The Argument from Collections

In J. Walls & T. Dougherty (eds.), Two Dozen (or so) Arguments for God: The Plantinga Project. New York: Oxford University Press. pp. 29-58 (2018)
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Abstract

Very broadly, an argument from collections is an argument that purports to show that our beliefs about sets imply — in some sense — the existence of God. Plantinga (2007) first sketched such an argument in “Two Dozen” and filled it out somewhat in his 2011 monograph Where the Conflict Really Lies: Religion, Science, and Naturalism. In this paper I reconstruct what strikes me as the most plausible version of Plantinga’s argument. While it is a good argument in at least a fairly weak sense, it doesn’t initially appear to have any explanatory advantages over a non-theistic understanding of sets — what I call set theoretic realism. However, I go on to argue that the theist can avoid an important dilemma faced by the realist and, hence, that Plantinga’s argument from collections has explanatory advantages that realism does not have.

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Christopher Menzel
Texas A&M University

Citations of this work

Natural Theology and Religious Belief.Max Baker-Hytch - forthcoming - In Jonathan Fuqua, Tyler Dalton McNabb & John Greco (eds.), The Cambridge Handbook of Religious Epistemology. Cambridge, UK:
Grim Variations.Fabio Lampert & John William Waldrop - 2021 - Faith and Philosophy 38 (3):287-301.

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