Date: Thu Sep 05 2002 - 15:33:47 EDT
D. F. Siemens, Jr. writes:
> As a Christian, I have very clear philosophical commitments. But as a
> philosopher I also need to understand where non-Christians are coming
> from. Indeed, I must recognize the different bases of different
> Christians, for Descartes, Thomas and Augustine differ from Polkinhorne
> and Peacocke, who differ from each other.
I fully agree with that. What you wrote above it, I am well aware of.
However, it does not change my opinion that a philosophy is a system which
tries to describe all of reality, math. included. That is why Vollenhoven
who studied philosophy and mathematics, chose as his subject for his Th.D.
dissertation the philosophy of mathematics from deistic point of view (in
Dutch) (1918) followed in 1934 by (title translated) The necessity of a
In 1942 when I followed his lectures he was drawing the lines of influence
from pagan Greek philosphy to modern times, to conclude that all of them
were based on a unchristian philosphy. I would have loved to finish my
studies at that time, but unfortunately the war made it impossible even to
finish my first year, as I was taken prisoner by the Germans, fled and then
went in hiding for three years, followed by two years in the army, followed
by my wish to get married rather soon. (It took still almost four years.
And then many, many years and a family later before I went back to
mathematics and its philosphy.)
My interest for the subject did not stop though, as you noticed.
Thank you for your good wishes for the recovery of the healt of my wife. It
meant, however, that this note was interupted several times to do the
Jan de Koning.
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