Russell's Fantastic Recent Paper on the Problem of Evil

Russell, Bruce.  2018. "The Problem of Evil and Replies to Important Responses", European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 10(3): 105-131.

The paper offers Russell's mature formulation of the problem of evil, as well as strong replies to important theodicies and defenses. And in response to the G.E. Moore Shift reply, Russell devotes the last half of the paper to a careful exposition and critique of Plantinga's reformed epistemology and Swinburne's Bayesian case for theism.

Absolutely required reading.

The Problem of Demiurgism

Here's yet another argument to add to the list. Demiurgism -- the view that a divine being made the world from uncreated, primordial stuff -- explains all the same data that classical theism can explain. And while it is slightly less simple than classical theism, it more than makes up for it in terms of conservatism, since (unlike classical theism) it doesn't fall afoul of the problem of creation ex nihilo. Therefore, prima facie, demiurgism is at least a slightly better explanation of the relevant data than classical theism.

The Problem of Polytheisms and the Problem of Alternative Theisms

Here's yet another argument (or two) to add to the list. In Lataster and Philipse (2017) and Lataster (2018), it is argued that alternative, rival supernatural hypotheses provide good grounds for thinking classical theism is very much less likely than not.

Review of Sterba's Is a Good God Logically Possible?


Review of James Sterba, Is a Good God Logically Possible? Palgrave MacMillan, 2019.  209 pages. $29.99 (soft cover). ISBN 978-3-030-05468-7.

Soon after the appearance of Alvin Plantinga’s free will defense[1] (PFWD), the consensus among analytic philosophers of religion was that Plantinga permanently and decisively put to rest the so-called logical problem of evil, according to which God and evil are logically incompatible.[2] Since then, few have attempted to defend a deductive version of the problem of evil, and have focused instead on probabilistic formulations of the problem.
            However, the tide appears to have turned. A recent wave of articles indicates that philosophers of religion have become increasingly skeptical of the success of PFWD against the logical problem of evil. To date, three main sorts of worries have been raised. According to the first, PFWD seems to be

The Problem of Divine Authority: A New Argument Against Theism

Rough Draft:
Here's a new argument to add to the list. Michael Huemer has recently powerfully argued that the concept of political authority is incoherent. If he's right, then prima facie, the concept of divine authority over humans is incoherent. But on classical theism, God has divine authority over us. Therefore, classical theism is false.

Huge Book Sale at Palgrave Macmillan

All books are currently on sale for 9.99 USD/EUR, including my recent book with Joshua Rasmussen. Code: CYBER19PAL. Free shipping! Sale ends Dec. 3rd, so don't delay!

Thanks to Gabriele Contessa, Yujin Nagasawa, and August Dyarchy for the pointer.

David Manley's New Paper on God and the Bayesian Conception of Evidence

Manley, David. "God and the Bayesian Conception of Evidence", Religious Studies (forthcoming).

Contemporary arguments for and against the existence of God are often formulated within a broadly Bayesian framework. Arguments of this sort focus on a specific feature of the world that is taken to provide probabilistic evidence for or against the existence of God: the existence of life in a ‘fine-tuned’ universe, the magnitude of suffering, divine hiddenness, etc. In each case, the idea is that things were more likely to be this way if God existed than if God did not exist—or the other way around. Less attention, however, has been paid to the deeper question of what it takes for something to count as evidence for or against the existence of God. What exactly is being claimed when it is said that some feature of the world is more or less likely given the existence of God, and how should we go about assessing such a claim? This paper is about epistemological issues—and in particular, certain potential cognitive errors—that arise when we reason probabilistically about the existence of God. The moral is not that we should refrain from reasoning in this way, but that we should be mindful of potential errors when we do.

Russell's Fantastic Recent Paper on the Problem of Evil

Russell, Bruce.  2018. " The Problem of Evil and Replies to Important Responses ", European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 10...