Stoic Philosophy: Free Will (Video)

My Stoic Philosophy video series explores the philosophical tradition of Stoicism with goals to inform, empower, and help others benefit from the practical wisdom of Ancient Greek, Roman, and modern thinkers. I tackle many topics including handling adversity, finding meaning in life, working toward contentment, dealing with change, anger, and gratitude.

In this video, I revisit notes from a recent Stoic Philosophy discussion group concerning free will I hosted with the Humanist Association of Greater Philadelphia in Willow Grove, PA. I talk about individual issues within the umbrella of free will in reference to passages from Stoic writings exploring what may be outside of our control and inside our control; habits and changing habits; means to attain goals; and the possibility of changing thoughts and behaviors to better live; and much more.

As always, free free to comment below and/or on the YouTube video itself. Like, share, subscribe, and consider donating if you support my efforts.

See more Stoic Philosophy content I’ve uploaded in my YouTube playlist here.

I will be hosting a Stoic Philosophy discussion group on the topic of friendship on May 21, 2017. More details are here.

Another discussion with Pastor Dan Nichols

I recently spoke with Pastor Dan Nichols whose church, Restored Church in Wilkes-Barre, received national media attention following its display of a billboard reading “I Love Sex” – God.

In a recorded audio clip, we speak about the billboard, sex, sexuality, marriage, abortion, politics, marketing Jesus, Christian belief, atheism, philosophy, and much more.

Consider also watching our first recorded discussion — an open-to-the public conversation which took place in Restored Church — here. Also consider reading some of my recent pieces which are follow-ups (1, 2, 3) to the discussion we had.

As always, feel free to comment below and/or on the YouTube video.

Theological fatalism – Part three: Answering objections

This post is the final post in my three-part series concerning the problem of theological fatalism – namely that an omniscient being and free will are incompatible. My first post in the series explained the groundwork for the problem and the second explained the implications of the problem.

This series was started to expand on one of the arguments I presented in my “Does God Exist?” debate with Catholic philosopher Dr. Ronda Chervin (PhD, Fordham) which can be streamed via Livestream or watched on Youtube.

I may respond to new objections or further clarify in future posts. Happy reading and, as always, feel free to comment. Read More

Theological Fatalism – Part Two: The implications

This is the second post of a three part series concerning the problem of theological fatalism – the seeming incompatibility between an omniscient being, God, and free will. This series was started to expand on one of the arguments I presented in my “Does God Exist?” debate with Catholic philosopher Dr. Ronda Chervin (PhD, Fordham) which can be streamed via Livestream or watched on Youtube. Listening to the debate before reading this post would be helpful. Reading the first post in this series is essential for understanding of this post and the third in the series. Past three, answering objections, is now available here.

The implications

The problem of theological fatalism poses an interesting dilemma for believers in an omniscient being, God, and free will. If an omniscient being exists, there can be no free will. If there is free will, there can be no omniscient being. An omniscient being would know all truths about the future and could not possibly be incorrect; if any of the being’s beliefs were falsified, it would not be omniscient…and none of these true beliefs, of course, could be falsified. Read More

Theological Fatalism – Part One: The problem

Last week, I had debated Catholic philosopher Dr. Ronda Chervin (PhD, Fordham) concerning the topic “Does God Exist?” Watch the debate here.

One of the three arguments I put forth in my opening statement was the problem of theological fatalism. I argued that since free will and an omniscient being are incompatible, and since my opponent believes God granted free will, God does not exist.

I did not have time to provide a long and detailed explanation of the problem of theological fatalism because of the debate’s short format and my decision to provide three arguments in my ten minute opening statement. I used a portion of my ten minutes to provide a short version of the problem in the persuasive context of the debate. As a result of the short explanation, some who had watched the debate were confused.

I will be authoring a series of three blog posts this week, adapted from a previous post I had authored, further explaining the problem of theological fatalism and responding to objections largely drawing on Richard Taylor’s book “Metaphysics.”

This first post will set the groundwork for the problem of theological fatalism by explaining fatalism and why fatalism seems to follow from an omniscient being existing. I will also provide a fictional account of fatalism — vis-a-vis the story of Osmo — adapted from Richard Taylor’s book. The second post will focus on the implications of theological fatalism and the third will respond to objections. Both posts are now available. Read More