Chapter

Inductive Logic and the Probability that God Exists: Farewell to Sceptical Theism

Michael Tooley

in Probability in the Philosophy of Religion

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780199604760
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191741548 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199604760.003.0008
Inductive Logic and the Probability that God Exists: Farewell to Sceptical Theism

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Suppose that the world contains n events, each of which is such that, judged in the light of the totality of known rightmaking and wrongmaking properties, it would be morally wrong for anyone to allow the event in question. What is the logical probability — given only that evidence — that at least one of those n events is such that the totality of the rightmaking and wrongmaking properties, both known and unknown, of allowing that event makes that action morally wrong? Answering this question is the task of this chapter and it requires a rigorous application of inductive logic. It is shown that a Carnapian, structure-description approach entails that the probability must be less than(1n+1). But the existence of such an event is logically incompatible with the existence of God, and so the probability that God exists, relative to evidence of the sort described, must be less than (1n+1).

Keywords: Carnap; inductive logic; logical probability; structure description; rightmaking property; wrongmaking property

Chapter.  11083 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Religion

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