Results for 'argument from evil'

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  1. 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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  2.  63
    Evidential Arguments From Evil.Graham Oppy - 2010 - In Charles Taliaferro & Paul Draper (eds.), A Companion to Philosophy of Religion, 2nd ed. London, UK:
    A number of authors have developed evidential arguments from evil in the past thirty years. Perhaps the best known evidential arguments from evil are those presented in Rowe (1979) and Draper (1989). We shall spend most of this chapter examining these two arguments.
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  3. 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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  4. The Non-Consequentialist Argument From Evil.Justin Mooney - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-17.
    Stringent non-consequentialist constraints on permitting horrendous evils pose a formidable challenge to the project of theodicy by limiting the ways in which it is permissible for God to do or allow evil for the sake of bringing about a greater good. I formulate a general and potent argument against all greater-good theodicies (which includes most theodicies) from the existence of robust side constraints on permitting evil. Then I contend that the argument fails. I begin by (...)
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  5. Epistemic Humility, Arguments From Evil, and Moral Skepticism.Daniel Howard-Snyder - 2009 - Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion 2:17-57.
    Reprinted in Philosophy of Religion: An Anthology, Wadsworth, 2013, 6th edition, eds. Michael Rea and Louis Pojman. In this essay, I argue that the moral skepticism objection to what is badly named "skeptical theism" fails.
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  6. 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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  7. Theistic Arguments From Horrendous Evils.Daryl Ooi - 2022 - Philosophy Compass 17 (8).
    While the existence of horrendous evils has generally been taken to be evidence against the existence of God, some philosophers have suggested that it may be evidence for the existence of God. This paper introduces three main kinds of theistic arguments from horrendous evils: the argument from objectively horrifying evils, the pragmatic argument from evil, and an argument from reasonable responses. For each of these arguments, I will first reconstruct a standard version (...)
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  8. Dreams, Nightmares, and a Defense Against Arguments From Evil.Gabriel Citron - 2015 - Faith and Philosophy 32 (3):247-270.
    This paper appeals to the phenomenon of dreaming to provide a novel defense against arguments from evil. The thrust of the argument is as follows: when we wake up after a nightmare we are often filled entirely with relief, and do not consider ourselves to have actually suffered very much at all; and since it is epistemically possible that this whole life is simply a dream, it follows that it is epistemically possible that in reality there is (...)
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  9. Evaluating a New Logical Argument From Evil.Bruce Langtry - 2021 - Faith and Philosophy 38 (2):229-244.
    J. L. Schellenberg, in “A New Logical Problem of Evil,” published in The Blackwell Companion to the Problem of Evil, argues that (if God exists) God has, of necessity, a disappreciation of evil, operating at a metalevel in such a way as to give God a non-defeasible reason to rule out actualizing a world containing evil. He also argues that since God’s motive in creating the world is to share with finite beings the good that God (...)
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  10. Hedenius’ Soteriological Argument From Evil.Anders Kraal - 2012 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 4 (4):123--138.
    In this paper I explicate and assess a logical argument from evil put forth by the Swedish analytic philosopher Ingemar Hedenius in his book Tro och vetande, by far the most famous and influential critique of Christianity in Swedish intellectual history. I seek to show that Hedenius’ argument is significantly different from, and indeed stronger than, the paradigmatic logical argument from evil in the analytic tradition, i.e. that of John Mackie. Nevertheless, Hedenius’ (...)
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  11. If We Can’T Tell What Theism Predicts, We Can’T Tell Whether God Exists: Skeptical Theism and Bayesian Arguments From Evil.Nevin Climenhaga - forthcoming - Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion.
    According to a simple Bayesian argument from evil, the evil we observe is less likely given theism than given atheism, and therefore lowers the probability of theism. I consider the most common skeptical theist response to this argument, according to which our cognitive limitations make the probability of evil given theism inscrutable. I argue that if skeptical theists are right about this, then the probability of theism given evil is itself largely inscrutable, and (...)
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  12. 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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  13. The Copernican Principle, Intelligent Extraterrestrials, and Arguments From Evil.Samuel Ruhmkorff - 2019 - Religious Studies 55:297-317.
    The physicist Richard Gott defends the Copernican principle, which claims that when we have no information about our position along a given dimension among a group of observers, we should consider ourselves to be randomly located among those observers in respect to that dimension. First, I apply Copernican reasoning to the distribution of evil in the universe. I then contend that evidence for intelligent extraterrestrial life strengthens four important versions of the argument from evil. I remain (...)
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  14. Skeptical Theism and Morriston’s Humean Argument From Evil.Timothy Perrine - 2019 - Sophia 58 (2):115-135.
    There’s a growing sense among philosophers of religion that Humean arguments from evil are some of the most formidable arguments against theism, and skeptical theism fails to undermine those arguments because they fail to make the inferences skeptical theists criticize. In line with this trend, Wes Morriston has recently formulated a Humean argument from evil, and his chief defense of it is that skeptical theism is irrelevant to it. Here I argue that skeptical theism is (...)
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  15. On the a Priori Rejection of Evidential Arguments From Evil.Daniel Howard-Snyder & John Hawthorne - 1994 - Sophia:33-47.
    Recent work on the evidential argument from evil offers us sundry considerations which are intended to weigh against this form of atheological arguments. By far the most provocative is that on a priori grounds alone, evil can be shown to be evidentially impotent. This astonishing thesis has been given a vigorous defense by Keith Yandell. In this paper, we shall measure the prospects for an a priori dismissal of evidential arguments from evil.
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  16. Mark C. Murphy, God’s Own Ethics: Norms of Divine Agency and the Argument From Evil[REVIEW]Nevin Climenhaga - 2020 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 17 (5):587-590.
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  17. How Not to Render an Explanatory Version of the Evidential Argument From Evil Immune to Skeptical Theism.Daniel Howard-Snyder - 2015 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion (3):1-8.
    Among the things that students of the problem of evil think about is whether explanatory versions of the evidential argument from evil are better than others, better than William Rowe’s famous versions of the evidential argument, for example. Some of these students claim that the former are better than the latter in no small part because the former, unlike the latter, avoid the sorts of worries raised by so-called “skeptical theists”. Indeed, Trent Dougherty claims to (...)
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  18. The Neutralization of Draper-Style Evidential Arguments From Evil.William Lauinger - 2014 - Faith and Philosophy 31 (3):303-324.
    This paper aims to neutralize Draper-style evidential arguments from evil by defending five theses: (1) that, when those who advance these arguments use the word “evil,” they are referring, at least in large part, to ill-being; (2) that well-being and ill-being come as a pair (i.e., are essentially related); (3) that well-being and ill-being are best understood in an at least partly objectivist way; (4) that (even partial) objectivism about well-being and ill-being is best understood as implying (...)
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  19. An Apophatic Response to the Evidential Argument From Evil.Brown Joshua Matthan - 2017 - International Journal of Philosophy and Theology 78 (4-5):485-497.
    I argue that Christian apophaticism provides the most powerful and economical response to the evidential argument from evil for the non-existence of God. I also reply to the objection that Christian apophaticism is incoherent, because it appears to entail the truth of the following contradiction: it is both possible and impossible to know God’s essential properties. To meet this objection, I outline a coherent account of the divine attributes inspired by the theology of the Greek Father’s and (...)
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  20. The Divine Ethic and the Argument From Evil.Jeff Jordan - 2018 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 10 (4):193-202.
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  21.  90
    Nick Trakakis The God Beyond Belief: In Defence of William Rowe's Evidential Argument From Evil. . Pp. Xvii+373. ISBN 10 1 4020 5144 1. [REVIEW]Bruce Langtry - 2008 - Religious Studies 44 (3):363-367.
    Trakakis's book consists of meticulous scholarship in the history of nearly thirty years’ work on God and evil, focused on the publications of William L. Rowe, and accompanied by acute, original criticism. I point out that Trakakis needs to do more work in order to sustain what he says in relation to natural evil.
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  22.  65
    The Argument From Non-Belief: THEODORE M. DRANGE.Theodore M. Drange - 1993 - Religious Studies 29 (4):417-432.
    Attempts have been made to prove God's non-existence. Often this takes the form of an appeal to the so-called Argument from Evil: if God were to exist, then he would not permit as much suffering in the world as there actually is. Hence the fact that there is so much suffering constitutes evidence for God's non-existence. In this essay I propose a variation which I shall call ‘The Argument from Non-belief’. Its basic idea is that (...)
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  23. Argument From Chance.Dariusz Łukasiewicz - 2015 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 7 (1):199--207.
    In the article, first I present the atheistic argument from pointless evil and the argument from chance. The essence of the argument from chance consists in the incompatibility of the existence of purposeless events and the existence of a God who planned the universe to the last detail. Second, I would like to show that there is a relation between the evidential argument from evil and the argument from (...)
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  24. An Atheistic Argument From Ugliness.Scott F. Aikin & Nicholaos Jones - 2015 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 7 (1):209-217.
    The theistic argument from beauty has what we call an 'evil twin', the argument from ugliness. The argument yields either what we call 'atheist win', or, when faced with aesthetic theodicies, 'agnostic tie' with the argument from beauty.
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  25. The Arguments From Confusion and Biblical Defects (2006).Theodore Drange - manuscript
    Many have said that God is hidden. This alleged hiddenness is particularly troublesome for evangelical Christianity, much more so than generally recognized, for it would render certain facts about the world and about the Bible very hard to explain on the hypothesis that the God of evangelical Christianity exists. Those facts would be best explained by appeal to the alternate hypothesis that that deity does not exist. Three evidential, epistemic, atheological arguments emerge from this consideration. One of them is (...)
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  26. Encountering Evil: The Evil-God Challenge From Religious Experience.Asha Lancaster-Thomas - unknown - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 12 (3):0-0.
    It is often thought that religious experiences provide support for the cumulative case for the existence of the God of classical monotheism. In this paper, I formulate an Evil-god challenge that invites classical monotheists to explain why, based on evidence from religious experience, the belief in an omnipotent, omniscient, omnibenevolent god is significantly more reasonable than the belief in an omnipotent, omniscient, evil god. I demonstrate that religious experiences substantiate the existence of Evil-god more so than (...)
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  27. Avoiding the Afterlife in Theodicy: Victims of Suffering and the Argument From Usefulness.Robert Simpson - 2008 - Forum Philosophicum: International Journal for Philosophy 13 (2):213-227.
    Contemporary proponents of theodicy generally believe that a theodical reply to the evidential argument from evil must involve some appeal to the afterlife. In Richard Swinburne's writings on theodicy, however, we find two arguments that may be offered in opposition to this prevailing view. In this paper, these two arguments - the argument from usefulness and the argument from assumed consent - are explained and evaluated. It is suggested that both of these arguments (...)
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  28.  46
    The Extremely Persuasive Argument From Human Behavior.Eric Demaree - 2019 - Kingman, Arizona: Fellowship Books.
    Three qualities of “The Argument from Human Behavior” make it superior to other arguments for God. First, this argument discovers a universal indirect perception of God that everyone has many times every day: the fact that we all take seriously our sense of “wrong” (our sense of everyone’s moral obligations). Second, this argument reveals that the Biblical God claims He is the legislator of the moral laws in our mind. Third, it understands that discovering God will (...)
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  29.  63
    From Conceivability to Existence and Then to Ethics: Parmenides' Being, Anselm's God and Spinoza's Rejection of Evil.Evangelos D. Protopapadakis - 2013 - Journal of Classical Studies MS 15:149-156.
    Classical Greek philosophy in its struggle to grasp the material world from its very beginning has been marked by the – sometimes undercurrent, some others overt and even intense, but never idle – juxtaposition between the mind and the senses, logos and perception or, if the anachronism is allowed, between realism and idealism. Parmenides is reportedly the first philosopher to insistently assert that thought and being are the same by his famous aphorism τὸ γὰρ αὐτὸ νοεῖν ἐστί τε καὶ (...)
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  30. Logical Problems of Evil and Free Will Defences.Graham Oppy - 2017 - In Chad Meister & Paul Moser (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to the Problem of Evil. Cambridge, UK: pp. 45-64.
    In this paper, I offer a novel analysis of logical arguments from evil. I claim that logical arguments from evil have three parts: (1) characterisation (attribution of specified attributes to God); (2) datum (a claim about evil); and (3) link (connection between attributes and evil). I argue that, while familiar logical arguments from evil are known to be unsuccessful, it remains an open question whether there are successful logical arguments from (...). (shrink)
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  31. God, Evil, and Suffering.Daniel Howard-Snyder - 1999 - In Michael Murray (ed.), Reason for the Hope Within. Eerdmans. pp. 217--237.
    This essay is aimed at a theistic audience, mainly those who are new to thinking hard about the problem of evil.
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  32. Evil and Evidence.Matthew A. Benton, John Hawthorne & Yoaav Isaacs - 2016 - Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion 7:1-31.
    The problem of evil is the most prominent argument against the existence of God. Skeptical theists contend that it is not a good argument. Their reasons for this contention vary widely, involving such notions as CORNEA, epistemic appearances, 'gratuitous' evils, 'levering' evidence, and the representativeness of goods. We aim to dispel some confusions about these notions, in particular by clarifying their roles within a probabilistic epistemology. In addition, we develop new responses to the problem of evil (...)
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  33. How to Solve the Problem of Evil: A Deontological Strategy.Justin Mooney - 2019 - Faith and Philosophy 36 (4):442-462.
    One paradigmatic argument from evil against theism claims that, (1) if God exists, then there is no gratuitous evil. But (2) there is gratuitous evil, so (3) God does not exist. I consider three deontological strategies for resisting this argument. Each strategy restructures existing theodicies which deny (2) so that they instead deny (1). The first two strategies are problematic on their own, but their primary weaknesses vanish when they are combined to form the (...)
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  34. The Problem of Evil - A Socratic Dialogue.Brent Silby - 2017 - Cafe Philosophy.
    Epicurus asked: “Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?” This Socratic dialogue, suitable to an introductory audience, explores a popular version of the argument from evil.
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  35. The Problem of Evil - A Socratic Dialogue.Brent Silby - manuscript
    Epicurus asked: “Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?” This Socratic dialogue explores a popular version of the Argument From Evil. Suitable as an introduction to the topic.
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  36. Non-Moral Evil and the Free Will Defense.Kenneth Boyce - 2011 - Faith and Philosophy 28 (4):371-384.
    Paradigmatic examples of logical arguments from evil are attempts to establish that the following claims are inconsistent with one another: (1) God is omnipotent, omniscient and wholly good. (2) There is evil in the world. Alvin Plantinga’s free will defense resists such arguments by providing a positive case that (1) and (2) are consistent. A weakness in Plantinga’s free will defense, however, is that it does not show that theism is consistent with the proposition that there are (...)
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  37. The Psychology of Evil: A Contribution From Psychoanalysis.Michael Lacewing - 2009 - In Pedro Alexis Tabensky (ed.), The Positive Function of Evil. Palgrave-Macmillan.
    It has often been noted that evil – by which I mean evil in human motivation and action – is difficult to understand. We find it hard to make sense of what ‘drives’ a person to commit evil. This is not because we cannot recognise or identify with some aspect of the psychology of evil; we all experience feelings of envy, spite, cruelty, and hatred. But somehow this shared experience can seem insufficient, and we are left (...)
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  38. Every Man has His Price: Kant's Argument for Universal Radical Evil.Jonas Jervell Indregard - 2022 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 65 (4):414-436.
    ABSTRACT Kant famously claims that we have all freely chosen evil. This paper offers a novel account of the much-debated justification for this claim. I reconstruct Kant’s argument from his affirmation that we all have a price – we can all succumb to temptation. I argue that this follows a priori from a theoretical principle of the Critique of Pure Reason, namely that all empirical powers have a finite, changeable degree, an intensive magnitude. Because of this, (...)
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  39. Learning From Arguments: An Introduction to Philosophy.Daniel Z. Korman - 2022 - The PhilPapers Foundation.
    Learning from Arguments advances accessible versions of key philosophical arguments, in a form that students can emulate in their own writing, and with the primary aim of cultivating an understanding of the dynamics of philosophical argumentation. -/- The book contains ten core chapters, covering the problem of evil, Pascal’s wager, personal identity, the irrationality of fearing death, free will and determinism, Cartesian skepticism, the problem of induction, the problem of political authority, the violinist argument, the future-like-ours (...), the ethics of eating meat, utilitarianism (both act and rule), and the trolley problem. Additionally, there is an introductory chapter explaining what arguments are and surveying some common argumentative strategies, an appendix on logic explaining the mechanics and varieties of valid arguments, and an appendix providing detailed advice for writing philosophy papers. -/- Each of the ten core chapters offers a sustained argument for some controversial thesis, specifically written for an audience of beginners. The aim is to introduce newcomers to the dynamics of philosophical argumentation, using some of the arguments standardly covered in an introductory philosophy course, but without the additional hurdles one encounters when reading the primary sources of the arguments: challenging writing, specialized jargon, and references to unfamiliar books, philosophers, or schools of thought. (shrink)
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  40. Defusing the Common Sense Problem of Evil.Chris Tweedt - 2015 - Faith and Philosophy 32 (4):391-403.
    The inductive argument from evil to the non-existence of God contains the premise that, probably, there is gratuitous evil. Some skeptical theists object: one's justification for the premise that, probably, there is gratuitous evil involves an inference from the proposition that we don't see a good reason for some evil to the proposition that it appears that there is no good reason for that evil, and they use a principle, "CORNEA," to block (...)
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  41. Is the Problem of Evil a Deontological Problem?Justin Mooney - 2017 - Analysis 77 (1):79-87.
    Recently, some authors have argued that experiences of poignant evils provide non-inferential support for crucial premisses in arguments from evil. Careful scrutiny of these experiences suggests that the impermissibility of permitting a horrendous evil might be characterized by a deontological insensitivity to consequences. This has significant implications for the project of theodicy.
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  42. The Problem of Evil and Replies to Some Important Responses.Bruce Russell - 2018 - European Journal for Philosophy of Religion 10 (3):105-131.
    I begin by distinguishing four different versions of the argument from evil that start from four different moral premises that in various ways link the existence of God to the absence of suffering. The version of the argument from evil that I defend starts from the premise that if God exists, he would not allow excessive, unnecessary suffering. The argument continues by denying the consequent of this conditional to conclude that God (...)
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  43.  59
    Evil Beyond the Burden of Belief. [REVIEW]Graham Oppy - 2000 - Philo 3 (2):104-107.
    Review of *Suffering Belief: Evil and the Anglo-American Defence of Theism* (by Andrea Weisberger). This paper was originally published at the Secular Web; it was later published in *Philo*. Details here are to the publication in *Philo*.
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  44. Procreative Ethics and the Problem of Evil.Jason Marsh - 2015 - In Sarah Hannan, Samantha Brennan & Vernon Richard (eds.), Permissible Progeny? The Morality of Procreation and Parenting. Oxford University Press. pp. 65-86.
    Many people think that the amount of evil and suffering we observe provides important and perhaps decisive evidence against the claim that a loving God created our world. Yet almost nobody worries about the ethics of human procreation. Can these attitudes be consistently maintained? This chapter argues that the most obvious attempts to justify a positive answer fail. The upshot is not that procreation is impermissible, but rather that we should either revise our beliefs about the severity of global (...)
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  45.  63
    Causal Connections, Logical Connections, and Skeptical Theism: There Is No Logical Problem of Evil.Perry Hendricks - forthcoming - Religions.
    In this paper, I consider Sterba’s recent criticism of skeptical theism in context of his argument from evil. I show that Sterba’s criticism of skeptical theism shares an undesirable trait with all past criticisms of skeptical theism: it fails. This is largely due to his focus on causal connections and his neglect of logical connections. Because of this, his argument remains vulnerable to skeptical theism.
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  46. The Equivocal or Question-Begging Nature of Evil Demon Arguments for External World Skepticism.Mylan Engel - 2005 - Southwest Philosophy Review 21 (1):163-178.
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  47. Is Theism Compatible with Gratuitous Evil?Daniel Howard-Snyder & Frances Howard-Snyder - 1999 - American Philosophical Quarterly 36 (2):115 - 130.
    We argue that Michael Peterson's and William Hasker's attempts to show that God and gratuitous evil are compatible constitute miserable failures. We then sketch Peter van Inwagen's attempt to do the same and conclude that, to date, no one has shown his attempt a failure.
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  48. Introducing the Problem of Evil.Peter Hutcheson - 1999 - Teaching Philosophy 22 (2):185-194.
    This paper addresses several reasons why students may be uninterested or unwilling to engage with the problem of evil and discusses a method of teaching it which overcomes these difficulties. This strategy, first, distinguishes between evil and gratuitous evil. This prevents students from thinking that the task of theodicy is fulfilled by a reconciliation of God with mundane evil . Second, the goal of theodicy is framed as the reconciliation of God with the appearance of (...)
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  49. Evil as Privation and Leibniz's Rejection of Empty Space.Stephen Puryear - 2016 - In Wenchao Li (ed.), Für Unser Glück oder das Glück Anderer: Vortrage des X. Internationalen Leibniz-Kongresses, vol. 3. Georg Olms. pp. 481-489.
    I argue that Leibniz's treatment of void or empty space in the appendix to his fourth letter to Clarke conflicts with the way he elsewhere treats (metaphysical) evil, insofar as he allows that God has created a world with the one kind of privation (evil), while insisting that God would not have created a world with the other kind of privation (void). I consider three respects in which the moral case might be thought to differ relevantly from (...)
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  50. Four-Dimensionalism, Evil, and Christian Belief.Ryan Mullins - 2014 - Philosophia Christi 16 (1):117-137.
    Four-dimensionalism and eternalism are theories on time, change, and persistence. Christian philosophers and theologians have adopted four-dimensional eternalism for various reasons. In this paper I shall attempt to argue that four-dimensional eternalism conflicts with Christian thought. Section I will lay out two varieties of four-dimensionalism—perdurantism and stage theory—along with the typically associated ontologies of time of eternalism and growing block. I shall contrast this with presentism and endurantism. Section II will look at some of the purported theological benefits of adopting (...)
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