Re: Evil ? (was: Hypostases (was: Natural Order & Belief)

From: Brent Meeker <>
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 2006 13:02:37 -0800

Tom Caylor wrote:
> I tried to address everything but ran out of time/energy. If there is
> something I deleted from a previous post that I cut out that you wanted
> me to address, just bring it back up.
> Bruno Marchal wrote:
>> Le 26-d c.-06, 19:54, Tom Caylor a crit :
>> >
>> > On Dec 26, 9:51 am, Bruno Marchal <> wrote:
>> >> Le 25-d c.-06, 01:13, Tom Caylor a crit :
>> >>
>> >> > The "crux" is that he is not symbolic...
>> >
>> >>
>> >> I respect your belief or faith, but I want to be frank, I have no
>> >> evidences for the idea that "Jesus" is "truth", nor can I be sure of
>> >> any clear meaning such an assertion could have, or how such an
>> >> assertion could be made scientific, even dropping Popper falsification
>> >> criteria. I must say I have evidences on the contrary, if only the
>> >> fact
>> >> that humans succumb often to wishful thinking, and still more often to
>> >> their parents wishful thinking.
>> >>
>> >
>> > If you are not sure of any clear meaning of the personal God being the
>> > source of everything, including of course truth, this entails not
>> > knowing the other things too.
>> Is that not an authoritative argument?
>> What if I ask to my student an exam question like give me an argument
>> why the square root of 3 is irrationnal. Suppose he gives me the
>> correct and convincing usual (mathematical) proof. I could give him a
>> bad note for not adding: "and I know that is the truth because truth is
>> a gift by God".
>> Cute, I can directly give bad notes to all my students, and this will
>> give me more time to find a falsity in your way to reason ...
> Just to clear this up, my above statement was not meant to be an
> argument. I purposefully used the word "entail" rather than "imply". I
> wasn't saying that you cannot believe in some kind of truth without
> believing in the personal God. However is makes sense *from my
> perspective* (of belief in the personal God) that you do not have a
> basis for any truth on which personhood can be based, which *from my
> perspective* (which I *have* been arguing for in general) needs more
> than the impersonal core.
>> The card records facts. To judge them historical is already beyond my
>> competence. Why the bible? Why not "the question of king Milinda" ?
> My approach on the Everything List has been to argue for the necessity
> of the personal God as the ultimate basis for Everything. If someone
> wants to research the historical record sufficiently to convince
> themselves one way or another about the Bible or Jesus' resurrection,
> that's great, and I can give them some sources, but it's probably too
> contingent for this List. But I do have response to your comment on
> universal-ness below.
>> > My whole argument is that without it our hope eventually runs out and
>> > we are left with despair,

Speak for yourself.

>> unless we lie to ourselves against the
>> > absence of hope.

So are you lying to yourself because otherwise you would despair?

>> Here Stathis already give a genuine comment. You are just admitting
>> your argument is "wishful thinking".
> I was being too poetic ;) By "despair" I meant nihilism, the belief
> that there ultimately is no meaning. I am arguing that the ultimate
> source of meaning has to be personal. I'm just saything that my
> argument is of the form, "If meaning is not ultimately based on the
> personal God, then there is no true meaning, because..."

If meaning is personal, and I'm a person, then I create meaning. To postulate a personal God to supply "ultimate" personal meaning seems otiose. It's like the first-cause argument for God. If God can exist uncaused then why not stop the regress with an uncaused universe - which has the additional advantage of obviously existing.

Brent Meeker

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Received on Fri Dec 29 2006 - 16:04:48 PST

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