God and Goodness: A Natural Theological Perspective

God and Goodness: A Natural Theological Perspective

God and Goodness: A Natural Theological Perspective

God and Goodness: A Natural Theological Perspective


God and Goodness , takes the experience of value, in moral and aesthetic contexts, as a starting point for natural theology. The book seeks to respond to contemporary indifference to religious questions by representing religious commitment as a natural extension of our value commitments in other spheres.


I would like to thank Brian Davies and Richard Swinburne who first introduced me to the philosophy of religion as an academic discipline. This work combines an interest in modern formulations of the argument from design with a desire to accommodate certain mediaeval intuitions concerning the divine nature. My debt to them (my Demea and my Cleanthes) in these respects will be evident to anyone who knows their work.

I am also profoundly indebted to Peter Byrne for his extraordinary generosity. Without his encouragement this book would never have been written. And without his patient and insightful readings of numberless drafts, it would not be half the book it is. I would also like to thank William Hasker, the Routledge reader, whose penetrating comments on an earlier draft persuaded me of the need to make the significant changes which have resulted in the current Chapter 2. Lastly, I am greatly indebted to the Gifford Committee of the University of Glasgow, and to Lord Gifford himself, since this work was largely written in 1997 during my time as the Gifford Research Fellow in Natural Theology and Philosophy at the University of Glasgow. My thanks in particular to Alexander Broadie, Joe Houston, Joel Marcus and Edmund Cusick for their keen interest in my work during my year in Glasgow.

On a personal note, I am very grateful to my colleagues at Australian Catholic University, who have provided a most supportive, and caffeine-rich, working environment. And above all, I would like to thank my family, especially my wife, Kate, whose love and friendship have helped me to feel at home in Australia, and my family of origin, Mum and Dad, Robert and Gerard, together with Sarah and Vanya, whose nurture first conveyed to me a sense of the goodness of the world.

Mark Wynn

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