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Volume 50 • Number 4

October 2013



 

Can God Satisfice?


by Klaas Kraay


Three very prominent arguments for atheism are (1) the argument from sub-optimality, (2) the problem of no best world, and (3) the evidential argument from gratuitous evil. To date, it has not sufficiently been appreciated that several important criticisms of these arguments have all relied on a shared strategy. Although the details vary, the core of this strategy is to concede that God either cannot or need not achieve the best outcome in the relevant choice situation, but to insist that God must and can achieve an outcome that is good enough. In short, this strategy invokes divine satisficing in response to these arguments for atheism. (The widespread use of this strategy may have gone unnoticed because the appeal to divine satisficing is usually implicit.) In sections 13, the three arguments for atheism will be set out, and it will be shown that the relevant replies all employ this shared strategy. Section 4 will show that those who invoke divine satisficing have failed to establish that this is a coherent notion. Accordingly, these replies to three important arguments for atheism are, at present, incomplete.


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ISSN: 2152-1123