David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Philo 8 (1):5-11 (2005)
There are three possible situations regarding createable possible worlds: (1) there is a best possible world of that sort; (2) there are two or more unsurpassably good worlds of that sort; (3) there is an infinite series of significantly and increasingly better possible createable worlds. Rowe argues that if (1) is true then, if God exists, he does not deserve our praise or gratitude for doing what he could not fail to do, namely, create the best possible world. With this I agree. He argues that if (2) is true, then God does not deserve our praise or gratitude either, because it did not matter which of these worlds he created. I disagree with Rowe here arguing that we can be grateful for being alive even if there is an equally good possible world where we do not exist. Rowe also argues that if (3) were true, God could not exist, for (3) would allow that there is some being greater than God, which is impossible. I also disagree with Rowe about what follows from (3): God could not create the worst of the best worlds in the infinite series of increasingly better worlds, but he could create some extremely good world in that series without that possibility implying that there could be some being greater than God
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