Research Update

Clearly I haven’t written a complete new paper in a little while, but that is because I’ve been stuck in the library doing research for stuff that I’m working on right now, as well as preparing for upcoming conference presentations. So anyways, for those of you interested in what I’m currently working on, as in right now, as in “I’m taking a break from writing the paper to write this blog post,” here is a little bit of info for you.
The paper that I’m currently working on is a short version of what I hope will eventually become a chapter of my dissertation. This paper will be approximately 3,000 words (just so that I can try to submit it for the 2014 WCPA) but will then be expanded to about double the length to serve as a chapter. This paper ultimately argues for the existence of an actual multiverse. Anyways, this paper puts forth several claims, some that I argue for and some that I take for granted. The first claim is that the possession of, and ability to exercise, free-will is the greatest possible good. I argue for this by pointing out real-world examples of justice/punishment, and morality and ethics. I argue that all punishments are simply attempts to limit our abilities of exercising free-will. I also argue that no matter what ethical school of thought you belong to, all things being equal, the greatest moral consideration is always given to the being that displays the greatest amount of free-will. While neither of these prove that free-will is the greatest possible good, they certainly show the high value that we place on it, and that is ought to be thought of as a plausibly being the greatest possible good.
I then go on to claim that God is an all-loving and perfectly-good being. I take this for granted. I do offer that my interpretation of this, however, if this is true then God is required to create a maximally good universe. If we accept that free-will is the greatest possible good then this entails that God create a universe that exhausts all possible free-choices, since each free choice is inherently good. The reason He must exhaust all possible free-choices is because the goodness of free-will cannot be measured qualitatively, it must be measured quantitatively, so only a world with a maximal amount of actualized free choices can be maximally good.
Finally, I argue that a single universe cannot possibly exhaust all possible free choices, and thus cannot be maximally good. While it may satisfy a goodness threshold, and be good on the whole, God is required to create a maximally good universe, and only a multiverse model can satisfy that. That all I’ll say on this point because that is where I stopped writing the paper. More to come!


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