Skip to main content


Showing posts from March, 2013

ANNOUNCEMENT: Conference: The Infinity of God

Thursday, August 8 2013 - Sunday, August 11 2013
Faculty of Theology, Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Bochum, Germany


All speakers:
Franz Krainer, Ruhr-University Bochum
William Carroll, Oxford University
Christina Schneider. LMU Munich
Ruben Schneider, Munich School of Philosophy
Georg Essen, Ruhr University Bochum Christian Tapp, Ruhr-Universität Bochum
Philip Clayton, Claremont Graduate University
Kenneth Perszyk, Victoria University of Wellington
Richard Swinburne, Oxford University Benedikt Göcke, Ruhr University Bochum
Paul Helm, Regent’s Park College
Anna Ijjas, Harvard University
Brian Leftow, Oxford University
William Hasker. Huntingdon College Kenneth Pearce, University of Southern California
Thomas Schärtl, Universität Augsburg
Bernhard Lang, Universität-GH Paderborn
Benedikt Göcke, Ruhr University Bochum Christian Tapp, Ruhr-Universität Bochum

Topic areas :
Philosophy of Religion

Talks at this conference

Details here.

A Slew of Excellent New Papers from Schellenberg

J. L. Schellenberg (forthcoming). A New Logical Problem of Evil. In Justin McBrayer & Daniel Howard-Snyder (eds.), Companion to the Problem of Evil. Blackwell. (*Latest version. Recently revised*) J. L. Schellenberg (forthcoming). God for All Time: From Theism to Ultimism. In Andrei Buckareff Yujin Nagasawa (ed.), Alternative Conceptions of God. Oxford University Press. J. L. Schellenberg (forthcoming). How to Make Faith a Virtue. In Timothy O'Connor Laura Goins (ed.), Religious Faith and Intellectual Virtue. Oxford University Press.J. L. Schellenberg (forthcoming). Religious Diversity and Religious Skepticism. In Kevin Schilbrack (ed.), The Blackwell Companion to Religious Diversity. Wiley-Blackwell.J. L. Schellenberg (forthcoming). Skeptical Theism and Skeptical Atheism. In Justin McBrayer Trent Dougherty (ed.), Skeptical Theism: New Essays. Oxford University Press.The links to the papers above are available via PhilPapers, but they are also available (with many others) via di…

Reconstructing Craig's New Scientific Argument for the Beginning of the Universe

I'm trying to get clear on Craig's new a posteriori argument for the beginning of the universe, and I'd be grateful for any constructive feedback. As far as I can make out, the core of his argument can be expressed as follows:
1. The Borde-Guth-Vilenkin Theorem (BGV) is true. 2. If the BGV is true, then each universe or multiverse which has, on average, been expanding throughout its history has a beginning to its expansion. (implication of BGV) 3. Each universe or multiverse has, on average, been expanding throughout its history.
4. Therefore, each universe or multiverse has a beginning to its expansion. 5. Each universe or multiverse that has a beginning to its expansion has a beginning of its existence. 6. If each universe or multiverse has a beginning of its existence, then there is a beginning to the existence of all physical reality -- including all universes and multiverses there may be. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------…

Morriston's Latest Reply to Craig

Here.  I find Morriston's "future praises" argument fascinating. However, it's easy to lose sight of the fact that Morristonhasaslewofotherpapers in which he has offered undercutting defeaters for every last one of Craig's philosophical (i.e., a priori) arguments against the existence and traversability of actual infinites. Also worth noting is that many of these papers are over a decade old, and, to date, Craig has failed to adequately address even a single one of them. To his credit, though, Craig has attempted to reply to a number of Morriston's other criticisms of the kalam cosmological argument (e.g., Morriston's criticisms of the causal premise, of the a posteriori (i.e., empirical) arguments for a finite past, and of the grounds for inferring that the cause of the beginning of the universe is a personal agent). I leave it to the reader to decide if any of those replies are successful.

New Philosophy of Religion Papers in Philosophy Compass

(Subscription required)

-Jordan, Matthew Carey. "Theism, Naturalism, and Metaethics
Abstract: The relationship between God and morality has been a topic of philosophical discussion since Socrates engaged Euthyphro in the agora. In recent years, it has received a lot of attention, as theistic philosophers have attempted to show that divine command theory and other theistic meta-ethical accounts are defensible. Whether metaphysical naturalism is compatible with moral realism is a related (and equally controversial) topic. This essay surveys the main issues in these debates.
(Note: Those who are aware of Jordan's otherrecentwork know that much of of it is focused on critiquing non-theistic metaethical theories, and in developing and defending a theistic metaethical theory. He is a recent PhD whose dissertation defended a variation of divine command theory (divine attitude theory), according to which (roughly) an action X is morally wrong just in case God would be displeased …

Announcement: Call for Papers: The Safety Condition for Knowledge and Religious Epistemology

(H/T: Prosblogion) Call for Papers Workshop on Religious Epistemology and the Safety Condition for Knowledge Oxford University 12 & 13 June 2013
The New Insights and Directions in Religious Epistemology project at Oxford University invites the submission of papers related to the application of the safety condition for knowledge to any question in the philosophy of religion or analytic theology.
Keynote Speakers: Timothy Williamson (Oxford) Duncan Pritchard (Edinburgh)
Papers should be suitable for blind review and be no longer than 4000 words in length. Submissions should be accompanied by a cover letter including the name, affiliation, and contact details of the author.
Papers should be submitted to
Submission deadline is 15 April, 2013.
Partial funding is available to support travel and accommodation expenses for speakers.
Further details of the New Insights project can be found at This workshop is made possible by the …

Plantinga's Abject Failure?

We noted on another occasion Richard Otte's important paper that demonstrates (and Plantinga concedes) that Plantinga's doctrine of possible transworld depravity (<>TWD), which is the heart of Plantinga's FWD, is necessarily false. Of course, in that paper, Otte offers a repair that gets around the problem. But here's a brand new paper (final draft now out in the current issue of F&P) which argues that Plantinga's <>TWD thesis is necessarily false, and that Otte's repair can't avoid the problem. Almeida has recently argued for a similar conclusion.  We've also seen another recent criticism of <>TWD from Howard-Snyder. Josh Rasmussen argues for an even stronger conclusion.  And let's not forget Schellenberg's new formulation of the logical problem of evil, as well as his Free WillOffense. In addition, we've notedMorriston's critique of Plantinga's (FWD), which raises worries for it that do not rely on concerns ab…

More on Howard-Snyder's New Paper on the Logical Problem of Evil

I recently mentioned Howard-Snyder's important new paper, "The Logical Problem of Evil: Mackie and Plantinga". Given the importance of the paper, I thought I'd give a rough sketch of the core argument. Plantinga's Free Will Defense (FWD) depends on his claim that there is a possible world at which every creaturely essence suffers from transworld depravity (<>TWD). However, <>TWD depends on a controversial picture of the the distribution of the counterfactuals of freedom to creaturely essences. In particular, it depends on the thesis Howard-Snyder calls Interworld Plenitude, which is (very roughly) the view that while there are an infinite number of creaturely essences and an infinite number of differing bundles of counterfactuals of freedom for each creaturely essence to have, and while each possible bundle is had by one or more essences, the plenitude of essence/bundle pairs is diffused across a large stretch of the space of possible worlds. To be m…

Provocative New Paper on the Logical Problem of Evil by Howard-Snyder

Howard-Snyder, Daniel. "The Logical Problem of Evil: Mackie and Plantinga", in McBrayer and Howard-Snyder (eds), A Companion to the Problem of Evil (Wiley-Blackwell, forthcoming).
Abstract: J.L. Mackie’s version of the logical problem of evil is a failure, as even he came to recognize. Contrary to current mythology, however, its failure was not established by Alvin Plantinga’s Free Will Defense. That’s because a defense is successful only if it is not reasonable to refrain from believing any of the claims that constitute it, but it is reasonable to refrain from believing the central claim of Plantinga’s Free Will Defense, namely the claim that, possibly, every essence suffers from transworld depravity.
Absolutely required reading. P.S., I told you so.