Should We Want God to Exist?

Abstract
Whether God exists is a metaphysical question. But there is also a neglected evaluative question about God’s existence: Should we want God to exist? Very many, including many atheists and agnostics, appear to think we should. Theists claim that if God didn’t exist things would be far worse, and many atheists agree; they regret God’s inexistence. Some remarks by Thomas Nagel suggest an opposing view: that we should want God not to exist. I call this view anti-theism. I explain how such view can be coherent, and why it might be correct. Anti-theism must be distinguished from the argument from evil or the denial of God’s goodness; it is a claim about the goodness of God’s existence. Anti-theists must claim that it’s a logical consequence of God’s existence that things are worse in certain respects. The problem is that God’s existence would also make things better in many ways. Given that God’s existence is likely to be impersonally better overall, anti-theists face a challenge similar to that facing nonconsequentialists. I explore two ways of meeting this challenge
Keywords God  Thomas Nagel  Value Theory
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DOI 10.1111/j.1933-1592.2010.00426.x
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References found in this work BETA
Philosophical Explanations.Robert Nozick - 1981 - Harvard University Press.
Problems of the Self.Bernard A. O. Williams - 1973 - Cambridge University Press.
The Last Word.Thomas Nagel - 1997 - Oup Usa.

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Citations of this work BETA
Our Cosmic Insignificance.Guy Kahane - 2013 - Noûs 47 (2):745-772.
In Defense of Irreligious Bioethics.Timothy F. Murphy - 2012 - American Journal of Bioethics 12 (12):3-10.
The Value Question in Metaphysics.Guy Kahane - 2012 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 85 (1):27-55.
Antipathy to God.G. R. McLean - 2015 - Sophia 54 (1):13-24.

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