Existence of God

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Higher-Order Problems of Evil

  • February 14, 2023

The problem of evil challenges theism by raising the following question: if God is omnipotent and omnibenevolent, why is there evil in the actual world? Theists have proposed many responses to the problem, such as the free will response, the soul-making response, the greater good response, and so on. Whether any succeeds has been debated for hundreds of years.

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Evil and Hiddenness: Brief Meditation

  • February 14, 2023

The problem of divine hiddenness is, in some reasonable sense, a “deeper” problem than the problem of evil. If God were vividly present to us, we could suffer almost anything—at least the kinds of things we find on this planet—without (evidential) doubt that God exists (and also with little emotional doubt). But, one clearly could have some (evidential) doubt that God existed, even if God were vividly present to them throughout the suffering.

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Evil and Compatibilism

  • February 13, 2023

There is widespread belief that compatibilism + theism cannot offer a credible solution to the logical problem of evil. Why does anyone believe that? I think they’re reasoning this way: if compatibilism is true, then, necessarily, God can actualize a morally perfect world.

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Problem of Evil as Raised by Amoralists

  • February 9, 2023

Sometimes an atheist argues against the existence of God based on the problem of evil, while believing that there is such a thing as objective evil. The standard explanation of the apparent inconsistency here is that the atheist is arguing on the assumption that there is objective good and evil. I used to think this was a perfectly satisfactory story about what the atheist is doing. But no longer.

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Open Challenge to Atheists

  • February 8, 2023

Well, this is really a challenge for skeptics of a necessary being (a necessarily existing, causally powerful entity), but I wanted a catchy title, and as a matter of sociological observation, atheists are typically (though not always) skeptics of a necessary being. The challenge is this …

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Another Argument against the Infinite Past

  • January 16, 2023

Here’s an easy-to-think-about argument against the infinite past. It bears some resemblance to arguments discussed in other recent threads. Though obviously inspired by the Grim Reaper discussion, it does not feature a series of fractions converging toward zero. I don’t think it’s a good argument, but I think there is a lesson to be learned.

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Two More Arguments Against an Infinite Past

  • January 16, 2023

In an another post, I gave a Grim Reaper based argument against an infinite past. Here I want to give two more arguments. Unlike the earlier argument, these two arguments are not going to be useful for arguing for the existence of God, since they make use of premises that the atheist is likely to deny.