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Showing posts from February, 2012

Interesting Discussion of the Results of Helen de Cruz's Recent Survey

We noted earlier that Helen de Cruz conducted a survey to determine how many people find the arguments of natural theology persuasive. De Cruz and others are now discussing (at Prosblogion and at New APPs) an interesting piece of information gleaned from the survey: most philosophers of religion are theists. The discussion focuses on whether (as in other areas) this fact should lead dissenting experts in the field to revise their confidence downward, and whether non-experts should defer to the consensus. The main reply is that there is reason to suspect that the data at issue is to be explained in terms of the self-selection effect, motivated reasoning, and confirmation bias in the evaluation of the arguments of natural theology.

Forthcoming Book on the Epistemology of Religious Disagreement

As noted on another occasion, James Kraft (Huston-Tillotson University) is one of the pioneers of applying insights from the epistemology of disagreement literature to the phenomenon of reasonable religious disagreement. He now has a book forthcoming on the topic: The Epistemology of Religious Disagreement: A Better Understanding (Palgrave Macmillan), which is slated to come out in May. Here is the link.

New SEP Entry on the Concept of the Afterlife William Hasker, here. The article mainly covers arguments and evidence for and against the possibility of survival after bodily death.

The article struck me as a bit too polemical for an SEP entry. Also, I'm not up to speed on the literature on this topic, but glancing at the bibliography for the entry, I can't help thinking that it can't be sufficiently robust and representative. Am I right about this?

Excellent New Article on Freedom and Foreknowledge

Patrick Todd is a bright young PhD from UC Riverside who works on issues in the free will debate. He recently wrote an excellent paper on the problem of freedom and foreknowledge:

"Geachianism", in Jonathan Kvanvig, ed. Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion, vol. 3 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011): Ch. 11, pp. 222 - 251.

Well worth reading.

Relatedly, you might also want to read this excellent paper on freedom and foreknowledge that he co-authored with John Martin Fischer.

Recent Papers on the Fine-Tuning Argument from Darren Bradley

Darren Bradley (CUNY) has recently written several interesting papers criticizing the fine-tuning argument:

-"Multiple Universes and Observation Selection Effects", American Philosophical Quarterly 46:1 (January 2009), pp. 61-72.

-"Weisberg on Design: What Fine-Tuning's Got to do With it", Erkenntnis (forthcoming) (Download from his site here)

-"Fine Tuning: The Anthropic Objection Cannot Be Avoided" (Still in progress. Don't circulate or cite. Download from his site here)

Well worth a look!