•  20
    Onward Christian Philosophers
    Philosophia Christi 21 (1): 11-15. 2019.
    Christian philosophers have engaged naturalism in three main ways: direct refutation; systematic comparison; and sustained development of compelling alternative accounts. While all of these options have value, I argue that it is, and especially, that are most likely to win converts, and that we are witnessing an encouraging strategic shift in that direction. Options and bring Christian philosophers into closer dialogue with their naturalistic counterparts, building mutual respect and a greater o…Read more
  •  1
    Guest Editor’s Introduction
    Philosophia Christi 15 (2): 233-238. 2013.
  •  8
    Neuroscience, Rationality, and Free Will
    Philosophia Christi 15 (1): 81-96. 2013.
    John Searle claims that reasoning requires libertarian free will. He hopes this can be reconciled with a naturalistic neuroscience through a sophisticated theory of emergence, which includes indeterminism, and topdown causation. This is allegedly naturalistic because each mental state is causally reducible to a realizing neuronal state. I argue that Searle’s theory fails to overcome four main problems and cannot account for reasoning without implicit appeal to nonnaturalistic entities.
  •  2
    Debating Christian Theism
    Philosophia Christi 16 (2): 451-456. 2014.
  •  2
    Knowledge of Abstracta
    Philosophia Christi 18 (1): 7-27. 2016.
    I argue that materialism is unable to account for knowledge deriving from such abstracta as rules of inference, algorithms, and the ideals of infinity, perfection, and eternity. Both reductive and nonreductive materialism subscribe to the causal closure of the physical world, which implies that a creature’s concepts derive exclusively from the interactions of brains with the physical environment. These resources do not explain the acquisition of abstract concepts or the successful use of these c…Read more
  •  13
    The First-Person Perspective Is Not a Mere Mental Property
    Philosophia Christi 20 (1): 67-72. 2018.
    Lynne Rudder Baker maintained that persons are essentially constituted by a first-person perspective. But she argued that this perspective is only an emergent property: it does not require a mental substance. In this paper, I argue that the first-person perspective cannot be a mere mental property, because it presupposes the existence of a mental substance. This makes it incoherent to claim that possession of a first-person perspective is what makes an individual a person. And, intentionality, w…Read more
  •  11
    Introduction to Symposium on Dualism and Physicalism
    Philosophia Christi 20 (1): 7-11. 2018.
    Routinely dismissed as a defeated position, substance dualism has seen a resurgence. This is partly due to a persistent failure of reductive physicalism to capture mental phenomena and to the instability of nonreductive alternatives. But it is also due to the return of the subject to center stage in the philosophy of mind and to the rich diversity of historical and contemporary theories of the soul. It is therefore time for a serious reevaluation of the merits of substance dualism by both dualis…Read more
  •  2
    Downward causation is controversial in the philosophy of mind. Some materialists argue that such causation is impossible because it violates the causal closure of the physical; is incompatible with natural law; and cannot be reconciled with the empirical evidence from neuroscience. This paper responds to these objections by arguing that there is no good reason to believe that the physical is causally closed; properly understood, natural laws are compatible with downward causation; and recent fin…Read more
  • A Causal Analysis of the Intensionality of Rationalizing Explanations
    Dissertation, The University of Wisconsin - Madison. 1989.
    A naturalistic theory of rationalization is defended against a fundamental objection. The theory claims that: The rationalizing relation can be fully analysed in causal explanatory terms. However, is rendered problematic by the fact that: Rationalizations exhibit a higher degree of intensionality than ordinary physical causal explanations. To show that can be maintained in the face of , I develop an account of on which and may be reconciled. ;The opening chapter gives an account of the intension…Read more
  • Intelligent Design, Darwinism, and Psychological Unity
    Philosophia Christi 10 (1): 119-136. 2008.
    Folk psychology affirms the existence of a persistent, unitary self at the center of each individual’s mental life. Darwinian psychologists have challenged this view with the selfish gene and selfish meme theories of the mind. Both theories claim that cognition arises from the interaction of blind, selfish replicators and that the enduring self is an illusion. I argue that both theories suffer from an implausible atomism and an inability to explain human reasoning, subjectivity, points of view, …Read more
  •  7
    The ontological argument from reason aims to show that deliberative reasoning cannot be located in a naturalistic ontology, because such reasoning requires a unified, enduring self with libertarian free will. The most popular way of avoiding this argument is to claim that some version of naturalistic compatibilism suffices for human reason, because even in a world of event causation, some creatures may be responsive to reason. In this paper, I argue that the best versions of this approach either…Read more
  •  21
    Darwinism and its Discontents
    Faith and Philosophy 26 (4): 464-467. 2009.
  •  229
    The scope of observation
    Philosophical Quarterly 45 (178): 60-69. 1995.
  • Book Review (review)
    Philosophia Christi 6 (2): 378-382. 2004.