Tuesday, March 29, 2005

le parcours

I'm late in posting this, but here is part of Polymath's latest Koraqi post:

...things are looking up over here. The bad guys have quieted down considerably. Of course, you might not realize it from reading the news, but the fact is, mortar attacks and the like are much more infrequent and the bad guys are getting more and more desperate. There's alot of factors involved, but basically, the decent people of Iraq are getting sick of them and ratting them out more and more often.

Neil Barker uses a hilarious "beer run" analogy to describe the relationship between North and South Korea.

Check out this lady's shirt expressing certain feelings about Bush.

Dr. Vallicella writes an interesting post on the relationship between mental quiet and salvation. He also refuses to create a "potty-mouthed and otherwise uncategorizable bloggers" category so I can fit on his sidebar.

Bill takes on his friend Keith Burgess-Jackson re: the argument from evil. Bill has a point: not all theists conceive of God in terms of the three "omni"s. Rabbi Harold Kushner is perhaps the most famous example: in his When Bad Things Happen to Good People, he paints a picture of a God who is potent but not omnipotent.

My own trouble with certain theistic philosophers' conception of God centers on their conviction that God has one huge limitation-- the inability to perform the logically impossible. How does this dovetail, then, with the question of miracles, which are traditionally conceived of as violations of the laws of physics? (To be clear about what definition I'm working from: If an occurrence is merely improbable, it's not miraculous. A miracle cannot be explained by anything but divine intervention. Think: the sun [or earth's rotation] stopping for three days, or a dude walking on water, or someone being raised after being four days' dead.) Miracles, being physical violations, are mathematically impossible. Math is surely logical (I don't know enough about Henri Poincaré's work to comment on fuzzier aspects of math), yes? If a miracle happens, isn't it effectively a violation of logic? If so, how do certain theistic philosophers maintain that God cannot do the logically impossible?


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