yablo - 1993 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (1):1-42.
Material Beings.Peter van Inwagen - 1993 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 53 (3):701-708.

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