Mapping the Kalam: How to Contribute

by Luke Muehlhauser on July 18, 2009 in How-To,Kalam Argument


My project to map the Kalam Cosmological Argument is a massive research project. It is also, perhaps, a historic one. Nobody has ever mapped a philosophical argument like this before, with hundreds of arguments and counter-arguments considered in detail and mapped by virtue of their logical connection. Because of its usefulness, I rather hope this technique will catch on.

If you’d like to be part of this project, here’s how you can contribute:

  • Leave comments. Dozens of people have already commented with (1) clarifications, (2) links to related resources, (3) counter-arguments, (4) corrections, and so on. These are all very helpful. Leave more comments!
  • Send me emails. Some people have sent me their thoughts on the KCA by email, which is fine. I’m lukeprog on Gmail.
  • Lend your expertise. A few highly trained people – for example a mathematician and a physicist – have offered to answer any questions I have about their subjects of expertise. This is extremely useful. If you are a trained philosopher, mathematician, or physicist, and would like to occasionally answer a question or two relating to the KCA, I would love to get your help.
  • Send me articles. Many thanks to everyone who has sent me a PDF of an academic paper related to the KCA. Keep them coming! (See the bibliography and take note of which ones I don’t yet have.)
  • Write a guest post. I do accept submissions for guest posts on the KCA. To be accepted, I suggest you (1) use fewer than 5000 words, (2) write in plain talk, (3) use footnotes or hyperlinks where appropriate, and (4) write something useful about the KCA. The first guest post on the KCA was Craig’s First Premise in 1979 and 2009, by Dave Chaffee.
  • Graphic / media design. As my graphical argument map grows, I would love to have a designer spice it up, improve its layout, etc. Perhaps it could also be converted into other formats – a Flash animation or PowerPoint presentation, for example.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

curious February 10, 2010 at 4:43 pm

TeoreticalBullshit has a unique take on the question:


piero February 11, 2010 at 10:13 am

curious: TeoreticalBullshit has a unique take on the question:  

Well, that was bloody brilliant, I thought. Thank you for the link.

Something else that bothers me about Craig’s take on the Kalam argument: why is an actual infinity impossible, but an actual nothingness possible? I find the idea of an actual “nothing” just as implausible as the idea of an actual infinity. Our concept of “nothing” usually means “nothing of interest to me right now”, as when we say “there’s nothing in this box” knowing full well that there are plenty of things in the box. Is the extrapolation of the word “nothing” to describe the absence of anything at all justified? Do we have any experiences of “nothingness”? Has “nothing” ever been observed?


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