Preface to the Fourth Edition -- Introduction -- The Way the World is -- Individuality -- Externality -- Temporality -- Objectivity -- Why the World is -- Necessary Being: The Ontological Argument -- Necessary Being: The Cosmological Argument -- The Inhabitants of the World -- What Rational Beings are there? -- The Place of Rational Beings in the World -- The Nature of Rational Beings -- The Nature Of Rational Beings: Dualism and Personal Identity -- The Powers of Rational Beings: Freedom of the Will -- Concluding Meditation -- Coda: Being
Peter van Inwagen is John Cardinal O'Hara professor of philosophy at the University of Notre Dame. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, he is the author of numerous works, Material Beings (1990), Ontology, Identity, and Modality: Essays in Metaphysics (2001), Christian Faith and the Problem of Evil (2004), Persons: Human and Divine (2008), and Existence: Essays in Ontology (2014).
Praise for the fourth edition: "It is very challenging to present the ideas and arguments of metaphysics in a way that undergraduates can follow, but van Inwagen not only does so with perspicuity, but also with great insight and rigor." --Gordon Pettit, Western Illinois University "The exposition throughout is a model of clarity, and it is remarkable how much ground is covered. There is a precision and efficiency of expression that is impressive. Metaphysics is a first-rate text, and the author is a master of the field." --Jenann Ismael, University of Arizona "Metaphysics is a very helpful introduction to a difficult area in philosophy, and any library that does not have this book should get it... the clarity of the writing makes this volume extremely useful to advanced undergraduates, graduate students, and those faculty who are interested in these issues but have only a passing acquaintance with them. Highly recommended." --Choice Praise for prior editions: