The Role of Causality in Scientific Models of Explanation in the Context of the Retrieval of the Classical Concept of Divine Action

Mariusz Tabaczek

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12775/SetF.2020.010

Abstract


The legitimacy of going back to the classical view of God’s action in the world based on the list of causes and understanding of chance in the works of Aristotle and Aquinas – in the context of contemporary science – seems to depend on whether there is a space for causal analysis within the current models of scientific explanation. This article offers a brief account of the path leading to negation and rediscovery of the importance of causality in scientific explanation and reintroduces the semicausal position of the prominent philosopher of science, Mario Bunge, who treats causation as one of several categories of determination. The diversity of the categories he lists finds analogy in the commonly accepted pluralist approach to the search of the model which adequately describes the practice of scientific research. What is more, the same diversity of the categories of determination opens the way back to the classical Aristotle’s fourfold account of causation and his understanding of chance. This fact allows us, in turn, to defend the contemporary version of the classical notion of divine action against the accusation of methodical error in the form of imposing the notion of the ancient categories of causality on the results of contemporary scientific research, which notion, as some maintain, has little in common with the models of explanation currently accepted in natural sciences.


Keywords


Acausalism; Aristotle; Bunge Mario; Categories of determination; Causalism; Causation; Divine Action; Scientific models of explanation; Semicausalism

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