March 2011

Is it All Just Relative?

Clearly some things are relative. Tastes in food or matters of etiquette, for example. If I like single malt scotch and you don’t, there’s no basis for saying that one of us is right and the other is wrong about how good it tastes. Taste is just relative to our individual taste buds. Same thing seems true of etiquette – except that etiquette is relative to cultures or subcultures rather than to individual people.

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Free Will

There's a long history of philosophers worrying about whether we’re really free. One of the first worries was whether we can be free, given God’s alleged omniscience, which seems to mean He knows what we are going to do before we do it. Take yourself back to the time when God expelled Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, for disobeying him and eating from the apple tree. Suppose you travel back in time, and offer your services to Adam and Eve as a defense attorney. What would you say?

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