Influence and Inhabitation Opposed

  • James E. Christie
Part of the International Archives of the History of Ideas Archives internationales d'histoire des idées book series (ARCH, volume 228)


This chapter begins with a brief description of some anti-pluralist writings from the seventeenth century. The argument is made that while a belief in pluralism rarely meant abandoning astrological thinking, the outright denial of pluralism did necessarily involve the reaffirmation of an astrological teleology. The first main section of the chapter analyses a debate between Henry More and John Butler, an Anglican minister, about the legitimacy of astrology. The chapter then continues with a discussion of how pluralism was starting to take over teleological ground from astrology. The last section of the chapter concentrates on the program of natural theology, arguing that there was a conscious effort to deny the role of celestial influence in generation, and to re-orient the understanding of God’s providence around a widely populated cosmos rather than an astrological one.


Astrology Extraterrestrial life Henry More Teleology John Flamsteed Bernard Fontenelle Christiaan Huygens Natural theology Richard Bentley Newtonian 


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • James E. Christie
    • 1
  1. 1.SydneyAustralia

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