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Graham Oppy [162]G. Oppy [10]
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Graham Oppy
Monash University
  1.  87
    Ontological Arguments.Graham Oppy - 2019 - The Philosophers' Magazine 86:66-73.
    This article is a brief overview of major ontological arguments. The most noteworthy feature of this article is the statement of a new parody of the Anselmian and Cartesian arguments that is obviously immune to objections adverting to intrinsic minima and maxima.
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  2. Minimalism and Truth Aptness.Michael Smith, Frank Jackson & Graham Oppy - 1994 - Mind 103 (411):287 - 302.
    This paper, while neutral on questions about the minimality of truth, argues for the non-minimality of truth-aptness.
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  3. Sceptical Theism and Evidential Arguments From Evil.Michael J. Almeida & Graham Oppy - 2003 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 81 (4):496 – 516.
    Sceptical theists--e.g., William Alston and Michael Bergmann--have claimed that considerations concerning human cognitive limitations are alone sufficient to undermine evidential arguments from evil. We argue that, if the considerations deployed by sceptical theists are sufficient to undermine evidential arguments from evil, then those considerations are also sufficient to undermine inferences that play a crucial role in ordinary moral reasoning. If cogent, our argument suffices to discredit sceptical theist responses to evidential arguments from evil.
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  4. Disagreement.Graham Oppy - 2010 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 68 (1-3):183-199.
    There has been a recent explosion of interest in the epistemology of disagreement. Much of the recent literature is concerned with a particular range of puzzle cases (discussed in the Cases section of my paper). Almost all of the papers that contribute to that recent literature make mention of questions about religious disagreement in ways that suggest that there are interesting connections between those puzzle cases and real life cases of religious disagreement. One important aim of my paper is to (...)
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  5. Where’s the Biff?Toby Handfield, Charles R. Twardy, Kevin B. Korb & Graham Oppy - 2008 - Erkenntnis 68 (2):149-68.
    This paper presents an attempt to integrate theories of causal processes—of the kind developed by Wesley Salmon and Phil Dowe—into a theory of causal models using Bayesian networks. We suggest that arcs in causal models must correspond to possible causal processes. Moreover, we suggest that when processes are rendered physically impossible by what occurs on distinct paths, the original model must be restricted by removing the relevant arc. These two techniques suffice to explain cases of late preëmption and other cases (...)
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  6. Objection to a Simplified Ontological Argument.G. Oppy - 2011 - Analysis 71 (1):105-106.
    This paper offers a short extension of the dialogue between Anselm and the Fool that is contained in "The Ontological Argument Simplified" by Gary Matthews and Lynne Rudder Baker. My extension of the dialogue ends with the Fool proclaiming that "what looks like an argument of elegant simplicity turns out to be no argument at all".
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  7. Minimalism and Truth.John O'Leary-Hawthorne & Graham Oppy - 1997 - Noûs 31 (2):170-196.
    This paper canvasses the various dimensions along which theories of truth may disagree about the extent to which truth is minimal.
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  8. Cosmological Arguments.Graham Oppy - 2009 - Noûs 43 (1):31-48.
    This paper provides a taxonomy of cosmological arguments and givesgeneral reasons for thinking that arguments that belong to a given category do not succeed.
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  9. Godelian Ontological Arguments.G. Oppy - 1996 - Analysis 56 (4):226-230.
    This paper aims to show that Godel's ontological argument can be parodied in much the same kind of way in which Gaunilo parodied Anselm's Proslogion argument. The parody in this paper fails; there is a patch provided in "Reply to Gettings" (Analysis 60, 4, 2000, 363-7).
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  10. Perfection, Near-Perfection, Maximality, and Anselmian Theism.Graham Oppy - 2011 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 69 (2):119-138.
    Anselmian theists claim (a) that there is a being than which none greater can be conceived; and (b) that it is knowable on purely—solely, entirely—a priori grounds that there is a being than which none greater can be conceived. In this paper, I argue that Anselmian Theism gains traction by conflating different interpretations of the key description ‘being than which no greater can be conceived’. In particular, I insist that it is very important to distinguish between ideal excellence and maximal (...)
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  11. The Devilish Complexities of Divine Simplicity.Graham Oppy - 2003 - Philo 6 (1):10-22.
    In On the Nature and Existence of God, Richard Gale follows majority opinion in giving very short shrift to the doctrine of divine simplicity: in his view, there is no coherent expressible doctrine of divine simplicity. Rising to the implicit challenge, I argue that---contrary to what is widely believed---there is a coherently expressible doctrine of divine simplicity, though it is rather different from the views that are typically expressed by defenders of this doctrine. At the very least, I think that (...)
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  12. Pantheism, Quantification and Mereology.Graham Oppy - 1997 - The Monist 80 (2):320-336.
    I provide a classification of varieties of pantheism. I argue that there are two different kinds of commitments that pantheists have. On the one hand, there is an ontological commitment to the existence of a sum of all things. On the other hand, there is an ideological commitment: either collectively or distributively, the sum of all things is divine.
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  13. The Philosophical Insignificance of Gödel's Slingshot.G. Oppy - 1997 - Mind 106 (421):121-142.
    This paper is a critical examination of Stephen Neale's *The Philosophical Significance of Godel's slingshot*. I am sceptical of the philosophical significance of Godel’s Slingshot (and of Slingshot arguments in general). In particular, I do not believe that Godel’s Slingshot has any interesting and important philosophical consequences for theories of facts or for referential treatments of definite descriptions. More generally, I do not believe that any Slingshot arguments have interesting and important philosophical consequences for theories of facts or for referential (...)
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  14. Reply to Trakakis and Nagasawa.Michael Almeida & Graham Oppy - 2005 - Ars Disputandi 5:5-11.
    Nick Trakakis and Yujin Nagasawa criticise the argument in Almeida and Oppy . According to Trakakis and Nagasawa, we are mistaken in our claim that the sceptical theist response to evidential arguments from evil is unacceptable because it would undermine ordinary moral reasoning. In their view, there is no good reason to think that sceptical theism leads to an objectionable form of moral scepticism. We disagree. In this paper, we explain why we think that the argument of Nagasawa and Trakakis (...)
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  15.  30
    Infinity in Pascal's Wager.Graham Oppy - 2018 - In Paul Bartha & Lawrence Pasternack (eds.), Pascal's Wager. Cambridge, UK: pp. 260-77.
    Bartha (2012) conjectures that, if we meet all of the other objections to Pascal’s wager, then the many-Gods objection is already met. Moreover, he shows that, if all other objections to Pascal’s wager are already met, then, in a choice between a Jealous God, an Indifferent God, a Very Nice God, a Very Perverse God, the full range of Nice Gods, the full range of Perverse Gods, and no God, you should wager on the Jealous God. I argue that his (...)
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  16. What Derivations Cannot Do.Graham Oppy - 2015 - Religious Studies 51 (3):323-333.
    I think that there is much about contemporary philosophy of religion that should change. Most importantly, philosophy of religion should be philosophy of religion, not merely philosophy of theism, or philosophy of Christianity, or philosophy of certain denominations of Christianity, or the like. Here, however, I shall complain about one fairly narrow aspect of contemporary philosophy of religion that really irks me: its obsession with derivations that have as their conclusion either the claim that God exists or the claim that (...)
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  17. Craig, Mackie, and the Kalam Cosmological Argument.Graham Oppy - 1991 - Religious Studies 27 (2):189 - 197.
    In ‘Professor Mackie and the Kalam Cosmological Argument’ , 367–75), Professor William Lane Craig undertakes to demonstrate that J. L. Mackie's analysis of the kalam cosmological argument in The Miracle of Theism is ‘superficial’, and that Mackie ‘has failed to provide any compelling or even intuitively appealing objection against the argument’ . I disagree with Craig's judgement; for it seems to me that the considerations which Mackie advances do serve to refute the kalam cosmological argument. Consequently, the purpose of this (...)
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  18. On ‘a New Cosmological Argument’.Graham Oppy - 2000 - Religious Studies 36 (3):345-353.
    Richard Gale and Alexander Pruss contend that their ‘new cosmological argument’ is an improvement over familiar cosmological arguments because it relies upon a weaker version of the Principle of Sufficient Reason than that used in those more familiar arguments. However, I note that their ‘weaker’ version of the Principle of Sufficient Reason entails the ‘stronger’ version of that principle which is used in more familiar arguments, so that the alleged advantage of their proof turns out to be illusory. Moreover, I (...)
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  19. On Rescher on Pascal's Wager.Graham Oppy - 1991 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 30 (3):159 - 168.
    In Pascal's Wager: A Study Of Practical Reasoning In Philosophical Theology ,[1] Nicholas Rescher aims to show that, contrary to received philosophical opinion, Pascal's Wager argument is "the vehicle of a fruitful and valuable insight--one which not only represents a milestone in the development of an historically important tradition of thought but can still be seen as making an instructive contribution to philosophical theology".[2] In particular, Rescher argues that one only needs to adopt a correct perspective in order to see (...)
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  20. The Two Envelope 'Paradox'.Frank Jackson, Peter Menzies & Graham Oppy - 1994 - Analysis 54 (1):43 - 45.
    This paper discusses the finite version of the two envelope paradox. (That is, we treat the paradox against the background assumption that there is only a finite amount of money in the world.).
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  21. Uncaused Beginnings.Graham Oppy - 2010 - Faith and Philosophy 27 (1):61-71.
    I defend the view that it is possible for reality to have a contingent initial state under the causal relation even though it is impossible for any other (non-overlapping) parts of reality to have no cause. I claim that, while there are good theoretical and commonsense grounds for maintaining that it is simply not possible for non-initial parts of reality to have no cause, these good grounds do not require one to claim that it is impossible that reality has an (...)
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  22. Arguments From Moral Evil.Graham Oppy - 2004 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 56 (2/3):59 - 87.
    In this paper, I argue that -- contrary to widely received opinion -- logical arguments from evil are well and truly alive and kicking.
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  23. Response to Gettings.G. Oppy - 2000 - Analysis 60 (4):363-367.
    This article is a reply to Michael Gettings' criticisms of a previous paper of mine on Godel's ontological argument. (All relevant bibliographical details may be found in the article.) I provide a patch to my previous -- faulty -- attempt to provide a parody of Godel's ontological argument on the model of Gaunilo's parody of Anselm's Proslogion 2 argument.
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  24. Arguing About The Kalam Cosmological Argument.Graham Oppy - 2002 - Philo 5 (1):34-61.
    This paper begins with a fairly careful and detailed discussion of the conditions under which someone who presents an argument ought to be prepared to concede that the argument is unsuccessful. The conclusions reached in this discussion are then applied to William Lane Craig’s defense of what he calls “the kalam cosmological argument.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, the chief contention of the paper is that Craig ought to be prepared to concede that “the kalam cosmological argument” is not a successful argument. The (...)
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  25. Omnipotence.Graham Oppy - 2005 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 71 (1):58–84.
    Recently, many philosophers have supposed that the divine attribute of omnipotence is properly understood as some kind of maximal power. I argue that all of the best known attempts to analyse omnipotence in terms of maximal power are multiply flawed. Moreover, I argue that there are compelling reasons for supposing that, on orthodox theistic conceptions, maximal power is not one of the divine attributes.
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  26. Hume and the Argument for Biological Design.Graham Oppy - 1996 - Biology and Philosophy 11 (4):519-534.
    There seems to be a widespread conviction — evidenced, for example, in the work of Mackie, Dawkins and Sober — that it is Darwinian rather than Humean considerations which deal the fatal logical blow to arguments for intelligent design. I argue that this conviction cannot be well-founded. If there are current logically decisive objections to design arguments, they must be Humean — for Darwinian considerations count not at all against design arguments based upon apparent cosmological fine-tuning. I argue, further, that (...)
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  27. Evidential Arguments From Evil and Skeptical Theism.Michael Almeida & Graham Oppy - 2004 - Philo 8 (2):84 - 94.
    In this paper we respond to criticisms by Michael Bergmann and Michael Rea in their “In Defense of Sceptical Theism : A Reply to Almeida and Oppy,” Australasian Journal of Philosophy 83.
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  28. On Defining Art Historically.Graham Oppy - 1991 - British Journal of Aesthetics 32 (2):153-161.
    This paper is an extended critical discussion of Jerrold Levinson's historical definition of art. I try out various different avenues of attack; it is not clear whether any of them is ultimately successful.
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  29. Maydole’s 2QS5 Argument.Graham Oppy - 2004 - Philo 7 (2):203-211.
    This paper is a reply to Robert Maydole’s “The Modal Perfection Argument for the Existence of a Supreme Being,” published in Philo 6, 2, 2003. I argue that Maydole’s Modal Perfection Argument fails, and that there is no evident way in which it can be repaired.
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  30. Maydole’s Modal Perfection Argument.Graham Oppy - 2007 - Philo 10 (1):72-84.
    In “On Oppy’s Objections to the Modal Perfection Argument,” Philo 8, 2, 2005, 123–30, Robert Maydole argues that his modal perfection argument—set out in his “The Modal Perfection Argument for a Supreme Being,” Philo 6, 2, 2003, 299–313—“remains arguably sound” in the face of the criticisms that I made of this argument in my “Maydole’s 2QS5 Argument,” Philo 7, 2, 2004, 203–11. I reply that Maydole is wrong: his argument is fatally flawed, and his attempts to avoid the criticisms that (...)
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  31. Semantics for Propositional Attitude Ascriptions.Graham Oppy - 1992 - Philosophical Studies 67 (1):1 - 18.
    This paper provides a semantics for propositional attitude ascriptions. (In this respect, the title of the paper is quite well chosen.).
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  32. Faulty Reasoning About Default Principles in Cosmological Arguments.Graham Oppy - 2004 - Faith and Philosophy 21 (2):242-249.
    Robert Koons claims that my previous critique of his “new” cosmological argument is vitiated by confusion about the nature of defeasible argumentation.In response, I claim that Koons misrepresents—and perhaps misunderstands—the nature of my objections to his “new” cosmological argument. The main claims which I defend are: (1) that the move from a non-defeasible to a defeasible causal principle makes absolutely no difference to the success of the cosmological argument in which it is contained; and (2) that, since it is perfectly (...)
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  33. Rowe's Evidential Arguments From Evil.Graham Oppy - 2013 - In Justin McBrayer & Daniel Howard-Snyder (eds.), A Companion to the Problem of Evil. Wiley-Blackwell. pp. 49-66.
    This chapter discusses the two most prominent recent evidential arguments from evil, due, respectively, to William Rowe and Paul Draper. I argue that neither of these evidential arguments from evil is successful, i.e. such that it ought to persuade anyone who believes in God to give up that belief. In my view, theists can rationally maintain that each of these evidential arguments from evil contains at least one false premise.
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  34. Arguments for Atheism.Graham Oppy - 2013 - In Stephen Bullivant & Michael Ruse (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Atheism. Oxford University Press. pp. 53.
    This paper consider three families of arguments for atheism. First, there are direct arguments for atheism: arguments that theism is meaningless, or incoherent, or logically inconsistent, or impossible, or inconsistent with known fact, of improbable given known fact, or morally repugnant, or the like. Second, there are indirect arguments for atheism: direct arguments for something that entails atheism. Third, there are comparative arguments for atheism: e.g., arguments for the view that (atheistic) naturalism is more theoretically virtuous than theism.
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  35. Koons' Cosmological Argument.Graham Oppy - 1999 - Faith and Philosophy 16 (3):378-389.
    Robert Koons has recently defended what he claims is a successful argument for the existence of a necessary first cause, and which he develops by taking “a new look” at traditional arguments from contingency. I argue that Koons’ argument is less than successful; in particular, I claim that his attempt to “shift the burden of proof” to non-theists amounts to nothing more than an ill-disguised begging of one of the central questions upon which theists and non-theists disagree. I also argue (...)
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  36. Reply to Richard Davis.Graham Oppy - 2009 - Philosophia Christi 11 (2):423-436.
    This paper is a response to a paper by Rich Davis in which he argues that David Lewis' modal realism is inconsistent with classical theism. I provide what I take to be a coherent modal realist formulation of classical theism.
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  37. Modal Theistic Arguments.Graham Oppy - 1993 - Sophia 32 (2):17-24.
    This paper discusses a range of modal ontological arguments. It is claimed that these modal ontological arguments fail because they depend upon controversial assumptions about the nature of modal space.
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  38. Salmon on the Contingent a Priori and the Necessary a Posteriori.Graham Oppy - 1994 - Philosophical Studies 73 (1):5 - 33.
    This paper is an examination of the contingent a priori and the necessary a posteriori. In particular, it considers -- and assesses -- the criticisms that Nathan Salmon makes of the views of Saul Kripke.
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  39. The Tristram Shandy Paradox.Graham Oppy - 2002 - Philosophia Christi 4 (2):335-349.
    This paper is a response to David Oderberg's discussion of the Tristram Shandy paradox. I defend the claim that the Tristram Shandy paradox does not support the claim that it is impossible that the past is infinite.
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  40. Countable Fusion Not yet Proven Guilty: It May Be the Whiteheadian Account of Space Whatdunnit.G. Oppy - 1997 - Analysis 57 (4):249-253.
    I criticise a paper by Peter Forrest in which he argues that a principle of unrestricted countable fusion has paradoxical consequences. I argue that the paradoxical consequences that he exhibits may be due to his Whiteheadean assumptions about the nature of spacetime rather than to the principle of unrestricted countable fusion.
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  41. Inverse Operations with Transfinite Numbers and the Kalam Cosmological Argument.Graham Oppy - 1995 - International Philosophical Quarterly 35 (2):219-221.
    William Lane Craig has argued that there cannot be actual infinities because inverse operations are not well-defined for infinities. I point out that, in fact, there are mathematical systems in which inverse operations for infinities are well-defined. In particular, the theory introduced in John Conway's *On Numbers and Games* yields a well-defined field that includes all of Cantor's transfinite numbers.
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  42. Ultimate Naturalistic Casual Explanations.Graham Oppy - 2013 - In Ty Goldschmidt (ed.), Why is the something rather than nothing? Routledge. pp. 46-63.
    This paper discusses attempts to explain why there are more than zero instances of the causal relation. In particular, it argues for the conclusion that theism is no better placed than naturalism to provide an "ultimate causal explanation".
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  43. “Uncaused Beginnings” Revisited.Graham Oppy - 2015 - Faith and Philosophy 32 (2):205-210.
    This paper is a response to William Lane Craig's criticisms of my previous paper "Uncaused Beginnings". I argue that Craig's criticisms do not inflict any damage on the arguments of that earlier paper.
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  44. Pruss's Ontological Arguments.Graham Oppy - 2009 - Religious Studies 45 (3):355-363.
    First, I suggest that it is possible to make some further improvements upon the Gödelian ontological arguments that Pruss develops. Then, I argue that it is possible to parody Pruss's Gödelian ontological arguments in a way that shows that they make no contribution towards 'lowering the probability of atheism and raising the probability of theism'. I conclude with some remarks about ways in which the arguments of this paper can be extended to apply to the whole family of Gödelian ontological (...)
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  45.  57
    Response to Maydole.Graham Oppy - 2012 - In Miroslaw Szatkowski (ed.), Ontological Proofs Today. Bydgoszcz: Ontos Verlag. pp. 445-68.
    This paper is my second contribution to the Szatkowski volume. In the first paper, I provide a critical discussion of Bob Maydole's ontological arguments. In this second paper, I respond to Maydole's critical response to my first paper. My overall verdict is that Maydole does not successfully defend his arguments against my critical attack.
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  46. Leftow on God and Necessity.Graham Oppy - 2014 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 6 (3):5-16.
    This paper is a critical examination of some of the major themes of Brian Leftow's book *God and Necessity*.
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  47. Molinism and Divine Prophecy of Free Actions.Graham Oppy & Mark Saward - 2014 - Religious Studies 50 (2):1-10.
    Among challenges to Molinism, the challenge posed by divine prophecy of human free action has received insufficient attention. We argue that this challenge is a significant addition to the array of challenges that confront Molinism.
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  48. The Ontological Argument.Graham Oppy - 2008 - In Paul Copan & Chad V. Meister (eds.), Philosophy of Religion: Classic and Contemporary Issues. Oxford UK: Blackwell.
    General discussion of ontological arguments. (Extended the discussion of ontological arguments in the then current version of my SEP entry on ontological arguments.).
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  49. Time, Successive Addition, and Kalam Cosmological Arguments.Graham Oppy - 2001 - Philosophia Christi 3 (1):181-192.
    Craig (1981) presents and defends several different kalam cosmological arguments. The core of each of these arguments is the following ur argument.
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  50. Swinburne on ‘Mental’ and ‘Physical’.Graham Oppy - 1998 - Religious Studies 34 (4):483-495.
    This paper examines Richard Swinburne's definitions of 'mental property' and 'physical property'. After some preliminary tidying up (Section 1), the paper introduces eight putative counter-examples to Swinburne's definitions (Section 2). The paper then considers amendments to Swinburne's account of 'mental property' (Section 3) and 'physical property' (Section 4) which deal with these counter-examples. Finally, the paper closes with some brief remarks about the metaphysics of properties (Appendix). Along the way, the paper provides various reasons for thinking that Swinburne's definitions are (...)
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