more from A.J. Ayer

Single Idea 5208

[catalogued under 28. God / A. Divine Nature / 4. Divine Contradictions]

Full Idea

The notion of a person whose essential attributes are non-empirical is not an intelligible notion at all.

Gist of Idea

A person with non-empirical attributes is unintelligible.


A.J. Ayer (Language,Truth and Logic [1936], Ch.6)

Book Reference

Ayer,A.J.: 'Language, Truth and Logic' [Penguin 1974], p.154

A Reaction

Non-empirical and non-causal are not quite the same thing. A being which never had any effects is a bizarre, and probably pointless, fantasy. A being which affected our world (through ideas, say) but is unobservable is a perfectly good theory.