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What is a meant by the term 'miracle'? Many people have their own ideas of what they think the answer to this question is. In this essay I will attempt to define the meaning of a miracle by examining what other people have to say about them.

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Introduction

What is a meant by the term 'miracle'? Many people have their own ideas of what they think the answer to this question is. In this essay I will attempt to define the meaning of a miracle by examining what other people have to say about them. The word 'miracle' is used in every day language, mostly used in sarcasm. For example, if there was a very hot day in England some people would say it was a miracle, in a joking manner. Likewise, if England scored 4 goals against Brazil, people might say 'it was a miracle'. How do we know what a miracle really is? There have been many great philosophers who have attempted to explain their understandings of how a miracle can be defined. ...read more.

Middle

However, many other people argue that childbirth is not a miracle, for it happens naturally. Richard Swinburne, another philosopher agrees with Hume's idea but adds a few extra criteria. Swinburne says, "The violation could be the time scale of the event". This means, the break of a law of nature could be in the order of the event as happened in the bible when Jesus turned the water into wine at the wedding in Cana (Matthew 22 1-14). Water can be turned into wine but it is done through a long process, not as quickly as it occurred with Jesus. Swinburne also says that the event that can be called a miracle has to have a religious meaning. The religious meaning being some kind of sign from God demonstrating that he cares, that he is powerful, that he has an ultimate plan. ...read more.

Conclusion

But at the same time he agrees with Swimburne in that it has to have a religious meaning. In order to complete this essay I devised a questionnaire to see what people thought a miracle to be. Every response to the set questions was different. One person said that a miracle was 'an unexplained event' and another said 'when the impossible becomes possible'. One even said that they didn't believe in miracles. (You may look at the completed questionnaires, which are in the appendix at the back of the coursework) From this research I have learnt that there is no one definite term to describe a miracle as everyone has their own view on what they believe. At the end of the day it will depend on individual perspective as to what they believe a 'miracle' to be and no one can say it is right or wrong, it's a matter of opinion. Word Count: 706 with quotes ...read more.

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