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Rent with DeepDyve. Rent Article. Your Access Options. Forgotten your password? Article available in:. Vol 47, Issue 1, Journal of Pastoral Care. The Revolution in Modern Science. Problems of Modern Science. Journal of Education. Jan Will and artifice: the impact of voluntarist theology on early-modern Cookies Notification This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.


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Find out more. Tips on citation download. See also Davis, Edward B. Google Scholar Crossref. Merton, Robert K. On the influence of this, see, for example, Cohen, I. Google Scholar. Abelard is discussed also in Lovejoy, Great Chain of Being ref. For an indication that this debate is still current in contemporary theology, consider Rowe, William L. Oxford , Aristotelianism was recovered by Latin thinkers, chiefly from the civilization of Islam, in the so-called Twelfth-century Renaissance, and many were smitten with what at that time was its incomparable intellectual beauty and power.

For a list of the propositions and commentary, see Grant, Edward ed. See Oakley , Omnipotence, covenant and order ref. This same concern with whether a particular claim could be regarded as logically impossible, even for God, or merely physically impossible and therefore capable of being accomplished by God's omnipotence, can be seen in the late seventeenth century, in the dispute between John Locke and Edward Stillingfleet.

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Siger of Brabant and Boethius of Dacia were the most notorious of those who saw Aristotelian philosophy as taking precedence over Christian theology. Levi does not provide a source, but for a compatible view of William of Ockham's philosophy see Colish, Marcia L. But see McGrade, A. A quick glance at recent sources on William of Ockham seems to suggest that there is little consensus about his philosophical aims and intentions. Funkenstein, Amos , Theology and the scientific imagination: From the Middle Ages to the seventeenth century Princeton , , 3.

Lindberg , The beginnings of Western science ref. Even a devout Roman Catholic innovator like Descartes was all too aware that his departure from Aristotelianism might be seen as a betrayal of Roman Catholic values. The association of the new philosophies with atheism was largely due to the standard association of atomism with Epicurus, and Epicureanism with materialist and hedonistic atheism; this was exacerbated, of course, by similar associations with Hobbes and Hobbism.

See Mayo, T. On atheism more generally, and its links to natural philosophy, in this period, see Buckley, Michael J. The possible exception is Thomas Hobbes, widely regarded by his contemporaries as an atheist. See Mintz , The hunting of Leviathan ref. But Hobbes's own religious devotion is now being proposed by a number of scholars. See, for example, Martinich, A. Israel, Jonathan , The radical Enlightenment Oxford , , It is clear, to cite one example, that Spinoza's philosophical theology is a major target of Samuel Clarke's in his Boyle Lectures, published as A demonstration of the being and attributes of God: More particularly in answer to Mr.

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Hobbs, Spinoza, and their followers…. Being the substance of eight sermons preach'd at the cathedral-church of St. Paul, in the year London, I am grateful to James Force for pointing this out to me. See The works of Robert Boyle, ed. This is also available in Stewart, M.


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I am grateful to Edward B. Davis for providing me with this example. Similarly, Henry More was already concerned to oppose voluntarist theology, which he seems to have regarded as a Calvinist error see ref. The Protestant reformers, especially Calvin, have usually been regarded by modern commentators as revivers of voluntarist theology. Harrison shows that this is not as clear cut as the historiography would have us believe, and I accept his arguments.

It might be argued that the threat of atheism cannot have been a factor because real evidence of atheism, or atheists, in the early modern period is so hard to find. This may be true, but what is beyond doubt is that devout thinkers saw contemporary atheists as an immediate threat to religion and society. My argument does not depend on the actual extent of atheism in the period, therefore, but on the fact that it was perceived by the devout to be frighteningly widespread. On this issue, see Westfall, R.

Alexander, H. See also Osler , Divine will and the mechanical philosophy ref. Descartes has also been seen as an intellectualist in his theology, rather than a voluntarist, by Edward B. Funkenstein , Theology and the scientific imagination ref. Osler argues that Descartes is, in the practice of his philosophy, an intellectualist rather than a voluntarist, because he relies on the immutability of God to develop his philosophy rationalistically, not empirically. See also the works by Edward B.

Davis cited in ref. Heimann, P. Henry More denied that God could make matter active, except by infusing it with an active immaterial substance. See More, Henry , Divine dialogues, containing sundry disquisitions and instructions concerning the attributes and Providence of God in the world… 2 vols, London , Edward Stillingfleet objected to Locke's suggestion that nothing prevented an omnipotent God from creating matter capable of thinking.

This is evident, for example, in Baxter's response to Henry More's claims that God cannot make matter active in its own right. We will come back to miracles, and the distinction between God's ordained and absolute power, below. Isaac Newton, MS Yahuda 21, fol. See, for example, Davis, Edward B. In both places Harrison invites us to compare this quotation with one from Newton's Irenicum or ecclesiatical polyty tending to peace , Keynes MS 3, fol.

Although this passage does repeat the suggestion that these two commandments are fundamental, there is no corresponding suggestion that they are based on eternal and immutable reason. So it seems that Newton was not so concerned with the latter issue. For our purposes, however, the fact of this common attribution can be seen as a convenient summing-up of the way Kepler did think about God. See Kepler, Johannes , The harmony of the world , transl. Philadelphia, , Book I V, chap. The implication of this seems to be that God did not freely create the rules of geometry, but that they were co-eternal with him, and guided his hand and mind in creating the world.

The four claims are these: The divine will has primacy over the divine intellect, and is unconstrained by considerations of goodness and wisdom; the divine will is arbitrary; the universe is directly dependent on the will of God; God's activity in the world is not restricted by the laws he has ordained … for he can miraculously intervene in nature at will.

It is the second and third of these which Harrison regards as general, not specifically voluntarist, beliefs. Malville, J. A nice introductory book about cultures and monuments in the Arizona area. An authoritative compilation by Navajo and Western astronomers of illustrations, stories, and observations of Navajo constellations coupled with stories from corresponding Greek constellations and Hubble Space Telescope images of objects found in that part of the sky.

A book of traditional stories for kids. See sequel, More Star Tales, from same publisher. An examination of the astronomy in the traditions and world view of the Crow people. Skylore from a number of tribes retold. Schulz, T. The sky world of the Native Americans, through their tales and their observing sites. Solar Astronomy in the Pre-historic Southwest P. A physicist recounts his experience teaching science in Botswana.

Edited by H. Selin , Springer. Holbrook, Jarita, et al. A variety of papers with much useful information. Sky and Psyche. Book of essays on African views of the skies, compiled for an exhibit at the National Museum of African Art.

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Schilling, G. On the Egyptian pyramids and their astronomical orientation. On African myths related to the sky. Wines, M. Ancient Astronomers of Timbuktu a video and website on the project to preserve the papers and knowledge of this Saharan city. Ahmad, I. The Muslim calendar and sighting the first crescent moon. King, David A. Multi-volume, authoritative study.


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Saliba, George. A scholarly history. The Role of Astronomy in Islam Dr. Bibliography on the Astronomy of Baghdad in the 9 th and 10 th centuries by David A. Video of a talk by Dr. A fine introduction to Maya astronomy and debunking of the notion that their calendar means the end of the world in Aveni, Anthony Skywatchers. An updated version of Skywatchers of Ancient Mexico, this is an introduction to the astronomy of the Maya.

The Mayan calendar, sky observations, and monuments. Examines the role of astronomy among the Incas. Kurtz, P. Profile of Anthony Aveni, with a focus on his work on Mayan structures. Scholarly monograph. Maya Exploration Center Dr. Bryan, E. An introduction to the stars as seen from Hawaii and their use as navigation aids in traditional Hawaiian voyaging. An anthropologist describes recreating the voyages of the ancient Polynesians using the stars to navigate. Haynes, R. On the astronomical ideas in Australian aborigines culture. A geologist and planetarium educator recounts how he became part of the project to rediscover the ancient art of navigating by the stars and a voyage to see how it was done.

From ancient times through the 19th century, with a look at Chinese influences. On early Chinese astronomy, as recorded on art and artifacts. Cambridge University Press. Shows how astronomy profoundly influenced every aspect of culture in the formative period, from art and architecture, to city planning, to political and military decision-making.

A historical study. Modern astronomical instruments China plans to build and projects it is joining with other countries to do. Chinese astral lore in the literature, religion, and folkways of the Tang Dynasty On Chinese moon legends and how they continue to be used in cultural celebrations. Technical in parts chapter on the dating of positional observations but excellent introduction to the history of mapping the sky in China and East Asia.

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Stunning Han Dynasty visual representations of the celestial, in cosmology, mythology, and astronomy. Vowahsen, Andreas Cosmic Architecture in India. Nha, I. Aspects of Prehistoric Astronomy in India a somewhat technical article by N. I also thank Haverford student Miriam Lamb for summer research in connection with this guide. Detailed guide to Stonehenge and other ancient stone monuments. On the Callanish stones off the coast of Scotland their alignments with the motion of the Moon in the sky.

Uses a wonderful Coca-Cola can model to explain how the builders thought of the sky. About the underground shrine at Newgrange, Ireland. Maranto, G. On what tourism is doing to the ancient monument. Zimmermann, L. On astronomical events depicted on Roman coins. Elmegreen, D. Norman, Dara, et al. Nota, Antonella, et al. Stassun, K. Contact Us:. Making Earth and space science accessible through transformative education.

Table of Contents: 1. General Resources on the Astronomy of Different Cultures 2.