Unformatted text preview: Philosophy
http://www.colorado.edu/philosophy/wes/1600.html What is religious faith supposed to do for you? What is religious faith supposed to do for you?
The "human problem" and its "solution" What is religious faith supposed to do for you?
The "human problem" and its "solution"
Sin / salvation Ignorance / enlightenment Some important religious beliefs There is a God.
who created the universe. who is allpowerful, allknowing, and perfectly good. who wants us to love and serve him. Some important religious beliefs There is a God
who created the universe. who is allpowerful, allknowing, and perfectly good. who wants us to love and serve him. We will live on after our bodies die.
Some of us will end up in heaven, some in hell. Alternatively: We have had many different lives in many different bodies, and will have many more. Philosophy and Religion But is it true? An assumption
That there is a truth, even if it's hard to know what it is. An assumption
That there is a truth, even if it's hard to know what it is. Three examples: 1. Does the earth go around the sun? 2. Does spinach taste good? 3. Does the universe have a Creator? Question 3 is more like question 1 than like question 2. Does truth matter?
The case of suicide bombers. Method
Clarifying concepts The concept of God Omnipotence, omniscience, perfect goodness, eternity Giving an argument Giving reasons for thinking that some proposition is true. ( Premises and conclusion ) If there is no God, then what's so special about human beings? They're just accidental byproducts of nature which have evolved relatively recently on an infinitesimal speck of dust called the planet Earth, lost somewhere in a hostile and mindless universe, and which are doomed to perish individually and collectively in a relatively short time. On the atheistic view, if you can escape the social consequences, there's nothing really wrong with your raping someone. And thus without God there is no absolute right and wrong which imposes itself on our conscience. But the fact is that objective values do exist, and we all know it. There is no more reason to deny the objective reality of moral values than the objective reality of physical objects. Actions like rape, torture, child abuse aren't just socially unacceptable behavior. They're moral abominations. Some things are really wrong. Similarly, love, equality, selfsacrifice are really good. But if objective values cannot exist without God and objective values do exist, then it follows logically and inescapably that God exists. William Lane Craig 1. 2. 3. There are objective moral values. If there were no God, there would be no objective moral values. Therefore God exists. Evaluating arguments Two questions: Are the premises true? How much support, if any, do they provide for the conclusion? Why accept 2? If there were no God, then human beings are just "accidental byproducts" of a mindless universe that also destroys them. So there would be nothing special about human beings. So there would be no objective moral values. Example 2 1. Everything that begins to exist has a cause. 2. The universe began to exist ten or fifteen billion years ago. 3. So the universe has a cause. Example 2 1. There is a Moral Law. 2. So there must be a Divine Law Giver. Example 3 1. If God exists, God is omnipotent, omniscient and rules the world with perfect justice. 2. So if God exists, God would prevent bad things from happening to good people. 3. But bad things do happen to good people. 4. Therefore, God does not exist. Example 4 1. Different religious traditions make inconsistent claims about human life and its place in the cosmos. 2. There is no way to determine which, if any, of these views is correct. 3. So probably all of them are the products and human imagination, and none has the truth. Our class web page
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- Fall '07
- Philosophy, William Lane Craig, objective moral values