2014 Ian Ramsey Conference (IRC) Conference

July 13, 2014 - July 16, 2014


Ian Ramsey Centre for Science & Religion


Special Divine Action, 2014 IRC Conference, Oxford, 13-16 July




– Willem Drees
– Susan Eastman
– Lenn Goodman
– Peter Harrison
– Craig Keener
– Christine Madsen
– Colin McGinn
– Alister McGrath
– Timothy McGrew
– Andrew Pinsent
– Robert Russell
– Roger Scruton
– Richard Swinburne
– Raymond Tallis
– Graham Twelftree


Is there special divine action in the world, beyond the purported effects of a divine first cause? Beliefs about particular kinds of special divine action (such as incarnation, inspirations, grace, miracles, providence, and resurrection) have had an incalculable impact on civilisation, including art, ethics, institutions, music, literature, philosophy, theology, the perception of nature, and what human beings can and should hope for. But if there is special divine action, what is such action like and how would we know? Are there particular ways of thinking about the world that make such actions probable, possible or impossible? How does contemporary research in philosophy, theology, and science bear on these questions? What tools of scholarship can and should be used? Are there advantages and disadvantages, from the point of view of knowledge and human flourishing, of taking a stance for or against the possibility of special divine action? Might there be advantages and disadvantages to various modes of special divine action from a divine perspective?

This conference aims to address these questions anew from a wide range of perspectives, especially in the light of recent developments in science, philosophy and theology. Besides plenary speakers and panel discussions, there will be up to fifty short papers presented. The conference will begin at 4pm on Sun 13 July (registration from 2pm) at St Anne’s College, Oxford, and finish with dinner on Wed 16 July, with final departures after breakfast on Thu 17 July 2014.

For further details, please contact the Ian Ramsey Centre administrator: [email protected]


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