On Tracy Lupher’s “A Logical Choice"

Southwest Philosophy Review 28 (2):101-106 (2012)
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In his essay Tracy Lupher (henceforth, TL) is concerned with Robert Kane's (1984) version of the modal ontological argument (MOA). As he correctly points out, Kane's argument is valid only if the accessibility relation between possible worlds is assumed to be symmetric. TL's remarks pave the way to thinking that the MOA is intended to establish the existence of a perfect being as a matter of logical necessity. Moreover, given TL's undisputed supposition (even shared by Kane) that S5 - in which the accessibility relation is symmetric - captures the notion of logical necessity, the real issue becomes whether the premise of the MOA is true. Contrary to TL's main claim, the discussion thus shifts back from technical arguments for why the appropriate modal logic must have a symmetric accessibility relation to metaphysical, theological, or conceptual considerations about the notion of a perfect being itself. I argue that it is only due to such considerations that we even start to ponder the question of what modal logic is the appropriate one to choose.
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