Toronto Philosophy of Religion Work-in-Progress Group
August 25, 2016 — 10:27

Author: Klaas Kraay  Category: News Uncategorized  Tags: , , ,   Comments: 0

For the past few years, I have organized a lively philosophy of religion work-in-progress group at Ryerson University in downtown Toronto.

– If you would like to be added to the mailing list for this group, please email me: kraay@ryerson.ca

– If you are (or plan to be) in the Toronto area this semester, and would like to present a paper to this group, please let me know.

– If you would like to present a paper to this group via Skype this semester,  please let me know. (We have an 80″ screen in our department’s meeting room!)

Klaas Kraay
Department of Philosophy
Ryerson University
www.ryerson.ca/~kraay

Toronto Philosophy of Religion Work-in-Progress Group
January 5, 2016 — 14:03

Author: Klaas Kraay  Category: News  Tags: , , ,   Comments: 0

For the past few years, I have organized a lively philosophy of religion work-in-progress group at Ryerson University in downtown Toronto.

– If you would like to be added to the mailing list for this group, please email me: kraay@ryerson.ca

– If you are (or plan to be) in the Toronto area this semester, and would like to present a paper to this group, please let me know.

– If you would like to present a paper to this group via Skype this semester (we have an 80″ screen in our department’s meeting room!) please let me know.

Klaas Kraay
Department of Philosophy
Ryerson University
www.ryerson.ca/~kraay

Toronto Philosophy of Religion Work-in-Progress Group
August 24, 2015 — 4:20

Author: Klaas Kraay  Category: News  Tags: , , ,   Comments: 0

For the past few years, I have organized a lively philosophy of religion work-in-progress group at Ryerson University in downtown Toronto.

– If you would like to be added to the mailing list for this group, please email me: kraay@ryerson.ca

– If you are (or plan to be) in the Toronto area this semester, and would like to give a paper to this group this upcoming academic year, please let me know.

– If you would like to give a paper to this group via Skype this upcoming academic year (we have the technology!) please let me know.

Klaas Kraay
Department of Philosophy
Ryerson University
www.ryerson.ca/~kraay

Research Fellowship in Philosophy of Religion
February 16, 2015 — 20:37

Author: Klaas Kraay  Category: News  Tags: ,   Comments: 0

This is a second call for applications for a Research Fellowship in the Philosophy of Religion to be held during either the Summer 2015 or the Fall 2015 semester.

This fellowship is funded by a generous research grant (from the John Templeton Foundation) entitled “Theism: An Axiological Investigation”.

Junior, mid-career, and senior philosophers are all welcome to apply.

For more details and application instructions, please visit the project website: www.ryerson.ca/~kraay/theism.html

Applications are due on March 31st, 2015.

Klaas Kraay
Department of Philosophy
Ryerson University
www.ryerson.ca/~kraay

A Multiverse Solution?
January 9, 2015 — 11:15

Author: Michael Almeida  Category: Existence of God Problem of Evil  Tags: , ,   Comments: 51

The multiverse solution to the problem(s) of evil (and the problem of suboptimality) is a systematic response to these problems, and one that is fairly popular. Still, lot’s of people have argued against the view (see, for instance, Monton, 2010, Almeida, 2008, 2010) and some use multiverses for other purposes (see O’Connor, 2008). For a nice overview of multiverse approaches (and bibliographic citations) see Klaas Kraay here.

The thought, according to multiverse theorists, is that God necessarily actualizes a possible world W that includes lots of cosmoi, or lots of universes, U0, U1, . . ., Un. All of the universes are actual, so the multiverse is not a pluriverse (for instance, it is not a Lewisian pluriverse). The universes “chosen” (don’t take this too literally) for actualization are the universes (of those worlds) that include an on balance positive value. It is of course a much longer story, and I would argue that it is probably not a coherent story (and, further, not the story that multiverse theorists think they are telling), but this is the basic multiverse thought.

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Research Fellowship in Philosophy of Religion
January 6, 2015 — 10:07

Author: Klaas Kraay  Category: News  Tags: ,   Comments: 0

This is a call for applications for a Research Fellowship in the Philosophy of Religion to be held during either the Summer 2015 or the Fall 2015 semester.

This fellowship is funded by a generous research grant (from the John Templeton Foundation) entitled “Theism: An Axiological Investigation”.

Junior, mid-career, and senior philosophers are all welcome to apply.

For more details and application instructions, please visit the project website: www.ryerson.ca/~kraay/theism.html

Applications are due on March 31st, 2015.

 

Klaas Kraay
Department of Philosophy
Ryerson University
www.ryerson.ca/~kraay

God and the Multiverse: A Workshop (Ryerson University February 15-16, 2013)
February 7, 2013 — 9:44

Author: Yujin Nagasawa  Category: News  Tags: , , ,   Comments: 0

On behalf of Klaas Kraay
God and the Multiverse: A Workshop
Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada
February 15-16, 2013

Website: www.ryerson.ca/~kraay/multiverse.html
All are welcome to attend.
Please register online at the website mentioned above.
There is no registration fee.
Brief Description:
In recent decades, there has been tremendous growth in scientific theories which postulate the existence of many universes beyond our own. Once considered outré or patently absurd, multiverse theories now appear to be gaining scientific respectability. That said, the details and implications of each one are hotly contested.
In the philosophy of religion, multiverse theories are usually discussed in connection with the fine-tuning argument for the existence of God. In its simplest form, this argument runs as follows. If certain features of the universe had been slightly different, the universe would not have been capable of generating and sustaining life. This apparent “fine-tuning”, some say, is best explained by positing an intelligent designer. Critics have countered that multiverse theories undermine this argument. If there indeed are vastly many universes which vary – perhaps randomly – in the relevant parameters, they say, then it is not at all surprising that at least one universe is life-permitting. In this debate, then, multiverse theories are typically offered as naturalistic rivals to theism.
Yet, in a surprising twist, several philosophers have recently offered various reasons for thinking that, if theism is true, there are many universes. Rather than being deemed rivals to theism, then, multiverses are here deemed to be consequences of theism. Moreover, some philosophers have argued that a theistic multiverse model can even help to defend theism against prominent arguments for atheism, including the problem of evil and the problem of no best world. All of these claims are controversial, and a body of literature has recently developed around them.
This workshop aims to thoroughly assess the idea that a multiverse is, in some sense or other, to be expected if theism is true. The presenters (ten philosophers and two physicists) will consider the philosophical, scientific, and theological dimensions of this idea.
If you have questions, please contact the workshop organizer, Klaas Kraay, at kraay@ryerson.ca.

Is the multiverse consisting of all worthy universes the best multiverse?
June 30, 2011 — 11:15

Author: Alexander Pruss  Category: Uncategorized  Tags: , , , ,   Comments: 42

Say a universe is worthy iff it’s worth creating.  Let M be the multiverse containing all and only the worthy possible universes.  Is M the best multiverse?  Here is an argument to the contrary.  Somewhere in M, there will be an infinite sequence of universes u1,u2,…, with u2 better than u1, u3 better than u2, and so on, such that these universes differ from one another only in the magnitude of a single minor evil.  For concreteness, suppose that in each of these universes, there is a counterpart of me who has a mosquito bite that doesn’t affect his life.  In u1, the bite itches for one hour.  In u2, it itches for half an hour.  In u3, for a quarter of an hour.  And that’s the only difference.  (Maybe this happens during a time in the person’s life where he does nothing but itch or not itch, and later he forget this time.)  Call the universes from this sequence u-universes.

Now, let M* be a multiverse containing all and only the worthy possible universes other than u1.
If M is the best multiverse, M has to be better than M*.  But this is far from clear.  There is a one-to-one correspondence f between the universes of M and M*, where universes that aren’t in the sequence u1,u2,… correspond to themselves (f(u)=u), while f(u1) = u2, f(u2) = u3, and so on.  Then, for any universe u in M, either f(u)=u, or f(u) is just like u, except that my counterpart have a shorter length of itching from the mosquito bite in u than in f(u).  How can M be better than M*, then?
Well, M is surely not aggregatively better.  How could it be, given the correspondence?  We describe the difference between M and M* as follows: M is just like M*, except that if anything it has some more itching.  
So if it is better, it must be in virtue of a non-aggregative value.  The best proposal, which Klaas Kraay made in response to my arguments in the previous multiverse post, is that M maximally exemplifies the value of diversity.  But notice that M and M* exemplify the same diversity of goods.  The only difference is that M exemplifies a greater diversity of bads: it contains a u-universe with my counterpart having an hour of itching from the relevant bite, while M* does not contain that u-universe.  However, both M and M* contain the same countable infinity of u-universes, and they contain all the same diversity of goods from the u-universes and the non-u-universes.

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