ppt_04 - The Problem of Evil February 1 2006 Evil and...

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The Problem of Evil February 1 2006
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Evil and Contradictions Is the following set of beliefs contradictory? 1. God is all powerful and all knowing 2. God is wholly good 3. Evil exists It doesn’t appear contradictory on its own, but maybe adding extra premises will make it contradictory
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Good people prevent evil We rejected a couple of strong claims to the effect that every good person prevented every evil they can But we found no reason to reject the claim that an all powerful all knowing person eliminates all the evil it can eliminate without creating more evil or destroying a greater good
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The costs of doing good In practice for us there can be a lot of costs involved in preventing evil For instance doing away with someone’s pain sensations will mean they won’t be able to find their way around But those limitations don’t affect God
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The costs of doing good But some evils are necessarily tied to other goods We mentioned the examples of heroism and charity Plantinga argues the free will is similar Roughly, he argues that God couldn’t prevent evil without the greater evil of preventing free will
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Showing Consistency First we need to step back and say what the theist’s task is at this stage The theist wants to show that her beliefs, namely 1-3, are consistent The way we show some beliefs are consistent is by telling a coherent story in which they are all true
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Showing Consistency Say we wanted to show the following two propositions are consistent Jones did not move his larynx after April 30 Jones did some thinking during May As Plantinga notes, someone who thinks all thinking is talking won’t think these are consistent
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Showing Consistency Plantinga tells a little story that shows those propositions are consistent
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  • Spring '06
  • WEATHERSON,B
  • Philosophy, Plantinga, free agents

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