Archive for November, 2012

November 30th, 2012

Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week

by Max Andrews

I would like to ask all of you to wear purple at least once this week for Crohn’s and Colitis awareness week. As some of you know, I’ve been in a tough battle with the disease for a while now and I’ve been in chronic pain since last summer. For more on my story please see my links:

Originally blogged at My Journey With Crohns.

As a result of a federal bill introduced by Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) and Congressman Andrew Crenshaw (R-FL-4) (passed in 2011 [LINK: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/sres199/text], Congress declared December 1-7 to be Crohn’s and Colitis Awareness Week to educate Americans about the diseases and encourage people to join in the effort to find a cure for IBD. This resolution was passed in thanks to some great Senators and Representatives who cosponsored it including:
·      Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS)
·      Senator Jack Reed (D-RI)
·      Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
·      Senator Patty Murray (D-WA)
·      Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY)
read more »

November 28th, 2012

The New Moral Argument

by Max Andrews

The following is an argument David Baggett developed, which argues for the existence of a perfectly moral person. I used this in the VT debate on the existence of God. (I highly recommend Baggett’s book co-authored with Jerry Walls Good God: The Theistic Foundations of Morality.) This version of the moral argument is an abductive version. I believe this argument, when used in an abductive form, is the strongest form of the argument. You’ll usually see it in a deductive form, a la William Lane Craig. I believe this argument is better and I’d like to see it used more often. (See below for my method behind abduction.)

The advantage of this argument is that nature is included in the argument for the morally perfect person. Usually it is depicted as nature vs. God (or a morally perfect person). That argument, I believe, gives too much to the naturalist. Here’s the argument:

  1. There are objective axiological/moral facts that obtain.
  2. Either the world alone or the world and a perfectly moral person best explain these facts.
  3. It is the case that the world and a perfectly moral person best explain these facts.
  4. Therefore, the world and a perfectly moral person best explain these facts.
    read more »

November 26th, 2012

Call for Papers on the Philosophy of Science and Science

by Max Andrews

This is a call for papers to be submitted to me for online publication with Sententias. I’m looking for about ten papers. Please include an abstract and Turabian format. The paper can be a minimum of 4 pages but there’s not maximal limit. I will compile the papers and put them in the first volume and issue of the Sententias Journal (Free online PDF file). This is just to kickstart more activity for Sententias to take part in. Depending on the feedback and participation we can make this a peer-reviewed process so we can have some respectable esteem. But, for now, we need to start modestly. Theists, atheists, Christians, evolutionists, and intelligent design proponents are all welcome. Here are a few suggested options:

  • What’s a scientific theory?
  • What’s a scientific explanation?
  • Breaking down a particular interpretation of quantum physics.
  • Brak down a model of cosmological origins.
  • Argue for Darwinism
  • read more »

  • November 26th, 2012

    New Paper: The History and Macro-Ontology of the Many Worlds Interpretation of Quantum Physics

    by Max Andrews

    In 1956 Hugh Everett III published his Ph.D. dissertation titled “The Theory of the Universal Wave Function.”  In this paper Everett argued for the relative state formulation of quantum theory and a quantum philosophy, which denied wave collapse. (DOWNLOAD HERE)

    Initially, this interpretation was highly criticized by the physics community and when Everett visited Niels Bohr in Copenhagen in 1959 Bohr was unimpressed with Everett’s most recent development.[1] In 1957 Everett coined his theory as the Many Worlds Interpretation (MWI) of quantum mechanics.  In an attempt to circumvent the problem of defining the mechanism for the state of collapse Everett suggested that all orthogonal relative states are equally valid ontologically.[2]  What this means is that all-possible states are true and exist simultaneously.

    November 26th, 2012

    I’m Okay, You’re Okay

    by Max Andrews
    The following is a guest blog post by Mike “MoonDog” Burnette…
    ________
    I It’s probably just me, but even as a Christian I occasionally have feelings of inadequacy. For whatever reason unable to convince myself at the deepest level, on any full-time basis, of my own self-worth. Inadequate to my job, inadequate to my boss, inadequate to my wife, and inadequate to myself. Perhaps that is why I was a radio DJ for nearly 30 years; showing off in front of others to have my own shaky feelings of self-confidence affirmed from the outside. “How’s that working for you?!” Shut-up Dr. Phil this is my article.
    For the most it’s better now due to my trust in God and maturity. The evidence of my value and efficacy has mounted up to the point I find it harder to sustain feeling of worthlessness. But, we’re all human, yes? Here’s what I recommend when these feelings of inadequacy strike you. Whether you’re a philosopher, teacher, preacher, or speaker–remember that we all get them. They bear little relationship to reality, so treat them like an annoying co-worker, to be endured for a while, until it passes in its own time. Through years of spiritual growth, maturation, and recognition, I’ve become quite comfortable with who I am. I don’t desire as much adulation now, but I do believe God has gifted me with abilities that I’m responsible for. That’s why I want to provide free media feedback to evangelist-apologists.
    I suppose I’ll have to live with these unexpected, and often disconcerting feelings for the rest of my life. I suspect I’m not alone.

    Mike “MoonDog” Burnette started the Apologetics Media Centre with a vision of educating and raising up future generations of effective, media savvy evangelist-apologists. Allow this ministry to coach and provide feedback for your media presentations. Follow me on Twitter: @MoonDogBurnette

    November 22nd, 2012

    The Metaphysical Consistency of Applying Daniel Dennett’s Ultimate Bootstrapping to Post Big Bang Scenarios

    by Max Andrews

    I recently wrote a paper for my course on the philosophy of physics. I decided to title my research, “The Metaphysical Consistency of Applying Daniel Dennett’s Ultimate Bootstrapping to Post Big Bang Scenarios.” Believe me, I devoted a long time towards this paper. I think I succeeded in my task. Although, maybe if I worked on it longer it would have been different. Nonetheless, I believe I’ve demonstrated the metaphysical consistency of Dennett’s bootstrapping. Please download the paper in the link below. (You may need to click it a second time.)

    The Metaphysical Consistency of Applying Daniel Dennett’s Ultimate Bootstrapping to Post Big Bang Scenarios

    November 20th, 2012

    The Magician’s Twin: CS Lewis on Scientism

    by Max Andrews

    November 19th, 2012

    The Top 40 Philosophers of the Last 200 Years

    by Max Andrews

    Below is a list of the top forty philosophers within the last 200 years. The tally was composed of 600 votes.  On a side note, I’m quite please to see David Lewis making it up to 13 and C. S. Peirce at 20.

    1. Ludwig Wittgenstein  (Condorcet winner: wins contests with all other choices)
    2. Gottlob Frege  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 261–160
    3. Bertrand Russell  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 280–137, loses to Gottlob Frege by 218–156
    4. John Stuart Mill  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 280–135, loses to Bertrand Russell by 204–178
    5. W.V.O. Quine  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 291–150, loses to John Stuart Mill by 214–198
    6. G.W.F. Hegel  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 290–130, loses to W.V.O. Quine by 214–210
    7. Saul Kripke  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 314–138, loses to G.W.F. Hegel by 224–213
    8. Friedrich Nietzsche  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 290–117, loses to Saul Kripke by 209–207
    9. Karl Marx  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 359–95, loses to Friedrich Nietzsche by 254–138
    10. Soren Kierkegaard  loses to Ludwig Wittgenstein by 358–124, loses to Karl Marx by 230–213
    read more »

    November 17th, 2012

    “God and the Multiverse” EPS 2012 Paper

    by Max Andrews

    David Beck and I recently presented a paper on God and the multiverse at the annual Evangelical Philosophical Society conference in Milwaukee, WI on November 14, 2012. In this paper we argue that if a multiverse exists then it is harmonious with theism. Not only do we argue that it’s compatible with theism but we develop a distinctly Christian approach to it. We trace the idea of many worlds back to the pre-Socratics, which contributed to a theistic framework. We use Thomas Aquinas, Leibniz, Kant, Clement of Alexandria, Origen, and others to create a Christian model of modal realism. We have called our model “Thomistic Modal Realism.” We plan on explicating the paper and submitting it for publication soon. Please feel free to comment and leave feedback in the comment section. Any and all appropriate/substantive feedback will help us strengthen our model.

    November 12th, 2012

    This Week’s Annual EPS Conference

    by Max Andrews

    Tomorrow morning Leah and I will be flying out to Milwaukee, WI for the annual Evangelical Philosophical Society conference at the Hyatt Regency. I have coauthored a paper with Dave Beck titled “God and the Multiverse.” In it we develop a new model of modal realism, what we call Thomistic Modal Realism. Below is the abstract of our paper.

    Wednesday 14 Nov.
    10.10—10.50 (Hyatt Executive B)
    W. David Beck
    Max L. E. Andrews
    (Liberty University)
    God and the Multiverse

    Recent developments in quantum physics postulate the existence of some form of multiverse.  We will argue that a cosmology of many worlds is not novel either to philosophy or to theism.  The multiverse is not a monolithic concept and we will refer to and use the four levels of categorization proposed by Max Tegmark.  We will trace the idea of a multiverse back to the pre-Socratics, Plato and Aristotle in order to initially demonstrate its fit with a concept of God.