In Plato’s Meno, Socrates and Meno discuss the nature of knowledge. Meno asks the master of dialectic about the difference between knowledge and true belief. Meno wonders if there is a real difference, and assuming there is, why knowledge is better. Socrates responds by comparing true belief to one of Daedalus’ statues.[i] The statues are beautiful, … Continue reading Are Your Belief-Forming Faculties Reliable?
Are you under a stay-at-home order? Consider thinking about the problem of evil (PoE). Here is a brief exercise. Suppose someone says the following to you: “God would never permit COVID-19. So, since there is COVID-19, there is no God.” How would you respond? Notice that this is an example of the PoE. But there … Continue reading An Exercise on the Problem of Evil
Death is the destiny of everyone; the living should take this to heart. (Ecclesiastes 7:2, NIV) Over the last few weeks, I have made some interesting sociocultural observations. For example, a local grocery store has limited the number of sanitizing wipes available for its customers and has offered to disinfect shopping carts for shoppers entering … Continue reading Thinking about Sickness and Death
The Argument There are several versions of the moral argument for theism.[i] One goes like this: If God does not exist, then objective morality does not exist. Objective morality exists. Therefore, God exists. (This argument is deductively valid by modus tollens.) The Dialectic Suppose a friend asks you why he should believe in God. You … Continue reading The Moral Argument: A Short Dialectic
“What sacred games shall we have to invent?” (Nietzsche, The Parable of the Madman, The Joyful Wisdom) “Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13) Introduction In this article, I provide an argument from … Continue reading The Existentialist Argument
Introduction In this article, I argue that when considering the existence of God, it is unreasonable to bracket background evidence in the manner described below. First, this move is methodologically insufficient. Second, it is conceptually questionable. The Argument from Gratuitous Evil and the Bracketing Method The argument from gratuitous evil is usually articulated as a … Continue reading The Probabilistic Argument from Gratuitous Evil and the Bracketing of Evidence
Introduction C. S. Lewis claimed that the doors of hell are locked from the inside.[i] In this article, I provide an argument to support Lewis’ claim. I also discuss the apologetic significance of his assertion. Assumptions I assume that free will exists and that human beings have libertarian freedom. I also assume the moral principle … Continue reading Are the Doors of Hell Locked from the Inside?
Preface As Nicholas Rescher notes in Chapter 3 of Metaphilosophy: Philosophy in Philosophical Perspective, philosophy can be articulated in several ways, including the essay, the medieval scholastic treatise, and the dialogue format. In what follows, I provide a philosophical evaluation of postmodernism using the dialogue format. In honor of the first masters of dialogue – … Continue reading Socratic Dialogue on Postmodernism
It is commonly held that Anselm’s argument in Chapter 2 of Proslogium is not a modally-significant argument, but that his argument in Chapter 3 possesses such significance. For example, in the first paragraph of Anselm’s Neglected Argument, Brian Leftow refers to the argument in Chapter 2 as “non-modal” and to the argument in Chapter 3 … Continue reading Why Anselm’s Argument in Chapter 2 of Proslogium has Modal Significance
Introduction In this article, I will briefly argue for the following theses: (a) it is not clear that Anselm’s ontological argument in Chapter Two of Proslogium presupposes that existence is a property, and (b) Anselm’s argument presupposes that objectivity and subjectivity are properties. Argument It is commonly held that, in Chapter Two of Proslogium, Anselm … Continue reading Does Anselm’s Ontological Argument in Proslogium Two Presuppose that Existence is a Property?
“More than that: you say that then science itself will teach man (though this, to my mind, is already a luxury) that he really does not possess, and never did possess, either a will or a whim of his own; that he is, in fact, no more than a kind of piano key or organ … Continue reading Philosophical Notes on the Underground: Three
Introduction The kalam cosmological argument is both historically and currently significant. William Lane Craig, the leading contemporary advocate of the argument, has dubbed it the kalam argument in recognition of its origin in the work of Medieval Muslim philosophers such as al-Ghazali. The argument continues to interest philosophers and theologians. Its structure is simple: Whatever … Continue reading The Kalam Cosmological Argument, Part One
I closed Note One by calling Underground Man “grouchy.” That is an understatement. The man admits to being spiteful. He hates his neighbors, practices cruelty, and delights in the misfortune of others. He even claims to take pleasure in his own pain and bitterness, some of which is self-induced. For example: “I reached a point … Continue reading Philosophical Notes on the Underground: Two
“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” (Ecclesiastes 1:2) In Part 1 of Notes from Underground, Dostoyevsky’s Underground Man claims that consciousness is a disease. In a loose sense, given certain assumptions, Underground Man makes a significant point. In a strict sense, however, he is wrong. Let me explain. First, we … Continue reading Philosophical Notes on the Underground: One