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Watch Craig’s Cartoon on this: http://www.reasonablefaith.org/transcript-moral-argument  and start posting! William Lane Craig’s online article: “CAN WE BE GOOD WITHOUT GOD?” http://www.reasonablefaith.org/can-we-be-good-without-god 

(1) Explain why William Lane Craig thinks the question, “Can we be good without God?” is different and more fundamental than

the following three questions on page 134: (a) Must we believe in God in order to live moral lives?; (b) Can we recognize objective moral duties without believing in God; and (c) Can we formulate a system of ethics without referring to God?  Just focus on one of the three questions in your answer.  (See Chapter 6–viz. pp.134-135) and do your best to use mini-quotes and give us page numbers so we can look it up ourselves.)

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(2) Why does William Lane Craig (and theists like Aristotle, Aquinas and atheists like Friedrich Nietzsche, Jean-Paul Sartre, Michael Ruse etc.) think that we can’t be good without God?  Summarize his argument as you would to a friend or a family member in around 200 words or more.  [If you want, practice on a friend and post your friend’s reaction to the argument here]. 

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(3) Survey your own moral beliefs.  Do you think human beings really have inherent value or is our value simply instrumental (and a fiction like the value of our paper money)?  Can we know that it is really wrong to rape and murder and to be mean to kids (i.e. can we discover universal moral principles and our duites to others)?  Are your moral beliefs best explained by social convention, personal preference, naturalistic evolution, or God’s design of this power of awareness in your mind/soul? 

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(4) (Craig, p. 133) “Try to come up with an atheist’s argument to defend the idea that forcible copulation is morally wrong for humans but not for sharks.  How would you reply?” 

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(5) In Craig’s Chapter 6 (pp. 135-146) he gives four atheistic responses to his Moral Argument. Out of those four, which one do you think is the best atheistic response to the moral argument in your mind.  Explain this atheistic response to Craig.  How does Craig argue it doesn’t work? Does Craig successfully show this objection to be false? Why or why not?  Use mini-quotes from the text to support your view.  

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(6) Do we have free will?  If Naturalism (scientific atheism) is true, we came into existence by matter rearranging (Darwinian evolution) over millions of years.  We are physical organisms and strange powers like free will and the ability to discover spiritual/nonphysical things like good and evil are powers that complex meat machines do not have.  Matter is bound by the laws of nature (chemistry and physics).  If we have free will, we need a non-physical (spiritual) soul so that we are not bound (determinied) by the laws of chemistry and physics.  On Naturalism, our free will is just an illusion produced by evolutionary processes.  What do you think?  Do we have free will?   This is another argument for God’s existence that we will explore next week, but give your initial thoughts now.  If you had to choose, would you give up your belief in naturalistic evolution or your belief in free will?  Which view do you have more justification for believing (scientists or your own experience)? 

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(6) Choose one of the SEVEN PROBLEMS on the instructor’s document (skip to page 10 and 11) and see this problem that the Naturalist (scientific atheist) has in explaining our moral intuitions.  Give the problem and the atheist response.  Tell us if you think the atheist’s response is intellectually and emotionally satisfying and why. 

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(7) Where does the data lead you in your philosophical investigation?  Which worldview (Theism or Naturalism) best explains the data we see in ethics?

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(8) PERSONAL QUESTION:  Describe the best night you’ve had in the last year (keep it PG).  Mine was going to see Motley Crue’s FINAL TOUR in Cincinnati with friends from high school and college. 

IMPORTANT QUESTION:  How can you rearrange your life so you check the Discussion Board 5 – 6 days a week?  Check in the morning before you look at Facebook or Instagram? Download the Blackboard app to your phone?  Hit SUBSCRIBE each week to the DB forums so each of your classmates’ posts is sent to your email?  Brainstorm.  If we don’t start posting by Tuesday or Wednesday and continue the discussion until Sunday (skipping a day or two in between), we will not get good DB grades and learn the material. 

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PHIL220—-DB7 was first posted on September 16, 2020 at 7:47 pm.
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