Plantinga’s epistemic externalism and the problem of divine hiddenness in theism: Knowledge about god as a warranted knowledge

Samuel Vincenzo Jonathan, Herdito Sandi Pratama

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

Abstract

Divine hiddenness is an argument presented by J. L. Schellenberg in one of his trilogies, The Wisdom to Doubt (2004), as an atheology that argues about the existence of God. In brief, Schellenberg questions; if God really exists, then, why does He not give a clearer evidence for humans? Stated y a proposition: (1) NN has the knowledge of God’s existence if the knowledge is based on one or a collection of evidence; (2) However, there is no collection or one evidence of God or God’s existence; (3) Therefore, NN does not have the knowledge about God. Divine hiddenness presents the problem in two dimensions simultaneously in the philosophy of religion, or the existence of God, namely (1) the epistemic dimension and (2) the ontological dimension. This chapter will specifically address the problem in the first dimension, which is the epistemic dimension, with the question; whether the belief in God is permitted for the knower in His hiddenness or in the absence of evidence of His existence. Through conceptual distinction, I will differentiate two perspectives of justification concerning the knowledge about God, and then, compare those two perspectives, internalism and externalism theory. I will point out that in externalism, especially in this chapter, Plantinga’s externalism, the hiddenness, or the absence of evidence, is not a problem for a knower to have a warranted knowledge about God, because fundamentally, God is not as hidden as humans think, and in fact, human’s cognitive faculty has the cognitive ability to understand the knowledge about God. Knowledge about God is not obtained through the epistemic work or any evidence that is given by the knower but rather obtained through the functioning of the proper cognitive faculty. Therefore, divine hiddenness, as an atheology, is not a problem for any theist to have a warranted belief about God.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPhilosophy and the Everyday Lives
PublisherNova Science Publishers, Inc.
Pages167-187
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781536192193
Publication statusPublished - 9 Feb 2021

Keywords

  • Divine hiddenness
  • Internalism
  • Plantinga’s externalism
  • Theism
  • Warrantedness

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