In episode 13 of the podcast, Dr. Michael Rota and I continue our conversation on Pascal’s Wager. Is it sound? In his updated version, the evidence for Christianity plays a crucial role in the Wager. His version only works if Christianity is at least as likely true as false. Then, and only then, says Dr. Rota, does the Wager make rational sense.
As a reminder, Dr. Rota has written a book entitled Taking Pascal’s Wager where he updates Pascal’s Wager and defends it against the biggest objections. If sound, Dr. Rota’s version of the Wager makes it reasonable to commit to God even if you’re just 50% sure of his existence, thus, lowering the bar for Natural Theology.
Dr. Michael Rota
Dr. Rota has been on the philosophy faculty at the University of St. Thomas (Minnesota) since 2005. As of Sept 2018, he’s Professor of Philosophy at UST and a Program Officer at the Templeton Religion Trust. In his recent book Taking Pascal’s Wager, he gives an extended argument for the reasonableness and desirability of Christian commitment. From 2010-2016, he and Dean Zimmerman co-organized the St. Thomas Summer Seminars in Philosophy of Religion and Philosophical Theology. He is currently doing preliminary research for a book on slavery and religion, in which he and the sociologist Kevin Bales will be writing together.
Check out his website here.
Episode 13 continues our discussion of Pascal’s Wager by turning to the evidence in support of Christianity. Episode 12, if you recall, laid out the argument and then defended it against common objections.
Due to time constraints (and the fact that I share my studio space with my beautiful wife), we couldn’t really dive deep into the evidence. We did, however, discuss Dr. Rota’s preferred response to the multiverse objection to the Fine-tuning argument. Really, and I mean really, fascinating stuff. Toward the end of the episode I attempt to challenge Dr. Rota’s argument by role-playing an unconvinced skeptic.
Links mentioned during the show:
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