Hi there. I'm a PhD student researching the personality differences between atheists and Christians. I'm currently in need of more male churchgoers to participate. If you fit this description and have about 20 minutes, please visit: http://www.godsurvey.org. Thanks.
I have a new blog post on why atheists can't really be sure of anything they believe. It might be helpful. Check it out at: http://dontforgettothink.blogspot.com/2012/08/how-to-show-evolution... and good luck with your research!
For what it is worth, EAAN has been pretty roundly refuted over the years. It is not a new argument, or a compelling one - and not because people don't understand or want to deal with logic - but because of flaws in Plantinga's argument (his argument only works under very carefully constructed situations, not reality).
And most of the rest of it rests in solipsism - which has its own attendant problems.
Also - yeesh - thread necro. I didn't notice the date on the OP - sorry.
Really? By whom? Have you read the debate between Dennett and Plantinga? It seems like EAAN is pretty sound. If it's not too much trouble, could you summarize the best argument against it? I would be very interested in knowing that!
Yes, I just realized how old the thread is too. Whoops.
Arguing to uncertainty, for one, is a basic fallacy.
Also, he neglects to mention that even if his argument is sound, his metaphysical/supernaturalism has the same uncertainty worry. That is, his counter theory is equally flawed, by his own same argument.
Additionally, and more completely, Paul Draper has a good argument here:
With that said - this discussion is probably better held in the Great Debate - than on the main boards.
Thanks, I'll check that out. However, I think you may be misunderstanding what Plantinga is saying. He's not saying we can't trust our truth-seeking faculties. He is not arguing to uncertainty. Quite to the contrary, he is saying that we can trust our faculties, that they do fulfill their apparent purpose of seeking the truth, and therefore, because of the (still un-refuted) E. A. A. N., naturalism is not the best explanation.
If the naturalism hypothesis were veridical, then we could never know it. As Churchland (certainly not a "creationist") has said, on naturalism "Truth, whatever that is, takes the hindmost."
Does that makes sense?
*Quick edit: Just to clarify one step further, Plantinga's argument is only susceptible to inscrutability if naturalism is true. Since we can trust our truth-seeking faculties (a fact vigorously defended by naturalists such as Dennett), this indicates that naturalism is not true. We would have to go to great lengths to deny both our common sense and the usefulness of the scientific method to affirm naturalism--something I doubt you or I would be willing to do.
EAAN on Wikipedia. Did not read the whole thing; it's late. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolutionary_argument_against_naturalism
I was weirded out by the use of probability (!) in metaphysics. Lewis did a better job, I think -- but as I said, didn't read it all.
Probability in metaphysics is weird, from the resident applied maths kid. Granted, I don't put much weight into social studies anymore because for every conclusion, there's another study to refute it.