Against Alvin Plantinga's Reformed Epistemology: The Sufficiency of Evidence for the Belief in God

Philosophia: International Journal of Philosophy 22 (2):230-244 (2021)
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Abstract

The paper is a critique of Alvin Plantinga’s notion that belief in God is properly basic - evidence is not needed to justify such belief - in light of Thomas Aquinas’ religious epistemology. The latter’s epistemology proves that, while evidence is not a necessary condition for belief in God based on his Summa Theologica since such belief is evidence itself from his De Veritate, there is sufficient evidence that justifies such belief. First, I argue that Plantinga’s total rejection of evidence as a justification for belief in God renders such belief purely subjective. To rationally ground this purely subjective belief, Plantinga introduces the notion of justification-conferring conditions. Second, following Thomas Aquinas’ thought, Plantinga’s justification negates his claim that belief in God is properly basic because the said justification-conferring conditions seem to function as an evidence for belief in God. I will conclude the work by claiming that although evidence is not a necessary condition for belief in God, it is epistemically sufficient to justify the said belief.

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Alfie Polistico
De La Salle University

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