Dale Tuggy

Dale Tuggy is Professor of Philosophy at the State University of New York at Fredonia, where he teaches courses in analytic theology, philosophy of religion, religious studies, and the history of philosophy.


  1. trinities - trinities turns 5 (Dale)
    June 19, 2011 @ 1:03 am

    […] Some answers about modalism. […]

  2. trinities - Linkage: Wear your theology (Dale)
    May 12, 2010 @ 3:03 pm

    […] (Why is this modalism?) […]

  3. trinities - Modalism required (Dale)
    February 16, 2010 @ 7:02 am

    […] if you’re a real, historically orthodox Christian, you are a modalist – some sort of FSH modalist it would seem. Or maybe they idenify God and the Father – then, we’d have SH-modalism […]

  4. Dale
    January 20, 2008 @ 11:58 am

    Hi Scott,

    Thanks – I would like to see that passage from Henry. I have read that Cross piece, but don’t have easily at hand – it has entered the Black Hole which is all the paper piles in my office. 🙂 I’m hoping you guys will do a posting or two on it, though, so I can revisit it.

    Re: a necessary creation. I take it that you’re using “Son” for the eternal Word, and “Jesus” for the man he had a hyp union with. Those can’t be identical. But I don’t see why a generic view would entail that this union is nec…

  5. Scott
    January 18, 2008 @ 11:11 pm

    Also, if we posit that the trinity of persons did not freely will that the eternal Son become incarnate in Jesus Christ, but that the identity of Jesus Christ with God the Son is not an identity dependent on a free act of will, then doesn’t this entail a necessary creation?

  6. Scott
    January 18, 2008 @ 10:58 pm


    I should find the place in Henry’s Summa where he talks about the Jews and Muslims who posit ‘absolute person’ constitution. On this view, the peculiar personal property of the Father is not a relation, but some non-relative absolute property; and it seems that you identify this absolute property by the name ‘God’. So, the Father properly is ‘God’, and the Son is some sort of derivation from God. I am less inclined to take this view and am more inclined to take a ‘generic view’ of the divine essence/substance. I highly suggest you take a look at Cross’s article on Derivation and Generic Views of the Trinity. He discuss Gunton, Zizoulas, Athanasius and one of the Cappodocians. Cross brings out some highly problematic issues with a strict derivation view that identifies the divine essence ‘properly’ with the Father and derivatively with the Son. I’d be curious to see what you make of that article and the problems with the derivation view, which seems to be what you are positing?

  7. Dale
    January 18, 2008 @ 8:05 pm

    Hi Cliff,

    I’ve argued in print, in my “Deception” article, that the NT implicitly asserts that the Father and the God of Israel are identical. That makes me, as I use the term, a modalist about the Father – he just is God. As to the metaphysical status of H, I don’t have a settled view at the moment. I deliberately haven’t said that much about Incarnation doctrines – I’m still reading through the literature on those. But this much is clear to me – the Father is = to God, and some things are true of the Son which aren’t true of the Father. Hence, the Son isn’t identical to the Father (and, of course, vice-versa). So, the Son isn’t identical to God. Is he “divine”? That’s a very unclear question – depends on what is meant by “divine”. When we’re talking about identity, it literally makes no sense to ask whether or not X and Y are “completely” or “partially” identical – identity doesn’t come in degrees or kinds – though “sameness” and “equality” sure do. In any case, I’m taking my time in reading through Incarnation material. Part of the reason I’m not in a hurry, is that I don’t hold a theory of the atonement which requires that Christ have some precise status. I expect that trinities will get into both these closely related areas, in time.

  8. Cliff
    January 11, 2008 @ 4:00 pm

    Hi Dale,

    Thanks for answering my question. I really appreciate you taking the time and it did clear up quite a bit. I’m still working through my ideas. I am curious though about your point 5 – would you currently classify yourself as a FH modalist? Also – where does the Son and his incarnation fit in? Have you posted much about the incarnaion yet? Is it your view that the Son was God but not completely God or somehow a bit different or God limited Himself as Jesus so therefore not a complete mode?

    At any rate I look forward to your future posts.