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Metaphysics: Constructing a World View (Contours of Christian Philosophy) Paperback – September 16, 1983

3.9 out of 5 stars 19 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Christians who want to love God with their minds will welcome Hasker's lucid introduction to the nature of metaphysical thinking." (Clark H. Pinnock, McMaster Divinity College)

"A fine introduction to both the subject matter and the process of doing philosophy as a Christian. It offers a blend of the analytic and personal which is too rarely found in contemporary philosophy." (Don C. Postema, Bethel College)

"Professor Hasker has produced an excellent introduction to metaphysics which avoids oversimplification and dognmatism, assesses major positions, takes some controversial stances, and is alert to the theological implications of metaphysical viewpoints." (Keith E. Yandell, University of Wisconsin)

About the Author

William Hasker (Ph.D., University of Edinburgh) is professor emeritus of philosophy at Huntington College in Huntington, Indiana. His books include Metaphysics: Constructing a World View; God, Time, and Knowledge; Reason and Religious Belief (with Michael Peterson, David Basinger and Bruce Reichenbach); The Openness of God (with Clark Pinnock, Richard Rice, John Sanders and David Basinger); Philosophy of Religion: Selected Readings (edited with Michael Peterson, David Basinger and Bruce Reichenbach); The Emergent Self; Middle Knowledge: Theory and Applications (edited with David Basinger and Eef Dekker) and Providence, Evil and the Openness of God.
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Product Details

  • Series: Contours of Christian Philosophy
  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: InterVarsity Press; unknown edition (September 16, 1983)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0877843414
  • ISBN-13: 978-0877843412
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,136 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Hasker gives a competent discussion of dualism, materialism, and the problems attendant to both positions. He offers a third-way:

emergentism: The mind is distinct from the brain (73). Like magnetic fields are produced by objects, the mind is produced by the brain. Or better: soul-field.

Speculative criticisms of free will: Hasker asserts that libertarianism is not “Pure chance” (44). Okay. I still ask, “is man’s decision to act floating in a realm of contingency?” I have not seen Hasker offer anything like God’s Providence to challenge this question. I can only assume the answer is yes.

Cons and Pros

Cons:

Uneasy relationship between philosophy and theology. I agree with Hasker that we shouldn’t dismiss philosophy ala Karl Barth. It’s not clear, though, whom Hasker would allow to adjudicate competing claims. He wants philosophy to be “Free” (23) from theology. This unwittingly justified Van Til’s (and even Schaeffer’s, yikes!) charges of autonomy.
His opening chapter seemed to endorse a form of classical foundationalism. I say “seemed” because he hinted at something like it but didn’t develop it (a recurring problem in this book).

If he is a foundationalist, and his project rests upon foundationalist’s assumptions, and if foundationalism is proved wanting, does his project necessarily fall as well? Maybe.

While he gives a lucid discussion of libertarian free will, it’s hard to see how God’s providence factors in. In fact, he seems to rule it out: “he [the determinist] regards his efforts, choices, and actions as inevitable parts of the necessary and unalterable order of things” (38). If I then add the verse, “Declaring the end from the beginning” (Is.
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I, like many of the other reviewers, am taking this class with LU. Excellent school, excellent class, excellent book. I highly recommend the chapter, "Minds and Bodies" for a brilliant explanation of the mind/body problem.

I would, however, agree that the use of a little more scripture would increase my appreciation of this book. I understand that philosophers do not appeal to the Bible as a source of truth in their discipline; however, I'd like to see, in a Christian book, the use of scripture to back up the philosophy.

Overall, excellent introductory book to Metaphysics.
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This book is both very informative and well written, making it a joy to read. The book isn't very long, so you don't despair of never finishing it!
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oohh.. metaphysics. not for me. not from a class anyway.
Good Writing. Easy to read. Had to read once for tests. I did not have to re read.
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I had a hard time following the author's thoughts. The other books I ordered for my philosophy was easier to read and understand.
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This book is one of the many books used for a philosophy class at Liberty University. It is excellent. I would be interested in reading it again when I don't have 12 other books to read in an eight week period. The author is clear and explains well the basic views and aspects of Metaphysics.
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What do you expect from a new textbook. It did what it was supposed to do. Contents not my point of view but great for academic exercise.
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By Desi I on October 21, 2015
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Perfect for my class, order was delivered timely.
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