Some Logic in Swinburne’s Cosmological Argument

I have been struggling for the past week or two to make clear the logic behind one premise of Swinburne's cosmological argument. Perhaps those readers of The Secular Outpost who have an interest in logic or in Swinburne's arguments will be able to help me with this task.Actually, his inductive cosmological argument is very simple:1. A complex physical universe exists. Therefore: 2. God exists.It is not this argument that I am struggling to understand and clarify, but rather … [Read more...]

WLC’s Debate Quotation of Anthony Kenny

Here is WLC's quotation of Kenny: A proponent of the Big Bang Theory, at least if he is an atheist, must believe that the universe came from nothing and by nothing. And here is a critique:LINK … [Read more...]

Reply to Prof. Feser’s Response, (Part III)

Ed, Russell’s argument is from Why I am not a Christian, which was a popular talk given to a general audience. As you say, almost certainly he was aiming at popular apologetics. He could, however, address the argument at a much more sophisticated level. I think his best response to cosmological arguments came in his classic debate with Frederick Copleston. Since I have written on this debate, I hope you will not mind if I quote myself at length: "Copleston’s first argument was the “argument from … [Read more...]

Response to Prof. Feser’s Response to…etc (Part II)

Ed, this will be a rather truncated response to these points because I will address just the arguments you present here. A fair treatment of your arguments would need to address your article on these topics in American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly. However, two physical realities—time and space—limit me here.The question I posed was why we should think that a presumptively fundamental physical reality (quarks and leptons, quantum fields, superstrings, or whatever) needs supernatural sup … [Read more...]

Cosmological Arguments: The Naturalists Strike Back

A couple of days ago, I blogged some potential objections to Swinburne's inductive cosmological argument. I concluded that post with an argument that the existence of a physical universe is evidence favoring naturalism over theism.Tonight, ex-apologist has blogged about the prospects for a Leibnizian cosmological argument against theism. Take a look! … [Read more...]

Response to Prof. Feser’s Response (Part I)

Ed, for the convenience of readers, here is a link to your response to my answer to your first question.Here is my response:And thanks back to you for a very gracious and constructive reply! You clarify your position admirably. Also, you are right that philosophers do legitimately serve a role as “public intellectuals” in addressing popular arguments and claims. My friend philosopher John Beversluis published a superb critical study of C.S. Lewis, and I applaud him for doing so. His book … [Read more...]

Potential Objections to Swinburne’s Cosmological Argument

After studying inductive logic for so long, I've decided it is finally time to reread Richard Swinburne's The Existence of God (second ed., New York: Oxford University Press, 2004) and reconsider his inductive case for God's existence. In doing so, I think I may have discovered a new objection to his cosmological argument. This is very rough and any comments would be appreciated. Swinburne's Terminology The first thing we need to do is to get clear on Swinburne's terminology and a … [Read more...]

Swinburne’s Cosmological and Teleological Arguments – Part 4

Richard Swinburne presents his inductive cosmological argument in Chapter 7 of his book The Existence of God (second edition, hereafter: EOG). I plan to start at the beginning of the chapter and go paragraph by paragraph, stopping to comment on each paragraph that includes either support for, or defense of, some part of the cosmological argument (hereafter: TCA).Paragraph 1 (EOG, p.133) This paragraph neither supports nor defends a part of TCA.Paragraph 2 (EOG, p.133-134) This … [Read more...]


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