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  1. added 2019-05-29
    Salvaging Pascal’s Wager.Elizabeth Jackson & Andrew Rogers - forthcoming - Philosophia Christi.
    Many think that Pascal’s Wager is a hopeless failure. A primary reason for this is because a number of challenging objections have been raised to the wager, including the “many gods” objection and the “mixed strategy” objection. We argue that both objections are formal, but not substantive, problems for the wager, and that they both fail for the same reason. We then respond to additional objections to the wager. We show how a version of Pascalian reasoning succeeds, giving us a (...)
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  2. added 2018-12-14
    Pascal’s Wager and the Origins of Decision Theory: Decision-Making by Real Decision-Makers.James Franklin - 2018 - In Paul Bartha & Lawrence Pasternack (eds.), Pascal's Wager. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp. 27-44.
    Pascal’s Wager does not exist in a Platonic world of possible gods, abstract probabilities and arbitrary payoffs. Real decision-makers, such as Pascal’s “man of the world” of 1660, face a range of religious options they take to be serious, with fixed probabilities grounded in their evidence, and with utilities that are fixed quantities in actual minds. The many ingenious objections to the Wager dreamed up by philosophers do not apply in such a real decision matrix. In the situation Pascal addresses, (...)
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  3. added 2018-04-07
    Surreal Decisions.Eddy Keming Chen & Daniel Rubio - forthcoming - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research.
    Although expected utility theory has proven a fruitful and elegant theory in the finite realm, attempts to generalize it to infinite values have resulted in many paradoxes. In this paper, we argue that the use of John Conway's surreal numbers shall provide a firm mathematical foundation for transfinite decision theory. To that end, we prove a surreal representation theorem and show that our surreal decision theory respects dominance reasoning even in the case of infinite values. We then bring our theory (...)
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  4. added 2018-02-17
    Taking Stock of Infinite Value: Pascal’s Wager and Relative Utilities.Paul Bartha - 2007 - Synthese 154 (1):5-52.
    Among recent objections to Pascal's Wager, two are especially compelling. The first is that decision theory, and specifically the requirement of maximizing expected utility, is incompatible with infinite utility values. The second is that even if infinite utility values are admitted, the argument of the Wager is invalid provided that we allow mixed strategies. Furthermore, Hájek has shown that reformulations of Pascal's Wager that address these criticisms inevitably lead to arguments that are philosophically unsatisfying and historically unfaithful. Both the objections (...)
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  5. added 2017-02-17
    Wagering Against Divine Hiddenness.Elizabeth Jackson - 2016 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 8 (4):85-108.
    J.L. Schellenberg argues that divine hiddenness provides an argument for the conclusion that God does not exist, for if God existed he would not allow non-resistant non-belief to occur, but non-resistant non-belief does occur, so God does not exist. In this paper, I argue that the stakes involved in theistic considerations put pressure on Schellenberg’s premise that non-resistant non-belief occurs. First, I specify conditions for someone’s being a resistant non-believer. Then, I argue that many people fulfill these conditions because, given (...)
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  6. added 2016-09-29
    No Exception for Belief.Susanna Rinard - 2017 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 94 (1):121-143.
    This paper defends a principle I call Equal Treatment, according to which the rationality of a belief is determined in precisely the same way as the rationality of any other state. For example, if wearing a raincoat is rational just in case doing so maximizes expected value, then believing some proposition P is rational just in case doing so maximizes expected value. This contrasts with the popular view that the rationality of belief is determined by evidential support. It also contrasts (...)
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  7. added 2016-03-03
    Logic and Theism.Graham Oppy - 2006 - Philo 9 (1):73-91.
    This paper is a critical review of Howard Sobel’s ’Logic and Theism’. I discuss his analyses of ontological arguments, cosmological arguments, teleological arguments, and arguments from evil, and comment upon his accounts of Pascal’s wager and Hume on miracles. My overall judgment is that this is the very best book on arguments about the existence of God that has yet appeared.
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  8. added 2015-11-15
    Napad na Pascala.Nick Bostrom - 2015 - Analiza I Egzystencja 31:135-138.
    Gdzieś w ciemnej uliczce... Bandyta: Ej ty, dawaj portfel! Pascal: A niby dlaczego miałbym to zrobić? Bandyta: Bo w przeciwnym razie cię zastrzelę. Pascal: Ale przecież nie masz broni. Bandyta: A niech to! Wiedziałem, że zapomniałem o czymś. Pascal: No to zapomnij też o moim portfelu. Miłego wieczoru. Bandyta: Stój! Pascal: Co znowu? Bandyta: Jest interes do zrobienia... Co ty na to, żebyś jednak oddał mi portfel? W zamian obiecuję przyjść do ciebie jutro i dać ci dwukrotność kwoty, którą w (...)
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  9. added 2015-05-03
    Cognitive Bias, the Axiological Question and the Epistemic Probability of Theistic Belief.Dan Linford & Jason Megill - 2018 - In Mirosław Szatkowski (ed.), Ontology of Theistic Beliefs. De Gruyter. pp. 77-92.
    Some recent work in philosophy of religion addresses what can be called the “axiological question,” i.e., regardless of whether God exists, would it be good or bad if God exists? Would the existence of God make the world a better or a worse place? Call the view that the existence of God would make the world a better place “Pro-Theism.” We argue that Pro-Theism is not implausible, and moreover, many Theists, at least, (often implicitly) think that it is true. That (...)
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  10. added 2015-03-24
    Animal Interrupted, or Why Accepting Pascal's Wager Might Be the Last Thing You Ever Do.Sam Baron & Christina Dyke - 2014 - Southern Journal of Philosophy 52 (S1):109-133.
    According to conventionalist accounts of personal identity, persons are constituted in part by practices and attitudes of certain sorts of care. In this paper, we concentrate on the most well-developed and defended version of conventionalism currently on offer (namely, that proposed by David Braddon-Mitchell, Caroline West, and Kristie Miller) and discuss how the conventionalist appears forced either (1) to accept arbitrariness concerning from which perspective to judge one's survival or (2) to maintain egalitarianism at the cost of making “transfiguring” decisions (...)
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  11. added 2015-03-09
    Wagering on Pragmatic Encroachment.Daniel Eaton & Timothy Pickavance - 2017 - In Jonathan L. Kvanvig (ed.), Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion Volume 8. Oxford University Press.
    Lately, there has been an explosion of literature exploring the the relationship between one’s practical situation and one’s knowledge. Some involved in this discussion have suggested that facts about a person’s practical situation might affect whether or not a person knows in that situation, holding fixed all the things standardly associated with knowledge (like evidence, the reliability of one’s cognitive faculties, and so on). According to these “pragmatic encroachment” views, then, one’s practical situation encroaches on one’s knowledge. Though we won’t (...)
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  12. added 2015-01-07
    The Enigma Of Probability.Nick Ergodos - 2014 - Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 2 (1):37-71.
    Using “brute reason” I will show why there can be only one valid interpretation of probability. The valid interpretation turns out to be a further refinement of Popper’s Propensity interpretation of probability. Via some famous probability puzzles and new thought experiments I will show how all other interpretations of probability fail, in particular the Bayesian interpretations, while these puzzles do not present any difficulties for the interpretation proposed here. In addition, the new interpretation casts doubt on some concepts often taken (...)
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  13. added 2013-11-22
    Argument z niepewności normatywnej a etyczna ocena badań naukowych wykorzystujących ludzkie embriony.Tomasz Żuradzki - 2012 - Diametros 32:131-159.
    Konserwatywni przeciwnicy prowadzenia badań naukowych na ludzkich embrionach argumentują, że od momentu poczęcia mają one status moralny równy statusowi ludzi dorosłych: zarodki mają takie samo prawo do życia jak dorośli. W artykule przedstawiam oryginalną argumentację za tym stanowiskiem, której źródła można znaleźć w XVII-wiecznej teologii moralnej i współczesnej teorii decyzji. Argumentacja ta nie odwołuje się do statusu ontologicznego embrionów, ale do pewnego typu rozumowania praktycznego na temat tego, co należy robić w rozmaitych sytuacjach niepewności. Na pierwszy rzut oka wydaje się (...)
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  14. added 2012-10-16
    The Many Gods Objection to Pascal's Wager: A Decision Theoretic Response.Lawrence Pasternack - 2012 - Philo 15 (2):158-178.
    The Many Gods Objection (MGO) is widely viewed as a decisive criticism of Pascal’s Wager. By introducing a plurality of hypotheses with infinite expected utility into the decision matrix, the wagerer is left without adequate grounds to decide between them. However, some have attempted to rebut this objection by employing various criteria drawn from the theological tradition. Unfortunately, such defenses do little good for an argument that is supposed to be an apologetic aimed at atheists and agnostics. The purpose of (...)
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  15. added 2012-10-06
    Mixed Strategies, Uncountable Times, and Pascal's Wager: A Reply to Robertson.Kenny Easwaran & Bradley Monton - 2012 - Analysis 72 (4):681-685.
    Pascal’s Wager holds that one has pragmatic reason to believe in God, since that course of action has infinite expected utility. The mixed strategy objection holds that one could just as well follow a course of action that has infinite expected utility but is unlikely to end with one believing in God. Monton (2011. Mixed strategies can’t evade Pascal’s Wager. Analysis 71: 642–45.) has argued that mixed strategies can’t evade Pascal’s Wager, while Robertson (2012. Some mixed strategies can evade Pascal’s (...)
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  16. added 2011-02-17
    Mixed Strategies Can't Evade Pascal's Wager.Bradley Monton - 2011 - Analysis 71 (4):642-645.
    I defend Pascal's Wager from a particular way of evading it, the mixed strategy approach. The mixed strategies approach suggests that Pascal's Wager does not obligate one to believe in God, because one can get the same infinite expected utility from other strategies besides the strategy of believing in God. I will show that while there's nothing technically wrong with the mixed strategy approach, rationality requires it to be applied in such a way that Pascal's Wager doesn't lose any force.
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  17. added 2008-12-31
    Pascal's Wager and the Persistent Vegetative State.Jim Stone - 2007 - Bioethics 21 (2):84–92.
    I argue that a version of Pascal's Wager applies to the persistent vegetative state with sufficient force that it ought to part of advance directives.
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  18. added 2008-12-31
    Construing Faith as Action Won't Save Pascal's Wager.Steve Petersen - 2006 - Philo 9 (2):221-229.
    Arthur Falk has proposed a new construal of faith according to which it is not a mere species of belief, but has essential components in action. This twist on faith promises to resurrect Pascal’s Wager, making faith compatible with reason by believing as the scientist but acting as the theist. I argue that Falk’s proposal leaves religious faith in no better shape; in particular, it merely reframes the question in terms of rational desires rather than rational beliefs.
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