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Dan Linford [9]Daniel Linford [5]
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Dan Linford
Purdue University
  1. God, the Meaning of Life, and a New Argument for Atheism.Jason Megill & Daniel Linford - 2016 - International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 79 (1):31-47.
    We raise various puzzles about the relationship between God and the meaning of life. These difficulties suggest that, even if we assume that God exists, and even if God’s existence would entail that our lives have meaning, God is not and could not be the source of the meaning of life. We conclude by discussing implications of our arguments: these claims can be used in a novel argument for atheism; these claims undermine an extant argument for God’s existence; and they (...)
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  2. Idolatry, Indifference, and the Scientific Study of Religion: Two New Humean Arguments.Daniel Linford - 2018 - Religious Studies:1-21.
    We utilize contemporary cognitive and social science of religion to defend a controversial thesis: the human cognitive apparatus gratuitously inclines humans to religious activity oriented around entities other than the God of classical theism. Using this thesis, we update and defend two arguments drawn from David Hume: (i) the argument from idolatry, which argues that the God of classical theism does not exist, and (ii) the argument from indifference, which argues that if the God of classical theism exists, God is (...)
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  3. On the Unimportance of Theistic Belief.Jason L. Megill & Daniel Linford - 2017 - Essays in the Philosophy of Humanism ; Vol 25, No 2 25 (2):187-207.
    We first argue that there are cases of “blameless non-belief.” That is, some people—through no fault of their own—fail to enter into a conscious relationship with God. But if so, then it would be unjust of God to make certain particular goods depend upon one having a conscious relationship with God. So, given that God is just, then despite what some theists believe, a relationship with God cannot be a necessary condition for the attainment of these goods; there might, e.g., (...)
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  4. Cognitive Bias, the Axiological Question and the Epistemic Probability of Theistic Belief.Dan Linford & Jason Megill - 2018 - In Mirosław Szatkowski (ed.), Ontology of Theistic Beliefs. De Gruyter. pp. 77-92.
    Some recent work in philosophy of religion addresses what can be called the “axiological question,” i.e., regardless of whether God exists, would it be good or bad if God exists? Would the existence of God make the world a better or a worse place? Call the view that the existence of God would make the world a better place “Pro-Theism.” We argue that Pro-Theism is not implausible, and moreover, many Theists, at least, (often implicitly) think that it is true. That (...)
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  5. The Problems of Divine Hiddenness and Divine Inscrutability.Dan Linford - forthcoming - In Graham Oppy & Joseph W. Koterski (eds.), Theism and Atheism: Opposing Viewpoints in Philosophy. Cengage.
    This is a forthcoming section for the book "Theism and Atheism: Opposing Arguments in Philosophy", edited by Graham Oppy, Gregory Dawes, Evan Fales, Joseph Koterski, Mashhad Al-Allaf, Robert Fastiggi, and David Shatz. I was asked to write a brief essay on divine hiddenness and divine inscrutability. I argue that theism is trapped between two opposite poles. On one end, we encounter an argument developed by John Schellenberg. God is understood as a being who, in virtue of God's perfect love, would (...)
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  6. God, Geography, and Justice.Dan Linford & William Patterson - 2015 - Essays in the Philosophy of Humanism 23 (2):189-216.
    The existence of various sufferings has long been thought to pose a problem for the existence of a personal God: the Problem of Evil. In this paper, we propose an original version of POE, in which the geographic distribution of sufferings and of opportunities for flourishing or suffering is better explained if the universe, at bottom, is indifferent to the human condition than if, as theists propose, there is a personal God from whom the universe originates: the Problem of Geography. (...)
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  7.  13
    The Kalām Cosmological Argument Meets the Mentaculus.Dan Linford - 2020 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science:axaa005.
    According to the orthodox interpretation of bounce cosmologies, the universe was born from an entropy-reducing phase in a previous universe. To defend the thesis that the whole of physical reality was caused to exist a finite time ago, Craig and Sinclair have argued the low-entropy interface between universes should instead be understood as the beginning of two universes. Here, I present Craig and Sinclair with a dilemma. On the one hand, if the direction of time is reducible, as friends of (...)
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  8.  90
    An All Too Radical Solution to the Problem of Evil: A Reply to Harrison.Dan Linford - 2018 - Sophia 57 (1):157-171.
    Gerald Harrison has recently argued the evidential problem of evil can be resolved if we assume the moral facts are identical to God’s commands or favorings. On a theistic metaethics, the moral facts are identical to what God commands or favors. Our moral intuitions reflect what God commands or favors for us to do, but not what God favors for Herself to do. Thus, on Harrison’s view, while we can know the moral facts as they pertain to humans, we cannot (...)
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  9.  86
    Naturalistic and Theistic Explanations of the Distribution of Suffering.Dan Linford - forthcoming - In Graham Oppy & Joseph W. Koterski (eds.), Theism and Atheism: Opposing Viewpoints in Philosophy. Cengage.
    This is a forthcoming section for the book "Theism and Atheism: Opposing Arguments in Philosophy", edited by Graham Oppy, Gregory Dawes, Evan Fales, Joseph Koterski, Mashhad Al-Allaf, Robert Fastiggi, and David Shatz. I was asked to write a brief essay on whether naturalism or theism can successfully explain the distribution of suffering in our world. Wheras another section covers the possibility that suffering is evidence against theism, my essay is concerned only with the ability for either naturalism or theism to (...)
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  10. Early-Modern Irreligion and Theological Analogy: A Response to Gavin Hyman’s A Short History of Atheism.Dan Linford - 2016 - Secularism and Nonreligion 5 (1):1-8.
    Historically, many Christians have understood God’s transcendence to imply God’s properties categorically differ from any created properties. For multiple historical figures, a problem arose for religious language: how can one talk of God at all if none of our predicates apply to God? What are we to make of creeds and Biblical passages that seem to predicate creaturely properties, such as goodness and wisdom, of God? Thomas Aquinas offered a solution: God is to be spoken of only through analogy (the (...)
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  11.  4
    Big Bounce or Double Bang? A Reply to Craig & Sinclair on the Interpretation of Bounce Cosmologies.Daniel Linford - forthcoming - Erkenntnis.
    On the orthodox interpretation of bounce cosmologies, a preceding universe was compressed to a small size before "bouncing" to form the present expanding universe. William Lane Craig and James Sinclair have argued that the orthodox interpretation is incorrect if the entropy reaches a minimum at the bounce. In their view, the interface between universes represents the birth of two expanding universes, i.e., a ``double bang'' instead of a ``big bounce''. Here, I reply to Craig and Sinclair in defense of the (...)
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  12.  52
    On Computable Metaphysics: On the Uses and Limitations of Computational Metaphysics.Jason Megill & Dan Linford - 2018 - In Mirosław Szatkowski (ed.), Ontology of Theistic Beliefs. De Gruyter. pp. 93-112.
    Humans constantly produce strings of characters in symbolic languages, e.g., sentences in natural languages. We show that for any given moment in human history, the set of character strings that have been produced up to that moment, i.e., the sum total of human symbolic output up to that moment, is finite and so Turing computable. We then prove a much stronger result: a Turing machine can produce any particular set of symbolic output that we could possibly have produced. We then (...)
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  13.  36
    On the Unimportance of Theistic Belief.Jason L. Megill & Daniel Linford - 2017 - Essays in the Philosophy of Humanism 25 (2):187-207.
    We first argue that there are cases of “blameless non-belief.” That is, some people—through no fault of their own—fail to enter into a conscious relationship with God. But if so, then it would be unjust of God to make certain particular goods depend upon one having a conscious relationship with God. So, given that God is just, then despite what some theists believe, a relationship with God cannot be a necessary condition for the attainment of these goods; there might, e.g., (...)
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  14.  2
    Review: A Short History of Atheism. [REVIEW]Dan Linford - 2015 - Secularism and Nonreligion 4 (1):1-2.
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