Reply to Prof. Feser’s Fourth Question

Ed, Here is your fourth question to me: “4. In response to another reader’s question, about Craig’s version of the First Cause argument, you wrote: “Both theists and atheists begin with an uncaused brute fact. For Craig it is God, and for me it is the universe.” Now, as you know, the expression “brute fact” is typically used in philosophy to convey the idea of something which is unintelligible or without explanation. And your statement gives the impression that all theists, or at least most of t … [Read more...]

Craig-Carroll Debate Video Now Online

HT: Mikkel Rumraket Rasmussen … [Read more...]

Extremely Low Entropy of the Early Universe as Evidence against Theism?

One of the topics from last Friday's debate between William Lane Craig and Sean Carroll was the extremely low entropy of the early universe. As I type this blog post, the video of the debate isn't available, so I'm going from memory. But I thought I heard Carroll argue that the extremely low entropy of the early universe is evidence favoring naturalism over theism.In The Blackwell Companion to Science and Christianity, Carroll seems to make a similar point: An example of fine-tuning well … [Read more...]

Reply to Prof. Feser’s Third Question

Ed, your third question and accompanying commentary was this: In response to a reader’s comment, you wrote:I think Bertrand Russell's beautifully succinct critique of all causal arguments holds good: "If everything requires a cause, then God requires a cause. However, if anything can exist without a cause, it might as well be the universe as God." Exactly.Now, your Secular Outpost co-blogger and fellow atheist Jeffery Jay Lowder agrees with me that this is not in fact a good objection t … [Read more...]

Index for Feser-Parsons Exchanges

The purpose of this blog post is simply to provide a convenient index to all of the posts in the planned two series of exchanges between Edward Feser and Keith Parsons. Feser's contributions will be posted on his blog and Parsons' contributions will be posted on The Secular Outpost.This post will be updated with links as as they become available.Exchange #1: Feser's Four Questions for ParsonsFeser's Initial Statement: "Four Questions for Keith Parsons"Parsons' Initial Res … [Read more...]

Swinburne’s Cosmological & Teleological Arguments

I'm not going to try to fully explain and evaluate Swinburne's Cosmological and Teleological arguments for God here. That would be way too much to tackle in one or two blog posts. There are just a couple of doubts or concerns about these arguments that I would like to express and explore.Swinburne's inductive cosmological argument for God has just one premise:e. A complex physical universe exists (over a period of time). Therefore: g. God exists.Swinburne argues that e is more … [Read more...]

Reply to Prof. Feser’s Second Question

Ed, I would like to respond to each question first before responding to your responses; otherwise things could get confusing.Here is your second question: 2. Could you tell us where in your writings or in someone else's that we can find what you take to be the strongest criticisms of the Scholastic arguments for the doctrine of divine conservation? Good question. Actually, I think that recent atheist writers have been remiss in not addressing this question or Thomistic metaphysics in … [Read more...]

Answering Prof. Feser

Ed, I hope you don’t mind first names. Informality is conducive to comity, and after the unpleasant brouhaha last week, I think you and I both want a civil exchange rather than one that should be titled “Philosophers Acting Badly.” Here are the questions you asked:1. You said that I ignore the strongest claims of my opponents and focus only on weaker ones. Could you please give a specific example of some strong argument that I have ignored? 2. Could you tell us where in your writings or in … [Read more...]