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Developmental TheismFrom Pure Will to Unbounded Love$
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Peter Forrest

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199214587

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199214587.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Developmental Theism

Peter Forrest (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This introductory chapter explains why speculation about God is important even if does not provide probable conclusions. Firstly, speculation provides a sample out of all the possible hypotheses, and so if the best hypothesis out of the sample is theism-friendly, it is fairly probable that the best of all hypotheses is. Secondly, defensive apologetics uses speculation to show Christianity as consistent. Thirdly, speculation lifts the probability of theism enough to support revelation, which in turn supports theism, in a positive feedback called bootstrapping. Fourthly, speculation helps people understand better their religious beliefs. Next, speculation is part of a dialectic that leads to intellectual progress. Finally, even if the case for theism is judged to be weak, speculation can support a religious committed agnosticism.

Keywords:   agnosticism, defensive apologetics, bootstrapping, dialectic, speculation

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