Divine Simplicity and Eliminative Theism

In Mirosław Szatkowski (ed.), Ontology of Divinity. De Gruyter. pp. 335-346 (2024)
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Discussions of divine simplicity generally overlook the distinction between identity claims that are reductivist and identity claims that are eliminativist. If, for instance, the identity claim that 'the chair = a configuration of particles' is merely reductive, then there exist chairs and there exist configurations of particles and it turns out that they are identical. The identity in this case does not reduce the ontological complexity of the world. But if the identity claim is eliminativist, then it is true again that chairs are configurations of particles, but chairs do not in fact exist. The illusory object that we call a chair turns out to be nothing over and above a configuration of physical particles. The chair reduces to the configuration of particles without remainder. The defense of divine simplicity in this paper argues that it is in this eliminativist sense that God's intrinsic properties are identical to God.

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Mike Almeida
University of Texas at San Antonio


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