Forums

Reasons for Joy; In Gentleness, and Respect.

Profile of Nick McNeely

Show Posts

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.


Messages - Nick McNeely

1
Choose Your Own Topic / Re: The PSR and IBE
« on: November 24, 2015, 03:58:52 pm »
Under what circumstances should we accept a given explanatory hypothesis instead of the hypothesis that the phenomenon in question simply has no explanation?

P(evidence|hypothesis)>P(evidence|no effect)

(assuming, of course, that there's only one explanation available. If more than one is available, the above condition and the probability of the given hypothesis being greater than the probability of any of the other available hypotheses.

Look at that, no PSR needed!

As usual, Pruss has nothing to offer. It's really telling that he still even defends PSR since he's admitted that his objection to the fatal argument against PSR is a strawman ( http://alexanderpruss.blogspot.com/2010/05/explaining-contingent-with-necessary.html ).

Every explanandum has an explanans. Either those explanans are themselves explanada in which case they have their own explanans, or they're not. If they are explananda, then their explanans either are explananda or not. Etc. We have an explanatory chain.

So, the chain either terminates or it doesn't. If the chain doesn't terminate, then we have a network of contingent facts explaining each other. In that case, LCA fails.

If it does, it either terminates in all necessary facts or it terminates in a set of explanans one of which is a brute fact.

If the latter, then PSR is false and thus LCA fails.

If the terminal set of explanas is composed of only necessary facts, then all facts are necessary facts. This implies modal collapse.

Not sure where the admission was located in that link - didn't see one.

It helps to read the comments.

Quote
To the first part of your comment, it seems that you're simply asserting that explanatory hypotheses are more probable than non-explanatory hypotheses.

I made no such assertion. I merely answered the question. That's the condition on which we "accept a given explanatory hypothesis instead of the hypothesis that the phenomenon in question simply has no explanation".


2
Choose Your Own Topic / Re: The PSR and IBE
« on: November 22, 2015, 07:47:24 pm »
Under what circumstances should we accept a given explanatory hypothesis instead of the hypothesis that the phenomenon in question simply has no explanation?

P(evidence|hypothesis)>P(evidence|no effect)

(assuming, of course, that there's only one explanation available. If more than one is available, the above condition and the probability of the given hypothesis being greater than the probability of any of the other available hypotheses.

Look at that, no PSR needed!

As usual, Pruss has nothing to offer. It's really telling that he still even defends PSR since he's admitted that his objection to the fatal argument against PSR is a strawman ( http://alexanderpruss.blogspot.com/2010/05/explaining-contingent-with-necessary.html ).

Every explanandum has an explanans. Either those explanans are themselves explanada in which case they have their own explanans, or they're not. If they are explananda, then their explanans either are explananda or not. Etc. We have an explanatory chain.

So, the chain either terminates or it doesn't. If the chain doesn't terminate, then we have a network of contingent facts explaining each other. In that case, LCA fails.

If it does, it either terminates in all necessary facts or it terminates in a set of explanans one of which is a brute fact.

If the latter, then PSR is false and thus LCA fails.

If the terminal set of explanas is composed of only necessary facts, then all facts are necessary facts. This implies modal collapse.


3
Eternity / Re: Please Help with Hilbert's Hotel
« on: November 17, 2015, 10:18:39 pm »
I was doing good with Hilbert's Hotel analogy until i got to this paragraph which WLC doesn't seem to explain:

Quote
Now you might think that by these maneuvers the manager could always keep his strange hotel fully occupied. But you’d be wrong. For suppose the guests in rooms #4, 5, 6 … check out. At a single stroke the hotel would be virtually emptied, the guest register reduced to just three names, and the infinite converted to finitude. And yet it would be true that the same number of guests checked out this time as when all the guests in the odd-numbered rooms checked out! Can such a hotel exist in reality?

Craig, William Lane (2015-06-01). On Guard for Students: A Thinker's Guide to the Christian Faith (Kindle Locations 806-809). David C. Cook. Kindle Edition.

How is the hotel emptied by just 3 people checking out?

Thanks!

The ellipses indicate rooms with numbers that are 4 or greater, not just 4, 5, and 6.

4
I don't see how the PSR fails based on your terminal chain. Doesnt the LCA also work in reverse?

When something terminates - when its existence comes to an end - isnt that equally explained by Leibnitz?

The same God who is given as the explanation for a thing's existence is also offered as the ultimate explanation for why anything does not exist - because if God wanted it to exist, it would.

If the chain terminates, then there are precisely two options. One is that it terminates in a set of facts with at least one member being a non-necessary fact. The other is that it terminates in all necessary facts.

In the former, there is at least one brute fact and PSR is false. PSR is a premise of LCA, so LCA fails.

In the latter, it follows that all facts are necessary facts. This means modal collapse. You couldn't have done otherwise. So, LCA doesn't fail, but there's tons of other undesirable consequences. Moral arguments fail. You don't have free will. Fine tuning arguments fail. etc

6
Kalam Cosmological Argument / Re: What is a beginning?
« on: November 07, 2015, 05:54:11 pm »
X begins to exist def=

i) X comes into being at T, and T is the first time of Xs existence

ii) Or, X, having previously existed at T*, comes into being at T and is separated by any interval of non zero duration between T* and T where X does not exist.

iii)There is no state of affairs in the real world where X exists timelessly

iv)Xs existence at T is a tensed fact


Given this definition, God exists timelessly in the real world so he cannot begin to exist.

God exists in the world. This is something Christians must hold if they believe that Jesus was God. There was a first moment at which God existed in the world (which follows from a closed finite past and the existence of God in the world). From your definition, Christians must hold that God began to exist.

7
Nature of God / Omnipotence vs Omnibenevolence
« on: November 02, 2015, 08:48:56 pm »
The current Q&A: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/omnipotence-and-the-ability-to-do-evil

"Rather omnipotence should be defined in terms of ability to actualize states of affairs. Under this conception, your question then becomes whether omnipotence entails the ability to actualize the state of affairs God’s doing an evil act.

Obviously, because of God’s essential goodness such a state of affairs is broadly logically impossible."

And that means that omnibenevolence and omnipotence conflict. If a non-omnibenevolent omnipotent agent can bring about Y, then Y isn't impossible. Yet, If an omnibenevolent agent can't do X, that's not an impossibility of X. That's just a conflict between omnibenevolence and omnipotence.

If we broaden the usage of impossibility of X to mean that X is impossible iff agent Y cannot bring about X, then literally everyone is omnipotent. Anything they can't bring about is just impossible.

8
Eternity / wrong board
« on: November 02, 2015, 08:47:31 pm »
deleted

9
It's actually pretty obvious if you make a branching tree diagram. Every explanandum has an explanans. Either those explanans are themselves explanada in which case they have their own explanans, or they're not. If they are explananda, then their explanans either are explananda or not. Etc. We have an explanatory chain.

So, the chain either terminates or it doesn't. If the chain doesn't terminate, then we have a network of contingent facts explaining each other. In that case, LCA fails.

If it does, it either terminates in all necessary facts or it terminates in a set of explanans one of which is a brute fact.

If the latter, then PSR is false and thus LCA fails.

If the terminal set of explanas is composed of only necessary facts, then all facts are necessary facts. This implies modal collapse.

So, could you have done anything differently in your life? If so, LCA fails.

10
Kalam Cosmological Argument / Re: What is a beginning?
« on: November 02, 2015, 01:15:35 pm »
I think he's trying to point out that there's no sense in which the universe began to exist, which doesn't equally apply to God. In which case, either the Kalam fails or it disproves the existence of God. It simply does not have the consequences you think it does. Again, if you think you've got an argument why don't you present the premises and draw your conclusions?

^You win an imaginary cookie.

11
Kalam Cosmological Argument / Re: What is a beginning?
« on: November 02, 2015, 01:14:39 pm »
Aleph,
Nick McNeely is asking why doesn't the KCA apply to God.
The answer is because the KCA only applies to things which come into existence.
If one wants to argue that both god(s) AND the universe came into existence that's fine.
The KCA still holds. And an even Higher Being - a capital "G" God - then takes the place of (what you call) god as the prime mover/creator/cause.

Actually, what I'm asking is "In what sense can it accurately be said that the universe began to exist that does not apply equally accurately to God?".

12
Kalam Cosmological Argument / Re: What is a beginning?
« on: November 01, 2015, 04:40:02 pm »
The beginning of the universe is a tensed fact in the KCA, and there is no state of affairs where it exists timelessly.

When, exactly, did the universe not exist?

13
Kalam Cosmological Argument / What is a beginning?
« on: October 28, 2015, 05:38:57 pm »
In what sense can it accurately be said that the universe began to exist that does not apply equally accurately to God?

14
Kalam Cosmological Argument / Craig MUST hold that God had a cause.
« on: March 08, 2012, 07:16:51 am »
Tetelestai wrote:
When, exactly, was the universe absent?


Are you charging that the uiverse is past eternal?


There has never been a time when the universe did not exist and there will never be a time when the universe does not exist. It is eternal. You've yet to provide a coherent explanation for how the universe was ever "absent" in light of this.



Quote
...to "all things which begin to exist have a cause" (which is laughably not).


Unless you have some unstated presupposition, I do not see why this is the case. Once again, you are ignoring a possible option because it doesn't fit your worldview and in so doing, you are begging the question in favour of your position.


No, I'm pointing out that equivocation is a fallacy. Ex materia and ex nihilo are two entirely different classes of events. As such, the attempt to equate the two is textbook equivocation.

One is pre-existing material being re-arranged. The other is things literally coming into existence from nothing. For the former having a cause, we have plenty of evidence. For the latter, we have none.

So, what we have is that the first premise is unjustified. That being said, this is irrelevant to the thread.


Quote
Where does he justify the supposed necessity for a cause in the case of  ex nihilo creation (which is what Craig wants you to think the universe  is a case of despite it not being anything of the sort)?


Why should the universe be an exception to any other observed material thing which requires a cause to exist? Taxicab fallacy!



Because the "beginning" of the universe is not the same class of action as creatio ex materia. Unless you want to do equivocation, you've got not leg to stand on here.

15
Kalam Cosmological Argument / Craig MUST hold that God had a cause.
« on: March 07, 2012, 08:59:11 am »
Tetelestai wrote: God's existing timelessly in the absence of the universe should be evident to the casual reader of the argument and Craig deals with it in much detail in his work so it's not a novel, unheard of thing that I am throwing out there.


When, exactly, was the universe absent?

Charging that Premise 1 is false (I recall premise 1 being that everything that begins to exist has a cause) is a radical departure from the norm just to avoid this question.


No, it's not. There is zero reason to justify premise one's extension from "all things which begin to exist ex materia have a cause" (which is inductively strong) to "all things which begin to exist have a cause" (which is laughably not). Craig never addresses this point, although he often pretends to through strawmen claiming the objection is about material vs efficient causes or claiming that the objection is that nothing ever begins to exist at all.

If you don't believe me, find a counterexample in which Craig actually justifies the claim that "all things which begin to exist have a cause". Where does he justify the supposed necessity for a cause in the case of ex nihilo creation (which is what Craig wants you to think the universe is a case of despite it not being anything of the sort)? Where does he justify the the supposed necessity of a cause in situations like the universe in which it never did not exist?

In fact, the only reason Craig ever gives that it shouldn't be "all things which begin to exist ex materia have a cause" is a position he himself denies!

Pages : [1] 2 3 ... 5