[The previous series, 111, can be found [url=https://forum.evangelicaluniversalist.com/t/jrps-bite-sized-metaphysics-series-111/505/1]here. This series, 112, picks up with the topic arrived at the end of the previous series. An index with links to all parts of the work as they are posted can be found here.]
[Entry 1 for “an introduction to generaleism (or final abstraction)”]
As I follow my line of thought through these chapters, I am finding that certain issues which will be developed more clearly at the beginning of my second section are coming to the forefront now–and must necessarily do so. I worry about this, because I do not want to presume my later conclusions here in an unfair manner–for which I, as a sceptic, would be keeping a sharp and (rightfully) suspicious watch!
Furthermore, I suspect some of my Christian (and other theistic) brethren will be taken aback at the strong criticisms I have leveled at certain people on ‘my side of the aisle’. I do think such criticism is necessary; and I have tried to explain why I think this, as I bring up the topics. Yet I would not blame such brethren for being suspicious, at this point, about where exactly I am going with all this.
Keeping these prudent suspicions in mind, let me take a moment before I forge the next link in my topical chain, to try to reassure both audiences.
To my sceptical readers: nothing I have written thus far, argues that God exists. I have of course introduced hypothetical instances where, to make my point, God must be presumed to exist; but these are not conclusions that He exists, and I have not treated them as such. A hypothetical discussion is one that does not need to be true, nor be accepted as true.
For instance, given Robert Jordan’s cosmological structure in his Wheel of Time series, readers of his books (like myself) can sit around all day discussing his metaphysical logic (such as it is) without ever once believing that his works necessarily reflect real ultimate reality. I think my sceptical reader could treat my chapters up to this point in the same way: you could (and I hope do) agree with my logic so far, without accepting the reality of some of the topics I have discussed with (and for the sake of) my allies. Put another way, I think I am still fulfilling one of my key goals for this section: if I was an atheist (for instance), I would still be making these exact same points. I will not deny that I am, in certain respects, refuting some kinds of philosophical claims; but I am not yet replacing them with a particular set of religious beliefs. I have said this whole book is my testimony to why I believe Christianity to be true; you could say this first section would be my testimony to the kind of sceptic I would be if I nevertheless rejected the Christian philosophical position. I would not be ‘this’ or ‘that’ type of unbeliever; and this is why. I think I am doing a fair enough job, so far, as an analytical sceptic.