Essays On The Euthyphro Dilemma

What is amazing to me about the Euthyphro is that a short, eminently readable, dialogue written by a Greek philosopher 24 centuries ago has puzzled, and keeps puzzling, some of the greatest minds who have applied themselves to the question of morality.Moreover, as mentioned above, this isn’t just a theoretical exercise, as it directly challenges a core belief about ethics held by the majority of humanity. IRANI PROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPHY AT THE CITY COLLEGE OF NEW YORK.This sounds to me rather like an exercise in mental gymnastics aimed at avoiding the inevitable conclusion that Plato was right to begin with.

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" Answer: Plato's famous question concerning the nature of goodness asks whether a thing is good because God says it is good, or does God say it's good because it is good.

This is known as Euthyphro's Dilemma (named after the character Euthyphro in Plato's 'socratic dialogue' on the subject of goodness).

The crucial move, according to Adams, is that God is by nature good, which is why the two meanings of right (or wrong) actually coincide (this is, of course, reminiscent of — though not identical with — Aquinas’ attempt, which we considered and rejected in part I).

But, according again to Adams, God could decide to command differently, thereby separating the two meanings of right by making, for instance, rape, murder, and pillaging “moral” in the second sense.

The problem this question raises for the Christian is two-fold.

Essays On The Euthyphro Dilemma Review Of Research Paper Example

First, if a thing is good simply because God says it is, then it seems that God could say anything was good and it would be.

Perhaps Alfred North Whitehead was right after all: Western philosophy really is a series of (elaborate) footnotes to Plato. HIS BACKGROUND IS IN EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY AND THE PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE, THOUGH HE HAS RECENTLY DEVELOPED A KEEN INTEREST IN STOICISM.


God's nature is unchangeable and wholly good; thus, His will is not arbitrary, and His declarations are always true. What He makes is made purposefully, and anything that stands in the way of that purpose is bad.

Rape is evil because that is not what sex is made to be.


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