Saturday, April 7, 2018

Comments at “Divine Causality and Human Freedom”

Comments at "Divine Causality and Human Freedom"

[Comment 1]


1. In part true, but incomplete. God **also** causes and sustains the Willful Seat of the Agent, as in the Volitional Seat of the Self, in addition to “the rest” of all that sums to “Self”.

2. Proportionate Causality gets us there — to what is in part the Imago Dei.

3. With that irreducible seat well in hand, it is not only logically possible but also theologically lucid that God *can* and *does* create that Seat — that little i-am — first outside of Eden and, then placing him in Eden, he (man) awakes to find himself between actual (Ontic) possible worlds (...Tree/Privation... Tree/Eternal Idea... etc...).

4. But that is nothing more than movement amid Self/Other (...Man/God...).

5. From that “locus” forward, then, the critic of free will must blindly foist (...and redefine God...) that whatever the Self there chose was determined not by the seat of the Volitional Seat — not by the i-am — but by the array of rationally perceived X’s within which said Self swims.

6. That is unjustifiable short of redefining the Imago Dei — that i-am — and thereby *God* as well.

[Comment 2]


@ “AnonymousMarch 14, 2018 at 1:50 PM
@meta Christianity, I wouldn't necessarily argue that external influences to the "volitional seat" ....”

That approach redefines both God & the Imago Dei. One must redine and then assert:

[1] ...the Capacity for actual (ontic) choice is illusory in God — and therefore in that i-am described earlier with respect to the Imago Dei...

[2] ...something other than the actually (ontic) rational constitutes God — and therefore perception both in and of the nature of said i-am described earlier with respect to the Imago Dei...

[3] ...something other than the actually (ontic) rational constitutes all which said i-am swims within — and therefore perception both in and of the nature of said i-am described earlier with respect to the Imago Dei...

The Hard Stop is not I-Feel nor I-See nor I-Want (...and etc...) but in fact the express and irreducible Seat that *is* (ontic) the i-am.

As briefly described earlier the principal of Proportionate Causality gets us “there”. Further, that such proportion is metaphysically necessary (...on pains of circularity & illusory &...) we find that it is God and God alone Who both creates and sustains our very Self.

All syntax must survive all references to “the Edenic” and what comes after (...outside of...) Eden is necessarily distinct, but those distinctions cannot redefine “the Edenic / the Adamic” as if those more distal, downstream facts somehow expunge the Metanarrative’s more proximal, upstream facts.

As per http://disq.us/p/1n9rf6h we find that if In Fact as per Ontic-Fact the Edenic Adamic is free to do *otherwise* then in fact that *otherwise* cannot sum to Ontic Non-Entity nor can it sum to a kind of Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being. In fact God / Omnipotence cannot create a being that is in fact free to do Non-Entity or free to do Non-Being. Any epistemic which cannot contain Eden and Eden's possible worlds has, from the start, a suspicious ontic already in jeopardy (... http://disq.us/p/1n166pv ...).

[Comment 3]


“...An act of the will is determined by the strongest desire presented to it. So desires are part of the chain, that, if changed, changes the later links in the chain...”

There is no chain there.

Only Desire Full Stop.

You are doing nothing more (...there at least...) than attempting to cram the metaphysic of the Divine Mind into cascading reverberations of nature’s four fundamental forces. That’s why you keep floating those sorts of muddied premises.

[Comment 4]


@ “...AnonymousMarch 17, 2018 at 1:13 AM
@Metachristianity, "It is God and God alone who creates and sustains our very self". Exactly. Of that proposition is correct....”

And the Self which He he creates and sustains is (...as described...and which you did not address...) “In Fact” free to do otherwise.... (...as per the earlier comment...).

All of which you left out.

But perhaps one must leave out — in order to redefine — the Imago Dei.

You’re in the unfortunate position of having to defend an untenable premise: The irreducibly Intentional, the wellspring of all ontic possibility —God — cannot Himself ground the ontic of the Intentional Imago Dei and, also, that same Ground — irreducible substratum — of Intentionality cannot Himself ground that category of said Seat, that rational i-am amid actual (ontic) options.

The Ground of X can ground X. As with Carrier, so too here: to claim that Man is not free in the same sense as the Necessary Being is fine. Welcome to Christianity. But to *equate* that distinction to the reductio of the aforementioned “cannot’s” is a false identity claim easily and rationally rejected.

The “cannot” lurking beneath the surface must be retained in order to defeat the aforementioned “In Fact” in the earlier comment, and that then — to push through to a coherent metaphysical terminus — must redefine God.

[Comment 5]


“....It seems that this amounts to saying the explanation for the agent's free choice is the agent's free choice, which is circular....”

Not when irreducible intentionality (...God...) begins and ends the means and ends of Imago Dei. It is circular **without** that A and that Z. See my reply to Anon from a few minutes ago.

Also, conflating Forknowing with Causing is that **same** error all over again — but dressed up in a different set of clothes. Worse, within all of that there is a layer where you again equate the Divine Mind (...Foreknowing...) to some sort of Time & Tensed chain of events / parts.

Repeating the same re-definitions of X doesn’t make X more “Christian”.

[Comment 6]

1. So much anger.

2. So little logic beyond the initial premise.

3. So much re-defining X into Non-X.

4. So much arguing as if X = Non-X.

5. Cosmic Fairness? Cosmic Kindness? **IS** (ontic) that a Truth-Metric?

If “No” then see 1, 2, 3, and 4.

If “Yes” then see https://www.metachristianity.com/heaven-hell-cosmic-fairness-ethic-love/

[Comment 7]

X's are "...part of the chain..."

And one link "determines" all of them, per your premise. That link being "the strongest desire". So there is only one link with one outcome, and it is [A] Strongest Desire and [B] Determines and [C] Action.

That's fine for a Non-Christian Metaphysic laced with your own re-definitions of what the term "Divine Mind" and "Proportionate Causality" in fact referent.

Perhaps you've read, but you have not addressed, both of these in this thread.... well... let's say that nothing you've said so far has addressed ANY of it:

[1] http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521217582713#c5042351310418274272 and also

[2] http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521423322095#c1198496849158473909

[Comment 8]


“...if he chose X instead... then that world would be a different world...”

Worlds with options bother you. We get that. Because God with options bothers you too.

All you achieve in denying actual (ontic) options and the irreducibly intentional Seat of the rational Self is achieved by 1. expunging the half of reality which fails to comport with your unjustified metaphysic, 2. redefining God, 3. jettisoning proportionate causality, and 4. removing the A and the Z which coherently ground all which you’re forever trying to redefine.

Your redefining is also a bit lopsided when it comes to https://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521477716890&m=1#c7549848012944119511

[Comments 9, 10, 11, 12]


@ Anonymous March 18, 2018 at 11:30 PM @Metachristianity: “….you seem to be saying that God cannot be other than what he is. I agree. You also seem to say that humans may not have as much power as God, but such a fact doesn't necessarily mean that humans don't have power in other respects. The problem is this: if God has foreknowledge of what humans will do, they cannot act otherwise….”

That raises an interesting point IMO. To play this safe I’m going to put this into four comments as one never quite knows where the character count thing-y may get a bit fussy :-}

Part 1: with respect to “@ Anonymous March 18, 2018 at 11:30 PM”

The point of contact is not about this or that X being “as-much-as” and/or “not-as-much-as”, but, rather, it is the fact that it is …just as irreducible as…. With respect to The Good there is in the Imago Dei (…and so on…) that which is (ontic) in fact Good. Recall the A and the Z where all vectors start, and, recall that we are talking about Ontic Freedom amid Ontic Options. One must "carry through" to the *actual* terminus, whether such be, say, Reason Itself and/or, say, Irreducible Intentionality and/or, say, the Good – and so on all the way downstream/upstream to that which some reference as The Always and The Already (...and so on...) as in "God".

The ground of all such contingent rock-bottoms is that Necessary Rock Bottom (...also, in addition, it is the case that Proportionate Causality is concurrent with all such interfaces of Contingent/Necessary...).

To grant the A.T-Meta arena "that grounding" (...and etc...) as "work-able", so to speak, when it comes to the term "Good" both in God and in the Contingent Being, but then try to hold something back when it comes to any OTHER contour of Divine Simplicity, well that just won't do.

Why? Because that “withholding all X’s other than ‘Good’”, so to speak, breaks down into a body of premises claiming that the Irreducible Ground of X cannot create and sustain X, and, then, from there, we keep going and follow through → → as that amounts to a blind foist ending in a reductio along the lines of, say, that because Man is not Free in the same sense as God then in fact Man is *Determined*. And, then, again, we → → keep going as that is in turn a reductio along the lines of the referent of Good and asserting that in fact Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good. The problem becomes all too obvious:

[A] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good]
[B] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) freedom & (ontic) options]

But, given the Christian metaphysic and given the A.T-Meta vectors in play here, that “unpacking-from-A-to-Z”, so to speak, about “Good” ends up as a crisp logical impossibility. As with Good, so too with Any Contour of the Divine vis-à-vis the A and the Z and, also, vis-à-vis the terms Create, Sustain, Imago Dei, Proportionate Causality, Seat, Substratum, Ontic, and so on down (or up) the proverbial ontic line.

Continued in the next comment…. → →

Part 2: with respect to “@ Anonymous March 18, 2018 at 11:30 PM”

“….It doesn't matter if his perspective is atemporal, he still knows the exact details of what he creates….”

That only shows that God foreknew what the rationally free Seat of the Self would choose, not that He caused said choice. In other words, that fact does not (…because it cannot…) somehow dissolve the aforementioned crisp logical impossibility.

As stated by another in this thread, “If God is outside of time, and gets his knowledge from seeing what you actually did, then it's difficult to see that this knowledge could harm your freedom at all.” That is too kind as it does not demand a full accounting and can therefore be modified to this: God is outside of time and gets his knowledge from seeing what that Seat of the Self that is the created i-am (…see http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521049171664#c9124817410769450797 …) actually did/do/will do, and that knowledge forces no harm to freedom at all.

Another inroad:

It is the case that “the Adamic” is rationally free in Eden, yet can sin, and, also, it is the case that should he freely choose to eat of, enter into, be one with, Eternal Life, then in fact Man either 1. Can but does not sin (…think of the Luciferian Heaven for similarities and differences…) or else 2. Man cannot sin (…again reference the Luciferian Heaven for similarities and differences…).

Now, that seems to bother some folks on the “degree-of-freedom” in Eden vs. Heaven vs. Privation. And there it is. Three different metaphysical topographies, or, three different contents, and what do we find? Well we find that none of them somehow dissolve the aforementioned crisp logical impossibility. The rational Seat of the Self stands in Heaven or in Eden and it cannot change that, and that holds whether we speak of the Luciferian Heaven or of the Adamic Heaven, as they are not the same – the former not created in and by and of the syntax of Wedding, Bride, Groom (…and so on…) – yet the later of course is created via just such a Blueprint (…more on that in a bit…).

As in:

Continued in the next comment…. → →

Part 3: with respect to “@ Anonymous March 18, 2018 at 11:30 PM”

As in:

[1] It would be a metaphysical absurdity for God to desire a logical impossibility. God desires that all things Adamic be redeemed. Clearly that is necessarily possible. Enter the syntax of Bride and Groom, of Proposal, of Wedding: The key is the *difference* in [A] the metaphysical content of Love's Proposal as compared to [B] the metaphysical content of Love's Wedding. The means and ends of all things Edenic and also of Privation (...both constitute Proposal...) are a radically different category than we find in Wedding. That is unpacked a bit at http://disq.us/p/1hbm03p (..or else at https://randalrauser.com/2017/03/god-exploit-individuals-benefit-others/#comment-3224209669 …).

[2] The Syntax of Bride & Groom:

D. B. Hart and many other theologians in various ways allude to the Trinitarian Life with referents such as the “...eternal one-another...” in mapping reality’s concrete furniture in and by Being Itself / God. We arrive necessarily in a discussion of nothing less than Ontology, Heavy Meta(physics), Knowledge, and Divine Communique as all Necessary Transcendentals stream from the metaphysical wellspring of all ontological possibility – from the Trinitarian Life vis-à-vis reality’s only Blueprint for love's timeless reciprocity vis-à-vis Self/Other – termed Imago Dei.

Given the Blueprint of Imago Dei we cannot equate the necessary landscape of Eden (...love's Proposal...) to the necessary landscape of God's Eternal Ideal for the Adamic (...love's Wedding...). Given the arena of Community, of Trinity, that “…eternal one-another…”, of love’s self-giving, of Self/Other (…and so on….), it is the case that “IF” God should Decree and fashion the Imago Dei, “THEN” there can be no such reality as the creation of the “freely-already-married” and, therein, we begin to discover the (…excuse the syntax…), well, let’s call it the unavoidable-ness-of-the-Edenic given said Decree, said Blueprint, and, we also begin to discover that love’s Proposals are not the same as Weddings, and, just as important, we also discover that the content and yield which is circumscribed by Eden (...love's Proposal...) is fundamentally different and distinct than the content and yield which is circumscribed by God's Eternal Ideal for the Adamic (...love's Wedding...), and, for all the same reasons, Weddings are not the same as Gestations, neither in content nor in yield, and, also, Gestations are not the same as Birth as such relates to the Door into God’s Eternal Ideal, a Door which faces outward from *both* within Eden *and* from within Privation.

It is unavoidable: Should God decree the Imago Dei then…..

Continued in the next comment…. → →

Part 4: with respect to “@ Anonymous March 18, 2018 at 11:30 PM”

It is unavoidable: Should God decree the Imago Dei then:

[A] “Creating Man In Heaven From The Get Go” is a logical impossibility

…and…

[B] It necessarily the case that the Freedom of the Edenic is “In Fact” free. That bolded “in fact” is a specific reference to that aforementioned crisp logical impossibility and, also, it references that same phrase in http://disq.us/p/1n9rf6h where we (briefly) discuss that if In Fact as per Ontic-Fact the Edenic Adamic is free to do *otherwise* (…and we find that he is given the A and Z in play…) then in fact that *otherwise* cannot sum to Ontic Non-Entity nor can it sum to a kind of Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being. In fact God / Omnipotence cannot create a being that is in fact free to do Non-Entity or free to do Non-Being. Any epistemic which cannot contain Eden and Eden's possible worlds has, from the start, a suspicious ontic already in jeopardy (... http://disq.us/p/1n166pv ...).

It is the Christian metaphysic alone which solves the riddle of Freedom, Proposal, Wedding, and Irreducibility as the necessary transcendentals retain lucidity “through and through from A to Z” (…we rationally reject the reductio of that “crisp logical impossibility” mentioned earlier…).

How is it the Christian metaphysic? The Trinitarian Life alone provides the metaphysic whereby what is impossible for all other paradigms is in fact possible: The irreducible Ontic Options amid the irreducible Self/Other give us the only Blueprint which supplies the necessary transcendentals as we find that, given 1. the ontic of the Necessary and 2. the ontic of the Contingent and 3. the Decree of said Blueprint, it is necessarily the case that there be that ontic-seam where Proposal actualizes and also that there be that ontic-seam where Proposal gives way to Wedding → →

In all of this we come upon the A and Z of reason and upon love's timeless reciprocity and upon the moral landscape as the eternal Processions of the Trinitarian Life, of the triune God and no other, provides us with the following ontology:

The irreducibly rational just is seamless with the irreducibly moral even as the moral just is seamless with love’s indestructible self-giving — which is itself seamless with the Divine Mind — which is itself seamless with infinite consciousness – which compels us into an Adamic landscape wherein the perfection of reason just is the perfection of consciousness, which just is the perfection of love, which just is the perfection of being.

The Trinitarian Life alone provides the metaphysic whereby the riddle which no other paradigm can solve is in fact carried through to lucidity: Should such Living Water (freely) pour – quench – fill – incarnate – then whether in Eden or in Privation a mutable and contingent being termed “Man” finds (….having (freely) drank from such a Cup…having (freely) married…) that wherever he shall then look, that is to say, wherever he shall motion, whether beneath his feet, or above his head, or into his own chest, he will find that beautiful Freedom called Permanence.

[Comment 13]


“…I'm not talking about the metaphysical contours of being (the fact that you can't square a circle, for example)…”

Then the premises which your argument employs grant the rational Seat of the Edenic and you are left with an epistemic which cannot contain it (…you seem to allow only some sort of “part” of that which is ‘post-Edenic’ in your metaphysic …or what you take to be such…). Things seem to get worse from there in that your premises – when pushed through – in fact argue that said Seat of that i-am in fact *is* (irreducible / ontic) found experiencing a kind of Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being. It is “The Edenic” and it is “The Adamic” therein, which, so far, your epistemic jettisons and it is that which, if we push through to the end, in fact redefines God (…recall that Adam is not deceived…). Ontic Noble Lies told by the Necessary Being just won't do.

“….I'm talking about the combination of experiences and opinions formed within the mind of the creature he creates. He creates the experience of the human and therefore knows what the human will be thinking and how it will respond…”

See above and also see another comment in this thread which addresses that as well at – http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521217582713#c5042351310418274272

“…You also seem to say that God can't make us love him without free will. I would say that if he is goodness itself, we should be drawn through compulsion (not coercion) to God….”

If compulsion permits can-be-otherwise (actual / ontic) then it is not coercion, and, if it does not, then, at the end of the line it sums to (actual / ontic) coercion.

“….You would be right in saying that God cannot use coercive force to make us love him. But he CAN beget his essential nature in a way that would make us all want to be with him….”

That is half right and half mistaken in that it bypasses what cannot be bypassed IF the Decree, or Will, is the Imago Dei. Why? Well because of Freedom in the Blueprint – and therein we come upon the topic of the metaphysical landscape (…and content / yield…) of “Proposal” there amid that topography of Self and Other (…in this case God and Man, etc…). That content is necessarily actualized and, also, it is only half of the Blueprint, the other half being the topic of the metaphysical landscape (…and content / yield…) of “Wedding” there amid that topography of Self and Other.

In short, the last locus of “…beget His essential nature in a way that….” is a half-narrative as per the brief discussion above in “Part 3” and “Part 4” in those four replies. All syntax must survive all references to “the Edenic” and “the Adamic” and what comes after (...outside of...) Eden is necessarily distinct, but those distinctions cannot redefine “the Edenic / the Adamic” as if those more distal, downstream facts somehow expunge the Metanarrative’s more proximal, upstream facts.

It is the entire Metanarrative which does the heavy lifting. So far the premises behind your argument are in part misguided in that they are being informed by a half-narrative.

[Comment 14]


@ "AnonymousMarch 20, 2018 at 11:38 AM
@ Greg:in regards to calvinism, I don't think they necessarily think humans don't initially..."

You stated, "Moreover, if he was omniscient, wouldn't he know what extreme suffering was like, and therefore realize it was bad?"

That question is given in the context of you granting Can-Do-Otherwise Free Will there in "The Edenic / Adamic" and, then, it moves to condemn that freedom of the Self with respect to love's movements amid Other. If said Freedom amid the proverbial (wedding) Proposal (...not to be conflated for the actual 'wedding'...) is Evil then you've a point. But if said Freedom is a slice of The Good well then you've only tossed in a few contradictions and self-negations.

Also → for context →

[1] https://twitter.com/M_Christianity/status/975922908626374657

[2] https://twitter.com/M_Christianity/status/975930976055513088

[3] http://disq.us/p/1r3kng9

[4] Labeling Love as Asinine:

1. http://disq.us/p/1n1498f
2. http://disq.us/p/1n14ewi
3. http://disq.us/p/1n182nj
4. http://disq.us/p/1nr81ym

[Comment 15]


@ “AnonymousMarch 21, 2018 at 2:07 AM
You seem to be saying that God cannot (or will not) set in stone every detail of the character of the volitional seat,...”

“…This implies that he has limits in what he can create, to an extent where the world which he creates is the only one he can create…”

See #3 and #4 of the four replies. God cannot create the Freely-Already-Married. There is One God and in many ways there is, then, One Imago Dei especially given the Trinity as reality’s only Blueprint of love’s free, rational, and complete reciprocity amid Self/Other. It’s fine to expand the forms that can take but not at the expense of Scripture’s metanarrative. The World as it is comports with Scripture and redefining, forcing reductios, and so on just won’t do.

You’re claiming an impossibility: God can bypass irreducible Freedom (…the “Edenic“…) and yet have a free and rational reciprocity amid the Contingent/Necessary *AND* you’re *equating* with something akin to [Eden] = [Eternal Life] and/or [Eden] = [Privation/Fall].

That is half right and half mistaken in that it bypasses what cannot be bypassed *IF* the Decree, or Will, is the Imago Dei. Why? Well because of Freedom in the Blueprint – and therein we come upon the topic of the metaphysical landscape (…and content / yield…) of “Proposal” there amid that topography of Self and Other (…in this case God and Man, etc…). That content is necessarily actualized and, also, it is only half of the Blueprint, the other half being the topic of the metaphysical landscape (…and content / yield…) of “Wedding” there amid that topography of Self and Other.

“….Also, his foreknowledge invalidates free will. It doesn't matter if it is simultaneous with our act, it is still causally prior…”

It is only by redefining the Triune God (…Imago Dei…) that you can justify your premise that God cannot create, ground, and sustain the irreducibly free vis-à-vis the Edenic (…which is not the Wedding nor is it Privation nor was Adam deceived…). See http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521563955815&m=1#c3820421684415648117

Why? Because you are slipping back into that crisp logical impossibility of employing (…in that *cannot*…) premises which assert the following:

[A] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good]
[B] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) freedom & (ontic) options]

As in http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521563514113&m=1#c6285788121969199622

If compulsion permits can-be-otherwise (actual / ontic) then it is not coercion, and, if it does not, then, at the end of the line it sums to (actual / ontic) coercion.

“….He still creates the seat. He still makes its sinful nature occur….”

You’re again redefining the Edenic and the Adamic by asserting that Adam was deceived. He wasn’t. You’re left asserting the irrational-adam and, just as bad, you try to get there by some sort of category of the Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being.

You’re also *equating* A to Non-A. But that won’t push through in the end because:

[Pre-Eden] is not [Eden] is not [Eternal Life]
[Pre-Eden] is not [Eden] is not [Privation]

[Comments 16, 17, 18]


@ “Anonymous March 21, 2018 at 4:40 AM…”

I’ll go through the parts of your reply in steps:

Step 1 of 3:

“….Your arguments seem to imply that…. without the ability to act otherwise in response to God's love, our reciprocal love is not genuine…”

That is false given the content and yield of the “Wedding” (…Eternal Life, God’s eternal Ideal for the Adamic…) which is different than the content and yield of the “Proposal” (…found in both Eden and Privation, though Eden is not identical to Privation….).

Your assumption is the result of a slide back into a body of premises which – with respect to content and yield – forgets the following:

[Pre-Eden] is not [Eden] is not [Eternal Life]
[Pre-Eden] is not [Eden] is not [Privation]

A few nuances here:

Genuine love is Trinity and the Triune is not a monochromatic, one dimensional monologue. *IF* the Blueprint of the Imago Dei is the Triune *THEN* ….as per previous comments. Therefore, given the Contingent Being, [Proposal] there amid Self/Other (so to speak) is both necessary and also less than the whole (…less than the Bride/Groom syntax of Wedding…etc…). Genuine love necessitates something different than what you are describing (…a monochromatic one dimensional monologue…). Yes, other worlds are possible, and, also, we can even say that other manifestations of Imago Dei (…or I.D… ) are properly embraced, but, what we cannot do is offer [I.D. minus Necessary X’s], as it were, and then just tack on “genuine”. We must instead move either laterally or upward. Not into “less-and-less”.

“….in response to this, I would ask, is the acting otherwise merely a possible world….”

“Acting Otherwise” is a Possible World given the Christian metaphysic just as it is not the only possible world – again given the Christian metaphysic.

“…or is it an actual possibility within the actual world that is created….”

Because “Acting Otherwise” is a Possible World, and because of the Imago Dei vis-a-vis the Blueprint at hand, it is, in this world, an actual possibility. We can take that further with a bit of tedious, but precise, work: Given the radical ontic-change observed as we move amid [Pre-Eden (where Man is created)] and [Eden (where Man is later placed)] and [Eternal Life (again the radical ontic-difference segue)] and [Privation (again the radical ontic-difference segue)] we find that God can, and does, create such topography as/with/by ONE created topography. It’s a bit uncanny but one can offer the world (Tree? Door?) of the I/Self amid the world of the Thy/Other (Tree? Door?) amid the world of Unicity or Us/Singularity (Man’s true good, his final felicity, to borrow a phrase from Bishop Robert Barron).

The following has been stated several times already (…see http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521217582713#c5042351310418274272 for example…) → →

If In Fact as per Ontic-Fact the Edenic Adamic is free to do *otherwise* then in fact that *otherwise* cannot sum to Ontic Non-Entity nor can it sum to a kind of Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being. In fact God / Omnipotence cannot create a being that is in fact free to do Non-Entity or free to do Non-Being. Any epistemic which cannot contain Eden and Eden's possible worlds has, from the start, a suspicious ontic already in jeopardy (... http://disq.us/p/1n166pv ...).

Continued in the next comment…..

@ “AnonymousMarch 21, 2018 at 4:40 AM…”

Step 2 of 3:

“….either God creates an agent which he knows the contours of, and not the exact actions of, or that God can only actualize certain creatures in any given world (a bit like William Lane Craigs Molinism, in regards to counterfactuals) ….”

We both, and WLC, reject Open Theism and, also, God knows the proverbial A-Z (…the exact…). No harm to freedom is found in foreknowledge and the, well, the [Free Act of Pointing At Foreknowledge] is not a solvent capable of granting that crisp logical impossibility of the following premises which it seems your premises cannot get free of:

[A] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good]
[B] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) freedom & (ontic) options]

(….see the last part of http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521563514113#c6285788121969199622 for that etc.….)

“….it does not explain why God cannot create a world in which all creatures come to love him….”

Defining love again → It depends on how you define love → See Part 1 and “genuine love” → Given Trinity and the necessary transcendentals which stream from that “…metaphysical wellspring of all ontic possibility….” the free giving of the Self (…Other and not Self…) is unavoidable. No paradigm solves “Privation In The Necessary” – whereas – in the Triune all procession into Self is rationally affirmed as Fully Good and Fully God vis-à-vis the Great I AM. But that is the Triune God (…and no other…), whereas, it is a logical impossibility for any Contingent Being to freely motion thusly (…Self and not Other…) and find Life vis-à-vis Wholeness. It’s uncanny but *IF* the Blueprint is the Triune *THEN* the Edenic emerges as necessary.

Further, it again depends on how you define love → There are TWO universalisms, so to speak, as per http://disq.us/p/1hbm03p Given the Decree / Blueprint at hand it is clear that Universalism is necessarily possible given the volitional nature of love (…think of Eden… Proposal… etc…), and, just the same, Universalism is not necessarily actualized, again given the volitional nature of love (...as per http://disq.us/p/1gze7kv …).

Perhaps Freedom amid Self/Other is asinine, or evil, or *not* a slice of The Good, but, there is no evidence in the real World as it actually is nor in the Christian’s Trinitarian metaphysic which affirms that.

Continued in the next comment…..

@ “AnonymousMarch 21, 2018 at 4:40 AM…”

Step 3 of 3:

“….Does a world in which creatures are threatened with hellfire seem any more likely to create genuine love from said creatures, than a world in which they are simply compelled by God's excellence….”

See Part 1 and Part 2. Genuine love? Perhaps Freedom amid Self/Other is asinine, or evil, or *not* a slice of The Good, but, there is no evidence in the real World as it actually is nor in the Christian’s Trinitarian metaphysic which affirms that. As for hellfire, well if hell bothers you, then you’ve limited options vis-à-vis Cosmic Fairness (…see https://www.metachristianity.com/heaven-hell-cosmic-fairness-ethic-love/ …).

“….I don't think the wedding analogy you use is really relevant. In any relationship, people are drawn to it by being compelled by certain aspects of their partners character. They cannot choose out of thin air, as that would be non sensical…”

Of course we don’t choose out of thin air. First, the alternative of an Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being doesn’t push through for obvious reasons. Second, perhaps an excerpt from http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521623496087#c222832849458534 with concerns about a supposed infinite regress and/or out-of-thin-air, as you say:

Begin excerpt:

"...fail to prove why A and not B was chosen..."

"...but then infinite regress..."

Okay. If in Man: Tell us, in that regress, does it land within the Time and Tensed? Within the Contingent? If so then the Contingent stands On-Its-Own in Midair.

If in God: Recall in the other thread,

"Apparently Divine Simplicity, void of Parts, has an infinite (...Time? ...Tensed?...) regress. And in 7 Days Counter Rebel is going to show us why and how that is the case." (... http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/carrier-carries-on.html?showComment=1520713400882#c2948821343992655379 ...).

Still waiting.

End excerpt.

Perhaps an excerpt from http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521427150286#c2757358987556742691 with:

Begin excerpt:

“....It seems that this amounts to saying the explanation for the agent's free choice is the agent's free choice, which is circular....”

Not when irreducible intentionality (...God...) begins and ends the means and ends of Imago Dei. It is circular **without** that A and that Z…… conflating Foreknowing with Causing is that **same** error all over again — but dressed up in a different set of clothes. Worse, within all of that there is a layer where you again equate the Divine Mind (...Foreknowing...) to some sort of Time & Tensed chain of events / parts.

End excerpt.

There is no thin-air nor infinite regress in I.D. (…Imago Dei…). Why? Because one can only claim such a thing by re-defining the Divine Mind, or Divine Simplicity, or God, or Being Itself… and so on.

Postscript:

Given that there is no such possibility of that infinite regress nor out-of-thin-air, that is to say given the Christian metaphysic vis-à-vis *God*, we again can affirm that the following is an untenable premise:

The irreducibly Intentional, the wellspring of all ontic possibility —God — cannot Himself ground the ontic of the Intentional Imago Dei and, also, that same Ground — irreducible substratum — of Intentionality cannot Himself ground that category of said Seat, that rational i-am amid actual (ontic) options.

That is untenable, and, going further, we find that the Ground of X can ground X. As with Carrier, so too here: to claim that Man is not free in the same sense as the Necessary Being is fine. Welcome to Christianity. But to *equate* that distinction to the reductio of the aforementioned “cannot’s” is a false identity claim which is rationally rejected.

[Comment 19]


It's actually easy to explain. One simply must "carry through" to the the **actual** terminus, whether such be, say, Reason Itself and/or, say, Irreducible Intentionality and/or, say, that which some reference as The Always and The Already (...and so on...) as in "God".

The ground of all such contingent rock-bottoms is that Necessary Rock Bottom (...also, in addition, it is the case that Proportionate Causality is concurrent with all such interfaces of Contingent/Necessary...).

To grant the A.T-Meta arena "that grounding" (...and etc...) as "work-able", so to speak, when it comes to the term "Good" but then try to hold something back when it comes to any OTHER contour of Divine Simplicity, well that just won't do, and that leads to the collapse of A into B.

In short, the collapse comes because one is not addressing the **Christian** Metaphysic.

[Comment 20]

You're begging the question when you're asked to differentiate good reasons from bad reasons. Cosmic Indifference there amid Nature's Four Fundamental Forces (...or whatever your explanatory terminus is...) is forced to question-beg within the arena of The Good over in the Moral arena and, so too here within the arena of The Rational, and, so too within the arena of Reason Itself.

You don't seem willing to follow through both upstream and downstream. It's easier to respect the honesty of the likes of Sean Carroll here as he's at least willing to embrace "the finally illusory" and concede, eventually, a kind of... anemic sort of well... it's kind of enough... to sort of get by on (...akin to Harris and "...I choose but I do not choose what I choose..." which redefines and begs the question all at once...). Good Reasons and Bad Reasons is the same show all over again.

Regarding said Upstream/Downstream, see "Part 4" at http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521563955815#c3820421684415648117

The Divine Mind presses in despite the fact that your premises either expunge it, redefine it, or avoid it. It is there that we find Non-Theism's question begging with respect to The Good / Moral to be *identical* to the question begging in The Rational.

Whereas, with respect to that Upstream/Downstream A - Z, the irreducibly rational just is seamless with the irreducibly moral even as the moral just is seamless with love’s indestructible self-giving — which is itself seamless with the Divine Mind — which is itself seamless with infinite consciousness – which compels us into an Adamic landscape wherein the perfection of reason just is the perfection of consciousness, which just is the perfection of love, which just is the perfection of being.

You're re-defining and pretending you're not.

[Comment 21]

Your comments merely redefine God and then argue against your redefined (non)Christian topography.

You’re claiming that the Irreducible Ground of X cannot create and sustain X. That amounts to a blind foist ending in a reductio along the lines of, say, that because Man is not Free in the same sense as God then in fact Man is Determined.

That is a reductio along the lines of the referent of Good and asserting that in fact Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good.

You’ve redefined.

Redefining the Christian metaphysic and then repeating it over and over does not make the redefinition more “Christian”.

The reductio alluded to there unpacks along the lines of these:

1. https://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521477716890&m=1#c7549848012944119511

2. https://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521423322095&m=1#c1198496849158473909

[Comment 22]

"...why A and not B was chosen..."

"...but then infinite regress..."

Okay. If in Man: Tell us, in that regress, does it land within the Time and Tensed? Within the Contingent? If so then the Contingent stands On-Its-Own in Midair.

If in God: Recall in the other thread,

"Apparently Divine Simplicity, void of Parts, has an infinite (...Time? ...Tensed?...) regress. And in 7 Days Counter Rebel is going to show us why and how that is the case." (... http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/carrier-carries-on.html?showComment=1520713400882#c2948821343992655379 ...).

Still waiting.

So far, with respect to the Contingent Being, you've invented a body of logical impossibilities as you hit your Full-Stop there within the Contingent being. With respect to God you foist some sort of "cloud" full of "parts" and full of "chain reactions" apparently Timed and Tensed as well.

The ground of all such contingent rock-bottoms is that Necessary Rock Bottom (...also, in addition, it is the case that Proportionate Causality is concurrent with all such interfaces of Contingent/Necessary...).

To grant the A.T-Meta arena "that grounding" (...and etc...) as "work-able", so to speak, when it comes to the term "Good" both in God and in the Contingent Being, but then try to hold something back when it comes to any OTHER contour of Divine Simplicity, well that just won't do.

Why? Because that “withholding all X’s other than ‘Good’”, so to speak, breaks down into a body of premises claiming that the Irreducible Ground of X cannot create and sustain X, and, then, from there, we keep going and follow through → → as that amounts to a blind foist ending in a reductio along the lines of, say, that because Man is not Free in the same sense as God then in fact Man is *Determined*. And, then, again, we → → keep going as that is in turn a reductio along the lines of the referent of Good and asserting that in fact Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good. The problem becomes all too obvious:

[A] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good]
[B] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) freedom & (ontic) options]

But, given the Christian metaphysic and given the A.T-Meta vectors in play here, that “unpacking-from-A-to-Z”, so to speak, about “Good” ends up as a crisp logical impossibility. As with Good, so too with Any Contour of the Divine vis-à-vis the A and the Z and, also, vis-à-vis the terms Create, Sustain, Imago Dei, Proportionate Causality, Seat, Substratum, Ontic, and so on down (or up) the proverbial ontic line.

Your Re-Defined & Non-Christian premises don't magically become more "Christian" just because you repeat them over and over in various forms. See Parts 1, 2, 3, and 4 up-thread from here, beginning at 1 @ http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521563514113#c6285788121969199622

[Comment 23]

"...but then infinite regress..."

You're a one-melody tune. Tell us, in that regress, does it land within the Time and Tensed? Within the Contingent? If so then the Contingent stands On-Its-Own in Midair.

What God/Religion is that again? Recall in the other thread,

"Apparently Divine Simplicity, void of Parts, has an infinite (...Time? ...Tensed?...) regress. And in 7 Days Counter Rebel is going to show us why and how that is the case." (... http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/carrier-carries-on.html?showComment=1520713400882#c2948821343992655379 ...).

Still waiting.

The ground of all such contingent rock-bottoms is that Necessary Rock Bottom (...also, in addition, it is the case that Proportionate Causality is concurrent with all such interfaces of Contingent/Necessary...).

To grant the A.T-Meta arena "that grounding" (...and etc...) as "work-able", so to speak, when it comes to the term "Good" both in God and in the Contingent Being, but then try to hold something back when it comes to any OTHER contour of Divine Simplicity, well that just won't do.

Why? Because that “withholding all X’s other than ‘Good’”, so to speak, breaks down into a body of premises claiming that the Irreducible Ground of X cannot create and sustain X, and, then, from there, we keep going and follow through → → as that amounts to a blind foist ending in a reductio along the lines of, say, that because Man is not Free in the same sense as God then in fact Man is *Determined*. And, then, again, we → → keep going as that is in turn a reductio along the lines of the referent of Good and asserting that in fact Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good. The problem becomes all too obvious:

[A] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good]
[B] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) freedom & (ontic) options]

But, given the Christian metaphysic and given the A.T-Meta vectors in play here, that “unpacking-from-A-to-Z”, so to speak, about “Good” ends up as a crisp logical impossibility. As with Good, so too with Any Contour of the Divine vis-à-vis the A and the Z and, also, vis-à-vis the terms Create, Sustain, Imago Dei, Proportionate Causality, Seat, Substratum, Ontic, and so on down (or up) the proverbial ontic line.

Your Re-Defined & Non-Christian premises don't magically become more "Christian" just because you repeat them over and over in various forms.

[Comment 24]


You’re claiming that the Irreducible Ground of X cannot create and sustain X. That amounts to a blind foist ending in a reductio along the lines of, say, that because Man is not Free in the same sense as God then in fact Man is Determined.

That is a reductio along the lines of the referent of Good and asserting that in fact Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good.

You’ve redefined.

Redefining the Christian metaphysic and then repeating it over and over does not make the redefinition more “Christian”.

The reductio alluded to there unpacks along the lines of these:

1. https://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521477716890&m=1#c7549848012944119511

2. https://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521423322095&m=1#c1198496849158473909

[Comment 25]

@ ficino4mlMarch 25, 2018 at 6:31 PM

“…..Either God is the first cause of the creature's motion, or the creature is the first cause. Two things cannot be first in the same respect….”

God can and does create the sun which is (so to speak) “a thing that does x or is by nature an x-ing thing” and, then, whether or not the being/existence of the sun can survive without Being/Existence Itself carries us out of the doing-of-x (..creative act..) and into existence (..sustaining or conserving act..). You seem to think the latter somehow diminishes the ontic of the former, yet you offer no good reason as to how that happens.

Your claim is that God cannot create a verb, and that God can only create nouns. 

Yet God is the Trinitarian Life is Being is the Fountainhead of all Ontic Possibility – so unless one re-define all of that and also the logical lucidity of the principle of proportionate causality, well then one is unable to defend such a verb-less, doinig-less God and His verb-less, doing-less creation. But re-defining [A] into [Not-A] and then fussing about the “problems of [Not-A]” is misguided.

Pantheism and/or Panentheism just won’t do and so too the demand that A.T-Meta contours be treated as-if they were Pantheism or Panentheism:

Quote:

“…..Consider first why occasionalism cannot be correct. Since agere sequitur esse —what a thing does necessarily reflects what it is — if something could not truly do anything, if it had no causal efficacy at all, then it would not truly exist. Occasionalism would thus entail that God alone truly exists, since only he truly does anything. And this cannot be right. For one thing, we know that things other than God do exist—tables, chairs, rocks, trees, and so on. Even if you were seriously to entertain the possibility that those things do not really exist after all but were somehow mere hallucinations you were having, *you* would still know that *you* exist. And you are not identical to God. After all, the very fact that you are thinking through these various possibilities entails that you are changeable — you move from one thought to the next to the next — whereas God is immutable. The fact that you would not be certain whether tables, chairs, and so forth exist would show that you are not omniscient, whereas God is omniscient. The fact that you lack power in various ways — for example, you could not make yourself stop experiencing tables, chairs, and so forth, even if you convinced yourself that they are not real — shows that you are not omnipotent, whereas God is omnipotent. And so forth. So, you know that at least one thing other than God exists, which would not be true if occasionalism were true. For another thing, even if you could coherently deny the existence of yourself along with everything else, occasionalism would still leave us with an incoherent position in another way. For we arrived at the idea of God as First Cause only because we reasoned from the existence of things other than God which require him as a cause……

…. Consider now why mere conservationism cannot be correct. Since agere sequitur esse —again, what a thing does necessarily reflects what it is…..

…. So, the correct view has to be the middle-ground concurrentist position according to which secondary causes are real. That is to say, things other than God have real causal power even if they have it only in a secondary or derivative way insofar as they derive that power from God as first or underived cause….”

End quote (Feser, Edward. Five Proofs of the Existence of God).

Re-defining [A] into [Not-A] and then fussing about the “problems of [Not-A]” is misguided in that it fails to address [A]. Pantheism and/or Panentheism just won’t do and so too the demand that A.T-Meta contours be treated as-if they were Pantheism or Panentheism.


[Comment 26]

@ficino4ml

“....1) it is necessary that you 'will' A
AND
2) it is possible that you 'will' ~A ...”

It is not necessary that Adam will A. It is possible.

It is not necessary that Adam will ~A. It is possible.

There is no infinite regress. There can’t be. Because the Contingent Being does not begin and end in itself. The Ground of the Will is therefore God. Void of said regress / parts.

Craming that into a sort of Physicalist’s Creed doesn’t work.

Then: http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1522049919785#c7062800003269493974


[Comment 27, 28, 29, 30]

The Noun-Sun/Verb-Will Substratum – Part 1 of 4:

“….I take it that if the will is free, its motions lie "in our power." The extent to which that is true, if God is the first cause of the motions of our will, is what is at issue….”


God is not the first cause of “The-Sun’s-Flame-Explosion” but, rather, of “The-Sun-Itself”. Just the same, “The-Sun-Itself” (…all of that verb-ing and flame-ing…) is continuously and seamlessly sustained in existence by God. Before replacing the word/term “Sun” with the word/term “Will”, there is the question of ontic-possibility, verb, and Grounding:

On the Grounding of Verbs/Verb-ing, so to speak: God creates and sustains Verbs as well as Nouns. The Static 4D Block is not God and in fact it is quite the opposite for in fact God *is* Ceaseless Procession visa-a-vis the triune landscape of [A] The Infinite Knower and [B] The Infinitely Known and [3] All Procession/Communique therein (Logos). There we find Infinite Consciousness – the Divine Mind – the Trinitarian Life wherein [A] is not [B] which is not [C] as each is necessarily nothing less than Being “In-Totum” wherein that which does not produce its own being instead by continuous incantation Communicates all that is Himself which is nothing less than “Being-In-Totum” (…see the not-quite-finished-yet https://www.metachristianity.com/thoroughly-trinitarian-metaphysic/ …).

In fact the very identity of Communicate transcends efficient and final causality for that which Is Caused does not exist before in Act, whereas that which Is Communicated exists before in Act. Garrigou-Lagrange’s “The Trinity and God the Creator” adds several inroads there. In the timeless deliberation in/of Infinite Consciousness vis-à-vis Being Itself there cannot be *less* than Totality of Proposition & Truth Predicate & All Possible X’s in an Intentionality of Communique/Procession which is itself Pure Act and which is therefore in excess of all ontic possibility as – again – the express identity of Communicate transcends efficient and final causality for that which Is Caused does not exist before in Act, whereas that which Is Communicated exists before in Act.

All such vectors reveal the just why and how it is that the claim that Pure Act must be Verb-less (…and its twin claim that God cannot therefore Ground/Create Verbs…) is entirely misguided. Treating the landscape of Particle & Motion & Quantum Flux as if that paradigm houses the same Means & Ends – the same metaphysical topography – as the paradigm of Mind & Communique & Intention forces not only a category error but also a wide array of equivocations as one makes one’s logical progressions from Point A to Point B, and so on.

From the Sun and “The Sun’s-Flame-Explosion” verbing to this:

Continued….


The Noun-Sun/Verb-Will Substratum – Part 2 of 4:


From the Sun and “The Sun’s-Flame-Explosion” verb-ing to this: 


God is *not* the first cause of “The-Will’s-Rationally/Morally-Weighing-Choice” but, rather, of “The-Will-Itself”. Just the same, “The-Will-Itself” (…all of that verb-ing and choice-ing…) is continuously and seamlessly sustained in existence by God. 


All that is left then is this: 


Can Irreducible Intentionality Himself Ground the Ontic of Intentionality in the contingent being? To deny THAT forces a logical impossibility – a reductio along the lines of the referent of “The Good” and asserting that in fact Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good


The problem becomes all too obvious as one is forced to defend the following untenable claims: 

[A] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) good]
[B] [ Man is ontologically void of (ontic) freedom & (ontic) options]


But, given the Christian metaphysic and given the A.T-Meta vectors in play here, that “unpacking-from-A-to-Z”, so to speak, about “Good” ends up as a crisp logical impossibility. As with Good, so too with ANY Contour of the Divine vis-à-vis the A and the Z. The ground of all such contingent rock-bottoms is that Necessary Rock Bottom and that is in addition to the fact that Proportionate Causality is concurrent with all such interfaces of amid Necessary/Contingent. To grant the A.T-Meta arena "that grounding" (...and etc...) as "work-able", so to speak, when it comes to the term "The Good" both in God and in the Contingent Being, but then try to hold something back when it comes to any OTHER contour of Divine Simplicity, well that just won't do.


An untenable premise: The irreducibly Intentional, the wellspring of all ontic possibility —God — cannot Himself ground the ontic of the Intentional Imago Dei and, also, that same Ground — irreducible substratum — of Intentionality cannot Himself ground that category of said Seat, that rational i-am amid actual (ontic) options. The claim that Man is not free in the same sense as the Necessary Being is fine. Welcome to Christianity. But to *equate* that distinction to the reduction of the aforementioned “cannot’s” is a false identity claim easily and rationally rejected.


All of that carries us to this comment by C. Rebel:


“…..Adam ate the fruit because his will acted with a defect. He ate the fruit because he desired to eat it. One can't choose own's desires, lest that "choice" will be random or based on a prior desire, ad infinitum. So whence cometh the DEFECT? (If Adam chose to have the defect, then that choice would be random or would come from a pre-defect, which would be random or coming from a pre-pre-defect, ad infinitum..) ….”


Continued….


The Noun-Sun/Verb-Will Substratum – Part 3 of 4:


For that (the quote of C. Rebel at the end of Part 2) to go through coherently one must claim several absurdities and contradictions. A brief list:


[A] One must claim that for the Contingent Being to desire Knowledge is to Desire Evil. But of course there are no “Evil Trees” in Eden. All Trees/Doors (...Knowledge / Life...) are good and beautiful but, the order and manner in which we eat mattered, matters, and will always matter. But the order in which we eat is an Act/Choice wholly separate from the Goodness of Knowledge/Life and instead carries us to motions amid Self/Other there amid love’s proposal to the beloved (…which is Eden and not Eternal Life…). God cannot create the “Freely-Already-Married” (…assuming the Decree of the Imago Dei…). The “defect in the will” premise is *equating* A to Non-A. But that won’t push through in the end because:


[Pre-Eden] is not [Eden] is not [Eternal Life]
[Pre-Eden] is not [Eden] is not [Privation]


[B] The premise seems to grant the Intentional Seat of the Edenic and so it is then left with an epistemic which cannot contain it for – when pushed through – it argues that said Seat of that i-am in fact *is* (irreducible / ontic) found experiencing a kind of Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being for God must have set up a series of counterfactuals (or something) which somehow, someway, at some level, Misleads Said Seat. It is “The Edenic” and it is “The Adamic” therein, which, so far, that epistemic jettisons and it is that which, if we push through to the end, in fact redefines God (…recall that Adam is not deceived…). Ontic Noble Lies told by the Necessary Being just won't do for the simple reason that redefining the Edenic and the Adamic by asserting that Adam was deceived just won’t do. He wasn’t. 


[C] The premise is left asserting the Irrational-Adam and, just as bad, it tries to get there by some sort of category of the Ontic Noble Lie told by the Necessary Being. Like it or not, in the Trinitarian Life, and therefore in the Imago Dei, the Goodness of Self/Other is in fact Good. To should “I/Self!” is to shout a Good and in God such necessarily lands on the Great I AM whereas – in the Contingent Being – such Ontic-Options are 1. necessarily present (given the Triune) and that leads us to 2. the unavoidable landscape of “The Edenic” – as in Proposal amid God/Man, and not to Wedding / Eternal Life amid God/Man. Why? Because, just as in God, so too 3. the Imago Dei must (therefore) have the *same* Ontic-Options of those interfaces amid Self/Other – but – where in God the Procession of “I/Self” leads to the I AM, the contingent equivalent of that is found in the Motion of the Adamic of “I/Self” which – in all possible worlds – leads to the i-am


That is a Motion which exits the Edenic and enters into Privation and, as in Eden, so too here in Privation now, we find, again, still today, those SAME Two Trees/Doors which have been before us from the very beginning. 

The Proposal is not the Wedding. The outcome of the Proposal is, if chosen, the Wedding. Then, we are still not done. Then this: The outcome of the Wedding is, finally, Eternal Life, or Unicity, or Bride/Groom, or New Creation, and so on, and so on. 

 On those radical category *distinctions* see http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1521563706906#c8221677124913647515 in this thread. 

“But what about Cannot-Sin-In-Heaven?”


Continued…..


The Noun-Sun/Verb-Will Substratum – Part 4 of 4:


“But what about Cannot-Sin-In-Heaven?”


The Free and Rational singularity that is the Adamic traversing the radical ontic-changes amid Proposal/Wedding is absurd were it not for the Trinitarian metaphysic. All Grounding in Privation leads us out of Privation and back into the Edenic, and, there, again all Grounding leads us back again out of the Edenic and into God. The irreducibly rational just is seamless with the irreducibly moral even as the moral just is seamless with love’s indestructible self-giving — which is itself seamless with the Divine Mind — which is itself seamless with Infinite Consciousness. We are thereby compelled into the Adamic landscape wherein the perfection of reason just is the perfection of consciousness, which just is the perfection of love, which just is the perfection of being.


The Trinitarian Life alone provides the metaphysic whereby the riddle which no other paradigm can solve is in fact carried through to lucidity: Should such Living Water (freely) pour – quench – fill – incarnate – then whether in Eden or in Privation a mutable and contingent being termed “Man” finds (….having (freely) drank from such a Cup…having (freely) married…) the syntax of birth amid the syntax of unicity such that wherever he shall then look, that is to say, wherever he shall motion, whether beneath his feet, or above his head, or into his own chest, he will find that beautiful Freedom called Permanence.


[Comment 31, 32]

The Static 4D Block is not God

Part 1 of 2:

There is a common error of equating the Divine Mind to the 4D Block Universe. Several reasons that is misguided are mentioned in http://edwardfeser.blogspot.com/2018/03/divine-causality-and-human-freedom.html?showComment=1522231105076#c8242247156279066789 (...part 1 of 4 in that last series etc...)

As a brief observation, the discussion about Eternalism / Presentism weighs in as the rock bottom terminus of, first, Reference Frame, and, second, Communique [...by Communique the referent is the Trinitarian Life and Procession / Communicate / Logos / Pure Act ....as opposed to... Cause / Become / and so on...] lead us into something which the Trinitarian metaphysic is unlike any other in terms of solving / coherent resolution.

Sometimes the challenge is less about the content, and more about having to keep nudging the Non-Theist back, and back, and out of his many re-definitions of that metaphysic in order to get him to actually address THAT metaphysic. It is no good to redefine and then claim a "problem".

One must address the Trinitarian Life head-on.

All of it. Including Logos with respect to Communique with respect to Pure Act and Totality with respect to all Ontic Possibility with respect to irreducible Options with respect to Infinite Consciousness (the Divine Mind).

As per the linked comment:

On the Grounding of Verbs/Verb-ing, so to speak: God creates and sustains Verbs as well as Nouns. The Static 4D Block is not God and in fact it is quite the opposite for in fact God *is* Ceaseless Procession visa-a-vis the triune landscape of [A] The Infinite Knower and [B] The Infinitely Known and [3] All Procession/Communique therein (Logos). There we find Infinite Consciousness – the Divine Mind – the Trinitarian Life wherein [A] is not [B] which is not [C] as each is necessarily nothing less than Being “In-Totum” wherein that which does not produce its own being instead by continuous incantation Communicates all that is Himself which is nothing less than “Being-In-Totum” (…see the not-quite-finished-yet https://www.metachristianity.com/thoroughly-trinitarian-metaphysic/ …).

In fact the very identity of Communicate transcends efficient and final causality for that which Is Caused does not exist before in Act, whereas that which Is Communicated exists before in Act. Garrigou-Lagrange’s “The Trinity and God the Creator” adds several inroads there. In the timeless deliberation in/of Infinite Consciousness vis-à-vis Being Itself there cannot be *less* than Totality of Proposition & Truth Predicate & All Possible X’s in an Intentionality of Communique/Procession which is itself Pure Act and which is therefore in excess of all ontic possibility as – again – the express identity of Communicate transcends efficient and final causality for that which Is Caused does not exist before in Act, whereas that which Is Communicated exists before in Act.

All such vectors reveal just why and how it is that the claim that Pure Act must be Verb-less (…and its twin claim that God cannot therefore Ground/Create Verbs…) is entirely misguided. Treating the landscape of Particle & Motion & Quantum Flux as if that paradigm houses the same Means & Ends – the same metaphysical topography – as the paradigm of Mind & Communique & Intention forces not only a category error but also a wide array of equivocations as one makes one’s logical progressions from Point A to Point B, and so on.

Continued...


The Static 4D Block is not God


Another layer from another thread in which one of our Non-Theist friends attempts to redefine all of the above in order to claim that the term Incarnation houses "God Becomes" (...and of course Pure Act must be Static/Verbless per the same fallacy etc...) and so on with the following:

Let’s take, say, the Incarnation In Total. Your argument is misguided given that it equates Incarnation to God-Becoming with respect to [1] Truly Human and [2] Truly God. WHICH STREAM is it exactly that the Non-Theist thinks the Christian metaphysic sources the entire ontic content of “Human Nature” to?

Recall that we are discussing the term “Real” in relation to the Conscious Observer and also we are discussing the Divine Mind vis-à-vis Infinite Consciousness, or what D.B. Hart terms “….the metaphysical wellspring of all ontological possibility….”

Whence the supposed “becoming” of “God” into or out of “Human Nature” as we follow that Ontic Arrow not only Downstream but also Upstream?
Reference Frame & Totality & Self-Reference once again:

1. Outside of Time: *God* – or Being Itself Himself so to speak – is found subsuming and outdistancing both possible worlds and actual worlds.

2. The Absolute's Own Reference Frame: *God* – or Being Itself Himself so to speak – necessarily saturates all possible reference frames within all such worlds.

3. Totality: A World or an X in some World which itself exists in a God-Vacuum is a logical impossibility.

Quote:

“That every being must have a reason for being or becoming does not say whether the reason must be intrinsic or extrinsic to that being. If it is extrinsic, it is called a “cause.” But that in no way rules out the possibility that the reason for being is intrinsic to the being itself. Metaphysicians advance a concept of God in which his essence or nature is identical with his own act of existence, making him the Necessary Being... But a brute fact has no reason at all, which is entirely other than for something to be its own reason...” End quote (Dr. Dennis Bonnette). 

Context: https://metachristianity.blogspot.com/2018/03/the-absolutes-reference-frame-pure-act.html

[Comment 33]

"...Macro level / Micro level..."

That platform has left out the Possible World which we find should God Decree the Imago Dei.  To expunge the Edenic freedom there amid Self and Other said platform will have to first expunge said Freedom amid Self and Other in the Trinitarian Life, for it is "there" where we find both the A and the Z of that which we find in Eden's brand of Adam. God is not the 4D Block Universe, and so on (see earlier comments).

Whether or not that freedom is different in degree and/or capacity and/or health than our current brand of freedom (...Privation, which is not Eden, and Eden is not Eternal Life...Trees... Ontic Change... as per earlier comments...) is irrelevant given the need to address the *whole* that is the *Christian* Metanarrative. 

Recall both the principle of proportionate causality and the lack of the infinite regress with respect to the Divine Mind. Given the Start/Stop points (...God, A, Z, and so on...) with respect to Eden's Adam, the use of those items about micro/macro sums to an ontic overreach. In fact, it sums to a crisp logical impossibility as described earlier. 




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