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Topic: Divine simplicity

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In the News (Sun 26 May 19)

  The Nature and Attributes of God
The Divine attributes or perfections which may thus logically be distinguished are very numerous, and it would be a needless task to attempt to enumerate them fully.
Divine immensity means on the one hand that God is necessarily present everywhere in space as the immanent cause and sustainer of creatures, and on the other hand that He transcends the limitations of actual and possible space, and cannot be circumscribed or measured or divided by any spatial relations.
Indeed, Divine knowledge itself is really identical with Divine essence, as are all the attributes and acts of God; but according to our finite modes of thought we feel the need of conceiving them distinctly and of representing the Divine essence as the medium or mirror in which the Divine intellect sees all truth.
www.catholicity.com /encyclopedia/d/divine,nature_and_attributes.html   (5830 words)

 [No title]
DIVINE PERSONALITY When we say that God is a personal being we mean that He is intelligent and free and distinct from the created universe.
Divine Knowledge Description of the Divine Knowledge That God is omniscient or possesses the most perfect knowledge of all things, follows from His infinite perfection.
The Divine Will Description of the Divine Will (a) The highest perfections of creatures are reducible to functions of intellect and will, and, as these perfections are realized analogically in God, we naturally pass from considering Divine knowledge or intelligence to the study of Divine volition.
www.ewtn.com /library/DOCTRINE/06612A.TXT   (5837 words)

 Divine Providence - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
[Divine] supervision of the individual) is discussed throughout Rabbinic literature, and in particular by the classical Jewish philosophers.
Divine providence is discussed by all of the major thinkers, but its extent and nature is a matter of dispute
"Divine Providence is connected with Divine intellectual influence, and the same beings which are benefited by the latter so as to become intellectual, and to comprehend things comprehensible to rational beings, are also under the control of Divine Providence, which examines all their deeds in order to reward or punish them." (Guide 3:18).
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Divine_Providence   (2146 words)

 Russian Spiritual Christianity and Sectarianism in Russia
The split of Tolstoy from cultural society and his passionate search for the Divine simplicity of life was felt by many, as a return to the wellsprings of nature and national life, distorted by all the fatal process of civilisation.
This is felt in the non-simplicity of style, in the imitation of the language of Nietzsche, in the fragmentedness and absence of inspiration.
Divine being was presented in the form of a diminished, castrate manner of being.
www.berdyaev.com /berdiaev/berd_lib/1916_252a.html   (7641 words)

 Divine Simplicity (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
This is the doctrine of divine simplicity (DDS).
The simplicity doctrine assays this ‘tightness’ as identity.
The problem in a nutshell is to reconcile the divine transcendence, of which DDS is an expression, with the need for some commensurability between God and creatures.
plato.stanford.edu /entries/divine-simplicity   (4778 words)

 Divine simplicity - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In theology, the doctrine of divine simplicity says that God is without parts.
Despite its apparent simplicity, this concept is recognised as raising many difficulties.
Thomas Aquinas: The Doctrine of Divine Simplicity, Michael Sudduth, Analytic Philosophy of Religion
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Divine_simplicity   (793 words)

 CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Nature and Attributes of God
And as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: but thou art the selfsame and thy years shall not fail" (Hebrews 1:10-12, Psalm 101:26-28.
Some notice, on the other hand, must be devoted to providence and to the particular aspects of providence which we call predestination and reprobation; and with a brief treatment of these which are elsewhere fully treated this article will be concluded.
But, notwithstanding this difference, the doctrine ought to be rejected, for it is opposed very plainly to the teaching of St. Paul regarding the universality of God's will to save all (1 Timothy 2:4), and from a rational point of view it is difficult to reconcile with a worthy concept of Divine justice.
www.newadvent.org /cathen/06612a.htm   (5888 words)

 Christian Metaphysics: Trinity, Incarnation and Creation
Dionysius' claims concerning the divine simplicity and ineffability are by no means unique to him; they simply represent sound Christian doctrine.
If each divine hypostasis were simply identical to the divine nature, there would not be three hypostases, but only one; thus, a hypostasis is not simply identical to the divine nature47.
If the Son were simply identical to the divine nature, then it would be impossible for the Son to assume a human nature because the attributes of the Son would in fact be incompatible with the attributes of human nature, e.g., omniscience versus limited knowing.
www.secondspring.co.uk /articles/mahoney.htm   (7393 words)

 Inward Simplicity: The Divine Center, Part II
Inward Simplicity: The Divine Center, Part II Welcome to the 2001–2002 archives of Le Penseur Réfléchit, the bi-weekly Christian living and apologetics newsletter.
Several shorter quotations from Freedom of Simplicity are worthy of mention before we venture into Part II, the balance of Inward Simplicity: The Divine Center, as well as add some commentary concerning longer passages that don’t readily yield to shorter extractions.
A life of simplicity is a life of total unity: a single focus, a single purpose, a single passion, a single vision, quest, and Object of Adoration: the single Point of Departure, the single Path to Peace, the single Destination of Desire.
www.mrrena.com /2002/Fos2.shtml   (3109 words)

 Reformation21 » Divine Impassibility
Divine impassibility is part of a web of ideas which constitute a “grammar,” a canonical way of talking about God, a way of articulating the reality of the divine fullness.
Such expressions are rooted in the immutability of the divine nature, the fact that God is unchangeable in goodness and perfection, and cannot be deterred or deflected by outside forces.
It is an inevitable expression of the divine character in a way conditioned by the necessities of being united to what is human and so localised in time and space.
www.reformation21.org /Past_Issues/October_2005_Home/Feature/94   (2819 words)

 Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.
The simplicity of God, on the contrary, is the simplicity of pure spirit, incomparably superior to that of the purest diamond, or to the unity of the most perfect organism.
Therefore divine simplicity or divine unity, is the absence of all composition and division in being, thought, and volition.
We have a glimpse of this divine simplicity when we consider the soul that has acquired a simple outlook, so that it is now able to judge of all things wisely in the light of God and to desire nothing but for His sake.
www.ewtn.com /library/THEOLOGY/PROVID.HTM   (21466 words)

Thomas's exposition of divine simplicity is integrally related to his account of whether God exists (prima pars, question 2), according to which Thomas reaches the positive conclusion that we can know that God exists (an est).
Thus Thomas embarks on the via negationis, denying of God things which are true of the creature, the core of which is the doctrine of divine simplicity.
The propositions involved in the doctrine of divine simplicity, though being essentially negative in nature, rest on the positive assertions reached under an Deus sit.
www.homestead.com /philofreligion/files/Thomas3.html   (1905 words)

 One Twig and One Leaf - Sukkot   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-12)
Simplicity, as applied to G-d, is not a dearth of qualities, but a perfection so complete that it is featureless, since every conceivable quality is but a finite and imperfect formulation of the divine perfection.
As we said, the divine simplicity is not an absence of qualities and characteristics, but, on the contrary, their liquefaction within a being that includes them all and that transcends all that defines them and distinguishes them from each other (as the number infinity--to use a most inadequate analogy--includes all finite numbers).
Creation is the process in which G-d screens His infinite simplicity, isolating finite areas within its infinite expanse that solidify as entities with a distinct existence and character.
www.chabad.org /holidays/JewishNewYear/template.asp?AID=2556   (2453 words)

In light of this tension, it is not surprising that many traditional theists have been attracted to the Augustinian view according to which Platonic universals are identical with divine concepts—that is, entities that, despite their necessary existence, are nonetheless dependent on God as thoughts are dependent on a thinker.
Of course the whole project of theistic activism is to recognize some divine activity as responsible for the existence of absolutely everything distinct from God.
Now if the doctrine of divine simplicity could be stated in such a way that it avoided this problem, that would be a significant result for contemporary discussion of the doctrine.
web.ics.purdue.edu /~bergmann/antiplatonism.htm   (8739 words)

Divine energy is the mother of creativity, and creativity is the ultimate goal of life.
The proximity to the Divine can be realized in the course of family life, without recourse to any spiritual practice.
The Divine is beyond language, be it Sanskrit, Arabic, Latin or Greek.
www.aghor.org /new/newsletter_archive/1999_01.html   (1595 words)

 Inward Simplicity: The Divine Center, Part I
In short, he counsels each person to practice simplicity within his or her means; something that shouldn’t surprise anyone familiar with Foster’s levelheaded, pragmatic approach to life.
The book I would most recommend, however, is not Freedom of Simplicity (as a whole, it doesn’t seem to have aged as well), but his classic bestseller Celebration of Discipline.
I had touched the margin of simplicity, and the effect was electrifying.
www.mrrena.com /2002/Fos1.shtml   (4107 words)

 Dionysius the Areopagite, Works (1899) vol. 2. p.1-66. The Celestial Hierarchy
For it is not possible that the supremely Divine Ray should otherwise illuminate us, except so far as it is enveloped, for the purpose of instruction, in variegated sacred veils, and arranged naturally and appropriately, for such as we are, by paternal forethought.
In like manner we say, with regard to the irrational creatures, that lust is a certain uncircumspect and earthly passionate attachment, arising incontinently from an innate movement, or intimacy in things subject to change, and the irrational supremacy of the bodily desire, which drives the whole organism towards the object of sensual inclination.
For, this is divinely fixed absolutely by the Divine source of order that, through the first, the second partake of the supremely Divine illuminations.
www.tertullian.org /fathers/areopagite_13_heavenly_hierarchy.htm   (6789 words)

 Quodlibet Online Journal: On Alvin Plantinga's Notion of the Divine Nature   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-12)
and their attempts to interpret the problems raised by the simplicity doctrine, the portion of Plantinga's argument relevant to this paper, namely, that portion dealing with the classical statement of the simplicity doctrine, is a response to Aquinas, presumably due to the latter's formulation being the most comprehensive.
From the above consideration of Aquinas, Plantinga concludes that the the sovereignty-aseity intuition is the core of the doctrine of simplicity.
Plantinga's pause and reflection evidences a need for further investigation into the underlying presuppositions and theories of both thinkers, with the hope that despite apparent language and conceptual gaps, a consensus might be achieved whereby the parts are fulfilled in their participation in the whole.
www.quodlibet.net /plantinga.shtml   (6480 words)

 Maverick Philosopher Divine Simplicity Part I
I have been invited to write an article on Divine Simplicity for the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, an outstanding online resource.
I began to think about the issue of divine simplicity once again after I was it mentioned here.
It seems to me that the thesis of divine simplicity is quite extraordinarily fruitful.
maverickphilosopher.powerblogs.com /posts/1121029142.shtml   (2789 words)

 Monotheism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
Since simplicity and other divine second-order properties supervene on his first-order properties, the latter entail the former; nothing could instantiate each of God's (real) first-order properties without instantiating such properties as simplicity.
First, the doctrine of divine simplicity is highly controversial — not all theists accept it.
It follows that if H and non-H are real but contingent properties of two divine beings, they are neither identical with nor equivalent to D. The argument from simplicity thus fails because it leaves open the possibility that two gods could be distinguished by a difference in their real contingent properties.
plato.stanford.edu /entries/monotheism   (8374 words)

 Quodlibet Online Journal: An Examination of Augustine's Application of the Triunal Nature of Human Self-consciousness ...   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-10-12)
The foundation or justification for belief in a divine triunity has generally been attributed solely to those scriptural passages which refer to the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit as God or as capable of accomplishing tasks attributable only to divinity, while at the same time maintaining distinctions of personhood among these three.
But within the simple nature of the divine, where perfect self-knowledge and perfect self-love are found, we need not exclude the ascription of substantiality to these energizings of the divine mind.
The divine Love is that which binds the Father and the Word, not in opposition to the will of either, but in perfect accord with the divine Will, for this Love is in fact to be understood as the divine Will
www.quodlibet.net /trinity.shtml   (13281 words)

 Maverick Philosopher If God is Simple, Is Creation Necessary?
So divine simplicity entails that creation is necessary." In response, one might deny that (DS) entails that there are no distinctions in God or pertaining to God.
But that more or less amounts to the statement that an object of the will (e.g., "to create") does not imply multiplicity in (or equate with the essential nature of) the faculty itself by the doctrine of divine simplicity, so one might as well just say that (1) is unsound in the first place.
I view modal monotheism and divine simplicity as mutually implying one another, and I don't see modal polytheism as a viable alternative for God.
maverickphilosopher.powerblogs.com /posts/1151114734.shtml   (4006 words)

 Fides Quaerens Intellectum » Theology
On traditional accounts of divine simplicity, the essences of all things are contained within God’s essence.
Descartes rejects the scholastics’ solution to the nature of “eternal truths” because Descartes believes they are violating the doctrine of divine simplicity in their answer.
A consistent advocate of divine simplicity seems to be committed to universal possibilism.
blog.johndepoe.com /?cat=17   (7791 words)

 The Anglican Scotist
On absolute simplicity, it is true (1)that God cannot have spatial or temporal parts distinguishable as here or there, now rather than then, (2) God cannot have any "intrinsic accidental properties", and (3), there cannot be a real distinction between real essential properties in God (354).
It seems there is "a radical diversity within divine agency itself, in that some truths about God...are not under his control, while others...are consequences of his free choice" (357).
Their caveat "we are weakening the claims basic to the doctrine of simplicity" does not refer to abandoning Aquinas' notion of AS, but rather to an attempt to render it intelligible by folding it into an account that makes use of a modern notion of necessity explicated in possible worlds semantics.
anglicanscotist.blogspot.com   (4462 words)

 Aquinas on Simpicity
St. Thomas's exposition of divine simplicity is integrally related to his account of whether God exists (prima pars, question 2), according to which Thomas reaches the positive conclusion that we can know that God exists (an est).
Not only is his existence necessary, but it is necessary through itself (not a derived necessity like that of the angels).
Alvin Plantinga understands divine simplicity (especially the claim that God is identical with his nature) to entail that different properties are not different when applied to God or that God himself is nothing but a property.
www.homestead.com /philofreligion/files/Aquinas2.htm   (1853 words)

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