Explanatory Atheism

Philo 11 (1):78-92 (2008)
Quentin Smith has recently explored and defended two different atheistic accounts of the origin of the universe. Both have been proposed as alternatives to the traditional theistic account. The first postulates that a zero-dimensional timeless point is the cause of the universe. The second postulates that the universe is self-caused, in the sense that each of its instantaneous parts is caused by some other instantaneous part, and the existence of the parts logically entails the existence of the whole. I offer a number of reasons why these attempts at explanatory atheism are not altogether satisfactory. In reply to the first I argue that it is implausible to think that a nomologically simple entity could cause something with the physical properties of the big bang. In reply to the second I argue that the existence of the parts of the universe does not logically entail the universe as a whole, and so we cannot understand the universe to be self-caused
Keywords Philosophy and Religion
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 1098-3570
DOI 10.5840/philo20081114
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
Edit this record
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Mark as duplicate
Request removal from index
Revision history
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 32,688
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Added to PP index

Total downloads
20 ( #285,560 of 2,237,262 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
3 ( #186,360 of 2,237,262 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads
My notes
Sign in to use this feature