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

Ed, I am going to take the liberty of first replying to your response to my answer to your fourth question. I am going to do this because I think that this is where we most significantly clash, that is, where our fundamental disagreements are most apparent. I want to address these points right away, and the others I will take up after the 15th when I will be back at my office.Sorry if I was unclear and gave a misleading impression. I do, in fact, think that the laws of nature are best … [Read more...]

Erik Wielenberg’s argument re sceptical theism defended and developed – forthcoming in Religious Studies

(revised 9 April 2014) Sceptical theism and a lying God – Wielenberg’s argument defended and developed   Stephen Law Department of Philosophy, Heythrop College, University of London, Kensington Square, London W5 8HX UK     Abstract: Sceptical theists attempt to block the evidential argument from evil by arguing that a key premise of that argument – that gratuitous evil exists – cannot reasonably be maintained. They argue that, for all we know, our knowledge of reasons … [Read more...]

Swinburne’s Cosmological and Teleological Arguments – Part 2

Like many other liberals, I'm delighted and mesmerized by Bridgegate and various other Chris Christie scandals from the fine state of New Jersey. I cannot wait for my daily dose of Rachel Maddow dishing the latest dirt on Christie and his idiotic crowd of corrupt New Jersey hooligans.What does this have to do with Swinburne's arguments for God? Well, one neat trick that a couple of Christie's friends have pulled is to plead the 5th amendment as a legal justification for refusing to turn … [Read more...]

Very Interesting Theistic Argument

I just discovered Robin Collins' very, very interesting reply to Carroll. Collins defends an entirely new class of fine-tuning argument for theism. This new class of fine-tuning argument does not argue that the universe is fine-tuned for life. Rather, this new class of fine-tuning argument argues that the universe is fine-tuned for discoverability. This novel argument sets up the following reply to Carroll on the extremely low entropy of the early universe: the extremely low entropy of the early … [Read more...]

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...]