Tuesday, April 28, 2015


One can only analyze the state of the world for so long, eventually one comes to the point where they must take action, but the problem is knowing what action we should take, hence the question (after we have analyzed the problem) is what we should do to fix it? What is the solution to the danger we have observed? How do we prevent the possible outcome of a tragic future?

This is precisely the context in which I sent the following letter to Professor Kliman:

Dear Dr. Kliman, I think a serious question that needs to be asked, in light of the situation that confronts us; in light of the circumstances in which we find ourselves, is what people should do?

If you would be kind enough to give some advice concerning this question I would be most grateful.

For my part I can only see the practicality of one thing: the people have lost their power because they have no unity, which is the very essence and substance of power. The only solution to this is to unify the people around simple goals (what I would call non-ideological goals). And of course, these goals must be simple or else the people would fracture; unity would be destroyed by schism.

A few days ago I believed that our only hope was to rebuild the labour movement from the ground up. The reason I believe it must be built from the ground up, is because the present status of unions is nearly identical to that of corporations, tragically and metaphorically speaking, the unions are run by greedy and spineless politicians. At one time this was not the case, but now the world has become obsessed with profit, competition has infected everything. We can do better than this, we need a movement, not of political leaders, but a movement of the common people. However, in light of your recent work I am questioning the veracity of this strategy.

Long before I was even aware of your work I had come to the conclusion that "reforms," within the system of capital, would eventually be nullified by the nature of capital. I fully agree with you that we must transcend the system, but the question is how? How do we go from theory to practice? What are the practical steps that people can take to protect themselves from the tyranny of capital? How do we obtain liberation?

Thank you for considering my questions.

Respectfully yours,
Jersey Flight

Dear Jersey, thank you for your letter. I keep getting asked this. I discuss political practice in my book "The Failure of Capitalist Production," but since my conception of political practice is so different from what people seem to be accustomed to, they don’t even recognize that I’ve done so.

Let me quote some of what I said about political tasks, in chapter 9 of the book, and then summarize briefly:

1. “Especially during the current slump and its aftermath, working people certainly need to make demands on employers and the governments of their countries and see to it that these demands are met. … By getting their demands met, working people help themselves in the short run. They are getting concessions from the system. However … the concessions they win are just that, concessions, not a new set of progressive policies that will lead to a prosperous and stable economy.”

2. “Working people will have to fight tooth-and-nail just to prevent their living and working conditions from deteriorating further, in the face of efforts to restore profitability and economic growth through austerity measures.”

3. “Working people need to be prepared to confront the fact that their struggles to protect themselves in the face of the economic slump are not in the system’s interests, and that successful struggle might well set off a virulent reaction. And they need to be prepared to confront the reaction. But they will not be prepared if they have been led to believe the trickle-up notion that what’s good for the working class is good for capitalist America.”

4. “It is one thing to recognize the instability of capitalism, but another to show that an alternative to it is possible. … It is time to recognize that the question, ‘Like what, exactly?’ [as a response to the desire for something other than capitalism] is an honest and profound question that demands straight and worked-out answers. And it is time to start working out those answers.”

5. “people need to know not just what to be against, but what to be for, not just ‘what is to be done,’ but what is to be undone—what is it exactly that must be changed in order to have a viable and emancipatory socialism?”

6. “I think two main things are needed to move beyond this situation. First, we have to recognize that the emancipation of working people must be their own act. … There needs to be a new relation of theory to practice, so that regular people are not just the muscle that brings down the old power, but become fully equipped, theoretically and intellectually, to govern society themselves. Nothing short of this can prevent power from being handed over to an elite.”

7. “Secondly, we have to work out how we can have a modern society that operates without the laws of capitalist production being in control. Very few people on the left have even understood that this is a real problem.”

Now the summary:

A. Support/assist struggles from below to maintain living standards and for concessions (points 1 and 2)

B. Engage in theoretical clarification about how the system operates (exemplified in point 3)

C. Make progress in working out answer(s) to the question, ‘Like what, exactly?’ (points 4, 5, and 7)

D. Make progress in assisting regular people to become theoretically and intellectually equipped to govern society themselves (point 6)

It is because of point 3 (and *especially* because of point 6) that I don't support social democratic policy--either as a solution to systemic problems (point 3) or as a supposed route to political mobilization (point 6). (As I also wrote in chapter 9 of the book, "the Keynesianism that dominated the left helped to demobilize working people—by encouraging them to trust Keynesian politicians, policies, and doctrines as well as the leaders of their unions, instead of trusting their own ability to run their lives themselves and re-establish society on new, human foundations.")

Popular struggles to force concessions on the government--neoliberal, social-democratic, or whatever—are an entirely different matter.

I hope this helps.

Best wishes,


Saturday, April 25, 2015


Religious emancipation is not liberation from any particular institution, but from a superstructure of thought that threatens to repeatedly enslave the subject by means of authoritarian premises. In order to get beyond religion one must get beyond this superstructure, and in order to get beyond this superstructure one must be able to resist its impression, which is an impression based on authority. I am only free from religion when I am free from the superstructure of religion. One is mistaken if they think this superstructure is specific to religion, but is instead, a general system of thought that entraps the student by means of fallacy and false dichotomy, by which it also contrives its solutions, thereby solidifying its authoritarian propositions. Once the student affirms these propositions he is trapped in the system. One must learn how to question the emotional and intuitive obviousness of these propositions. One must be capable of resisting authority before one can be free from the superstructure of religion.

To be religious does not simply mean that one adheres to, practices, believes in, a religion, but that one is caught in, committed to,
a superstructure of thought (a web of belief) a superstructure of propositions, in other words, one has been mastered, is now subservient, powerless against (as in not being able to refute or resist)... one is the victim of this thought... 


Wednesday, April 15, 2015


"The Communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a Communistic revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win." Communist Manifesto

Regardless of where one comes out in relation to Marxism the potent truth of the Marxist vision is hard to refute. The reality is that the people already possess all they need to exact the conditions they require. Perhaps the paradox is that it is the people who create the material conditions, but under capitalism, these conditions are [hi-jacked] controlled by the ruling class; regulated by those with wealth.

The problem of revolution is that of awareness; a lack of consciousness, a lack of social comprehension as to the nature and origin of material conditions. Just so long as the people have enough to live they will not question the structure in which they live, but eventually, poor conditions lead the common citizen to skepticism.

"Let the ruling classes tremble..." because the people will eventually rebel from the sorrow of their chains. In order for the ruling class to exist it must regulate those it rules, and in order to do this there are only two options: one is to make the people happy; the second is to rule the people by force. But when manipulation fails to render systematic obedience (which is obtained through the cultivation of ignorance); when it fails to lobotomize the masses into mindless subservience, then the ruling class will turn to violence. But we have an answer to this. Our aim is nonviolent. We are not seeking to inspire a bloody revolution. We believe we can make progress simply by following the examples of Gandhi and King. We are nonviolent activists; we are peacful warriors of revolution; the force of our power is the force of our unity; the force of our power is the sanity of our speech, is the creativity of our action.

From the very beginning we must make it known that we are nonviolent revolutionaries (as nonviolence is the only way to fight a system built on military power). Our tactics in this endeavor must be creative as opposed to barbaric (we must not attempt to fight violence with violence). 

There is a moral ideology in the world; an ideology that dehumanizes the man and woman in poverty; an ideology that says wealth equals virtue, but a man can have all the riches in the world and still fail to exemplify character. The battle before us is not a battle of numbers, in the sense of economics, but a battle of ideology in the sense of morality (a morality left-over from the confusion of feudalism, aristocracy and plutocracy). In this morality there is a presumed order of caste, a false hierarchy of value. But if we will examine reality, the material conditions of existence, it is the worker who supplies the world with wealth. The rich man can only obtain wealth because he exploits the worker's labor. What then is the worker's true value?

It is important to understand that it is morality, and not economics, that determines the society of men. Where we find oppression we also find oppressive values, and the key to refuting these values is to replace them with New Values. But people are afraid of the New; they always retort with the same objection: "if we do not retain the Truth of our traditions we will destroy our civilization." But this is nonsense. Societies have only progressed by transcending values; by shattering and disposing of old myths; by rejecting authoritarian power.

All philosophy leads to the conclusion of community; it leads to the question of civilization; it leads to the science of stability.    

The ruling class has not even begun to exploit the proletariat; poverty (which leads to wage-slavery) will soon be on the rise, but this maneuver will only awaken a sleeping giant. What will the ruling class do: will they kill us in the streets? What will they do when millions of people rise up in protest against the measures of their austerity?

The future of the system hinges on the unity of the people. The ruling class only rules because the people are not united in the cause of their freedom.   


Tuesday, April 14, 2015

A Review of Alvin Plantinga's Knowledge and Christian Belief- Jersey Flight

Shock and surprise; this book proves what all his other books prove, only this book proves it more concisely: Plantinga is a sophist! He deceives (and in some tragic cases) entraps the reader with his subtleties.

The existential truth about Plantinga is that he's a huge waste of time. You have probably heard many distinguished people praise him as being some kind of Apologetical Titan. This is not true. Let him speak for himself:

"I'll show how theistic and Christian belief can indeed have warrant. I won't claim to have shown that such belief does have warrant... I won't argue that theistic belief is true... The fact is there are some very good arguments for theistic belief [notice he did not say Christianity]... nevertheless, these arguments are not strong enough to support the conviction with which serious believers in God do in fact accept theistic belief; furthermore, I don't believe that these arguments are sufficient to confer knowledge on one who accepts belief in God on their basis." Preface pg.10

"I won't argue that... belief in God or in the great things of the gospel... do have warrant. That is because they have warrant only if they are true; and while I think they are true, I don't think it is possible to show, by way of arguments that commend themselves to everyone, that they are. (I do believe that there are strong arguments for their truth; but these arguments are not strong enough to confer knowledge on someone who accepts them by way of these arguments)." Ibid.

In Plantinga sophistry lives!

"I won't argue that theistic belief is true..." And yet, somehow there are strong arguments for the truth of the great things of the Christian gospel? Then how is this truth not strong enough to be knowledge?

[Never mind the fact that not everyone agrees with Plantinga's idea of the Christian gospel.]

What are we left with? (And here the reader must pay close attention to Plantinga's reasoning):

"...IF belief in God is in fact true then John Calvin's" ASSERTION regarding the existence of a "sensus divinitatis" {some mystical notion of Deity that exists in the human mind, that is claimed to be a "natural instinct"} is "very likely" to exist. [I am merely paraphrasing Plantinga here as some will be confused by the Latin term sensus divinitatis]

But it gets crazier (and keep in mind) Plantinga is suppose to be a rational, analytical theistic philosopher.

"For IF Christian belief is true, then very likely there is something like Calvin's internal witness of the Holy Spirit or Aquinas's inward instigation of the divine invitation, and by virtue of these processes, Christian belief enjoys warrant." Ibid.

By virtue of these processes? So how does Plantinga furnish theistic belief with warrant? Answer: by appealing to an obscure and controversial idea of Spirit! This is the best that "the greatest living theistic philosopher" can do: claim that the assertion of a Holy Spirit is true? Dear god, is this a joke?

[It would be the height of entertainment to hear Plantinga expound the specific nature of "these processes."]

I dare young people to argue the following points in front of their philosophy class:

"What is proposed for our belief in Scripture, therefore, just is testimony -- divine testimony... On the other hand, there is also the special work of the Holy Spirit in getting us to believe, in enabling us to see the truth of what is proposed." Ibid. pg. 61-62

"...it is the instigation of the Holy Spirit, on this model, that gets us to see and believe that the propositions proposed for our beliefs in Scripture really are a word from the Lord." pg.62

"There should be little doubt that Christian belief can be and probably is justified, and justified even for one well acquainted with Enlightenment and postmodern demurrers. If your belief is a result of the internal instigation of the Holy Spirit, it may seem obviously true, even after reflection on the various sorts of objections that have been offered. Clearly one is then violating no intellectual obligations in accepting it." pg. 62

"The believer encounters the great truths of the gospel; by virtue of the activity of the Holy Spirit she comes to see that these things are indeed true." pg.63

"...the internal instigation of the Holy Spirit working in concord with God's teaching in Scripture is a cognitive process or belief-producing mechanism that produces in us beliefs constituting faith, as well as a host of other beliefs." pg.67

{Insane Brigand: there is such a thing as a Holy Spirit? And it is part of our cognitive process?!!! This is comical, argue this in front of your philosophy class and you will be laughed off the stage.}

(Never mind the fact that Plantinga's argument, for the actual existence of this so-called Holy Spirit, is the fact that one has a certain belief which is said to be "produced" by it). "Because I believe in Faeries, therefore the Spirit of Faeries must exist, or else I would not believe in Faeries. By god the Spirit of Faeries is the only way to account for my belief in Faeries!"

Knock, knock?
"Who's there?"
The Holy Spirit.
"The Holy Spirit who?"
The Holy Spirit who produced your belief in the Holy Spirit.

All these years and who knew it, the solution to all our philosophical problems was 'a reference' to the Holy Spirit! Plantinga is a philosophical genius!

"The Rational Solution of the Holy Spirit," written by the world's greatest living philosopher, Alvin Plantinga.

"How the Holy Spirit Changed my Life and Yours," written by the world's greatest living philosopher, Alvin Plantinga.

"How the Holy Spirit Made Me Aware of the Holy Spirit," written by the world's greatest living philosopher, Alvin Plantinga.

"The Cognitive Touch of the Holy Spirit," written by the world's greatest living philosopher, Alvin Plantinga.


Notice Platinga's famous qualifiers; "IF the thing is true then all the conclusions that would follow from it being true are equally true." (As though he has done anything more than state the obvious).

"IF Santa exists then he has magical reindeer that can fly." [Although in all reality this would actually be a non-sequitur fallacy.]

IF, IF, IF. But the question is not what is true IF God exists; the question is whether or not God does exist; whether or not belief in God is true, not IF belief in God is true! (This is just another example of Plantinga's subtle sophistry).

I suspect many Christians, will at this point, exercise cognitive dissonance. That is to say, they will dismiss what I have said, assuming that Plantinga's theology must be more complicated than this. I hate to break it to you, but it's not. If you try to get away with this sophistry, in the presence of a competent thinker, you will most "likely" get knocked on your superstitious ass.

Although general readers of Plantinga (and those who have merely heard his name) might have the "impression" that he is providing an exclusive apologetic for Christianity, this is not true, he has said that belief in Zeus would qualify as making one a theist.* The general population, is in fact ignorant, of the specific nature of Plantinga's program. While he might be a Christian (for personal reasons) his apologetic does not permit the exclusive claim of Christianity. In other words, that which is contrary to Christianity has just as much "warrant" as Christianity itself. This is because Plantinga is a sophist; whenever he gets cornered he finds his way out by appealing to a vague notion of God (yes, a God of the gaps). But the question is whether or not theistic belief, in this all-too-general-way, has any rational or empirical substance?

And do you think Plantinga, being a Christian, wants to argue for the equality of theistic belief? Most certainly not, but the reality of his investigation has led him to the conclusion that there is no way to justify the exclusive claims of Christianity above the exclusive claims of other forms of theism. The only thing Plantinga could do was claim a general and meaningless "warrant" in the name of all versions of theism! (And keep in mind) Plantinga has almost nothing to say about the existence of God; he is merely concerned with "belief" in God. (This is another subtle distinction that many people, who only have a vague impression of Plantinga, might find disturbing).

IF that which is contrary to Christianity (say Islam) has just as much "warrant" as Christianity, then all the "IFs" that apply to Christianity must equally apply to Islam; and eventually those "IFs" must come into contact with each other in such a way as to cancel each other out. And even if this isn't the case (which is a big IF) we are still only talking about the abstract, epistemic status of "belief" (and not) the actual substance as to whether or not the object of that belief exists.

The most important proposition regarding Plantinga is that his work is a waste of time. (If you desire to read a quality theologian then read Reinhold Niebuhr. Niebuhr starts where a consistent Plantinga, after long and stubborn futility, would eventually end).

For more on Plantinga see my youtube video: The Man Who Killed Plantinga (speaking metaphorically as a reference to his theology).

* In a panel discussion at Georgetown University, Jan 7, 2013, Standing Seminar.


--------A SHORT EXCHANGE--------

P. Bakiny writes: If you don't understand someone's reasoning it doesn't mean it does not make sense, it just means you don't understand it. Let me try to explain to you what Plantinga is saying.

He is basically saying (and has said throughout his carrer) that you can't really show using classical arguments whether or not belief in God is epistemically justified. Most people who argue against God do not argue that belief in God is false, they argue that it is not warranted or epistemically justified. Plantinga is trying to respond to that claim by arguing that if belief in God is true, therefore it has warrant (notice this isn't true for all belief systems. He also argues that naturalism does not have warrant even if it is true). This is the purpose of the so called A/C model (short for Aquinas and Calvin). The point is that if the theistic God exists, then it is very likely that our cognitive faculties were created by him and function properly in the environment in which they were created, and are successfuly aimed at truth. One of these cognitice faculties is something like the sensus divinitatis, whose purpose is to reveal certain spiritual truths to us a priori. Thus, if belief in God is true, it has warrant. You seem to undermine the importance of Plantinga's claim. The fact is, if he is successful, then one can no longer claim that belief in God is unwarranted. In order to argue against belief in God, one can only try to show that belief in God is false. Plantinga's efforts here would therefore defeat even the powerful evidential problem of evil if it is successful because the evidential problem of evil does not try to show that belief in God is false, rather, it tries to show that belief in God is not justified given the amount of evil and suffering there is in the world, a very modest conclusion when you think about it. At any rate, Plantinga is a world class philosopher who is respected by theists and atheists alike, whether you like it or not. So you calling him a sophist on here isn't really going to change that. All your comment showed was that you haven't got a clue what you are arguing against. 

Jersey Flight: "If you don't understand someone's reasoning it doesn't mean it does not make sense, it just means you don't understand it."

oh dear, I think you might be right. Since you understand Plantinga so well perhaps you can answer the questions he seems to evade?

How do you know there is such a thing as a Holy Spirit? And how do you know that it is part of our cognitive process?

"Plantinga is a world class philosopher." Indeed, indeed! This much should be clear from my review. He is perhaps the world's greatest living philosopher! Dare I say, perhaps the greatest philosopher that ever lived? I mean... he gave us the powerful, 'philosophical solution' of the HOLY SPIRIT (although it is not his fault this sounds like a pack of chewing gum).

P. Bakiny: "How do you know there is such a thing as a Holy Spirit? And how do you know that it is part of our cognitive process?"

Well the simple fact that you ask that question really shows that you don't get it. Plantinga isn't trying to prove that there is such a thing as the holy spirit, or that the sensus divinitatis really exists. That would be like showing that Christianity is true, which is simply not the purpose of the book. He argues that the criticisms of the likes of Freud and Marx in the past, and that of the so called new atheists aim at showing that Christian belief is unjustified, not that it is false. Some of these criticisms rely on the supposed lack of evidence for God to draw that conclusion, others argue from religious pluralism that belief in the Christian God isn't warranted. Plantinga shows how if the Christian God does exist, then there is a deliverance apart from reason (but not contrary to reason) by which we know that he does exist, and thus, if The Christian God exists, Christian belief is warranted, despite what those people might think. Now if one wants to argue against the rationality of Christian belief, one must argue that it is false, not that it isn't warranted. Notice this does not prove that there is such a deliverance, nor does Plantinga ever claim to be able to prove that. The point is theistic belief is such that if it is true, it is rational to believe that it is true despite what some people might consider evidence that it isn't true and hence that it isn't rational to believe in it. By contrast, as I said in my first post, he argues that naturalism is not warranted even if it is true, that is, if naturalism also entails evolutionary theory, the conjunction of those beliefs is self defeating according to Plantinga, and that is because believing in naturalism and evolution causes one (upon reflection) to doubt their own belief in naturalism and evolution. 

Jersey Flight: "...the simple fact that you ask that question really shows that you don't get it."

Very well, but perhaps you can answer my questions? Unless of course, there is something wrong with my questions (aside from the fact that they are not questions Plantinga likes to ask)?

"Plantinga shows how IF the Christian God does exist, then there is a deliverance apart from reason (but not contrary to reason)..."

Very well, how do you know IF the Christian God does exist? [And then] we can talk about "deliverance apart from reason (but not contrary to reason)." [for surely there is no sophistry here.]

"...if one wants to argue against the rationality of Christian belief, one must argue that it is false, not that it isn't warranted."

If one wants to argue against the "rationality" of Christian belief... and "the rationality of Christian belief" is what exactly? Did you not just say, "deliverance apart from reason?"

"The point is theistic belief is such that IF it is true, it is rational to believe that it is true despite what some people might consider evidence that it isn't true and hence that it isn't rational to believe in it."

The point is belief in the Jolly Green Giant is such that IF it is true, it is rational to believe that it is true despite what some people might consider evidence that it isn't true and hence that it isn't rational to believe in it.

[It is rational to believe despite evidence against it???] Then how do you falsify this kind of belief?

Surely this land of "IF" is The Land of Make Believe?

Plantinga and his mindless followers want to talk about the rules within in The Land of Make Believe, while others of us are scratching our heads, wondering why people would spend so much effort talking about something that doesn't exist?

At the end of the day all Plantinga can say is, "well, it was never my contention to prove that Wonderland was real, I was merely talking about what might be the case if Wonderland was real."

[And notice] my rational friends, the tragic effects of Plantinga's theology... notice how his disciples have been programmed to ignore relevant questions in order to protect their theology. This is no different from any cult.

How does Plantinga achieve his effect? By getting his subjects to believe that questions about existence, in the context of his theology, have no bearing on the nature of his theology. That is to say, an evidential objection (or any objection that contradicts his premise) no longer carries any weight. In other words, the most consistent thing a disciple of Plantinga can say is, "you don't get it..." because in order to "get it" we would have to affirm his conclusions! (which are confessedly not the result of reason or evidence, but "emotive affirmations" based on selected assertions).

Because his position cannot be falsified; because it is essentially a form of fideism... once you're in there is no way to get out. Hence, the utterly futility of rational or evidential dialogue.

"...we don't require argument from, for example, historically established premises about the authorship and reliability of the bit of Scripture in question to the conclusion that the bit in question is in fact true. Scripture is self-authenticating in the sense that for belief in the great things of the gospel to be justified, rational, and warranted, no historical evidence and argument for the teaching in question, or for the veracity or reliability or divine character of Scripture (or the part of Scripture in which it is taught), is necessary." Ibid. pg.65

"Confirmation bias is the tendency for people to (consciously or unconsciously) seek out information that conforms to their pre-existing view points, and subsequently ignore information that goes against them, both positive and negative. It is a type of cognitive bias and a form of selection bias toward confirmation of the hypothesis under study." RationalWiki

"The Texas Sharpshooter Fallacy is using the same data to both construct and test a hypothesis. Its name comes from a parable where a Texan fires his gun at the side of a barn, then paints a target around the bullet holes and claims to be a sharpshooter." Ibid.

I contend that Plantinga warrants his own entry.

As for the part about Naturalism failing: not only is Plantinga a Naturalist (as he has no choice in this matter), but if he can use the maneuver of "self-authentication" (which means nothing more than self-assertion) as a legitimate means of justification, then why not the Naturalist?

Plantinga's Platitude: When in doubt reference the Holy Spirit. 

P. Bakiny:  I strongly suggest that you take an intro to philosophy course, an intro to epistemology course, and intro to philosophy of religion course (among many other courses you are in need of). I'm not going to argue, but I will say that your construal of Plantinga's epistemology as fideism is obviously false. His epistemology is a variant of the oh-so-popular reliablist position (see Bergmann "Justication Without Awareness" for an explicit argument for Plantinga's proper functionalist position), but it is also compatible with internalist theories of knowledge, neither of which are committed to fideism.  

Jersey Flight: [Please imagine a robot voice when you read this]: Powerful thinking man, on what page does Bergmann refer to the "instigation of the Holy Spirit?"

Indeed, I have seen this kind of confusion before: a conclusion of philosophy (the questions of philosophy) to be equated with the claims of theology (Bait and Switch). Lovely sophistical form.

As for fideism what more can I say, when this charge, as attributed to the mighty Plantinga, is "obviously false?"

Let us hence forth only speak the truth: "...some of what Christians believe (e.g., that a human being was dead and then arose from the dead) is as Hume says, contrary to custom and experience: it seldom happens. Of course it doesn't follow, contrary to Hume's implicit suggestion, that there is anything irrational or contrary to reason in believing it, given the internal instigation of the Holy Spirit." Ibid. pg.68

"...I considered contemporary historical biblical criticism, pluralism, and the age-old problem of evil as actual or potential defeaters for Christian belief. None of these, I argued, presents a serious challenge to the warrant Christian belief can enjoy IF the model, and indeed Christian belief, is, in fact, true. But is it true? This is the really important question. And here we pass beyond the competence of philosophy. In my opinion no argument with premises accepted by everyone or nearly everyone is strong enough to support full-blown Christian belief, even if such belief is, as I think it is, more probable than not with respect to premises of that kind. Speaking for myself and not in the name of philosophy, I can say only that it does, indeed, seem to me to be true, and to be the maximally important truth." Ibid. pg.126

There you have it. Nothing more needs to be said; the mighty Plantinga has said it himself; at the end of the day "it seems to me to be true." Christian belief is the kind of thing that cannot be evaluated; it is something one must emotionally assume. It is not that philosophy is incompetent in this sense (contrary to Plantinga's assertion) but that the claims of Christianity are so god-damn-outlandish that the only conclusion one can reach, on the basis of philosophy, is that they are without substance.

We can reach a philosophical/ scientific conclusion regarding the claims of theism (we can do a philosophical, scientific evaluation), the problem is that this conclusion renders the verdict false. So Plantinga's solution is to claim that theism is beyond the reach of evaluation. There is no genius here, only abstract desperation.

Plantinga is like a man seeking to get to the second floor... we know he had to use a ladder to scale the first floor, but when he arrives on the second floor he claims he threw the ladder away. Then how can he be on the second floor? The very tools he seeks to condemn are the very tools he desperately needs. What he presupposes, in order to arrive at his conclusions, provides the only defeater needed to refute his conclusions.

"If so, however, God would intend that we be able to be aware of these truths. And if that is so, the NATURAL thing to think is that the cognitive processes that do indeed produce belief in the central elements of the Christian faith are aimed by their designer at producing that belief." Ibid. pg. 68-69

Wrong. The NATURAL thing to think is that this idea of God is nothing more than an abstract creation of the mind; an attribute of imagination. 

P. Bakiny: I mean, just time and time again, you show a blatant ignorance of the subject matter and of the work done by Plantinga on this very important issue. If you think I keep saying that because you disagree with Plantinga, you are wrong. I don't totally agree with him, but I get what he is saying, you don't, that's that! I will respond to a few objections you raise, I am getting tired of this already.

First of all, it isn't true at all that this notion can't be falsified. Is there any inherent contradiction in Plantinga's model? It is possible, but you have to go do your homework and find it instead of staying there and saying it isn't falsifiable. You make the simple minded mistake of thinking you can replace "God" with any silly concept in Plantinga's model and it would be just as valid. This is just asinine really.

Also, perhaps his model can be defeated by certain facts about the world, that's why he considers defeaters such as evil and others. He argues that they fail, but you are welcome to propose an argument leading to the conclusion that they succeed.

Anyways, I don't know what else to tell you, except to take that other guy's advice. Take a few more philosophy classes, then maybe you can hope to get it. Until then, just stop posting such silly comments. But then again, I went through your page and saw that you gave one star ratings to any book that defends the rationality of belief in God and gave five starts to any book that does the opposite. I guess that says a lot about you! 

Jersey Flight: [I have great satisfaction knowing that there is a good chance Plantinga himself is viewing this exchange; watching me bludgeon his disciples to the point where they can only claim I have no understanding of the material. (Because obviously) no one who "truly understood" what Plantinga was "really saying" would dare deny his Holy Spirit profundity.]

"You make the simple minded mistake of thinking you can replace "God" with any silly concept in Plantinga's model and it would be just as valid."

There is no reason to replace Plantinga's idea of God with anything else, when Plantinga's idea of God is silly enough.

"God the Father was prepared to endure the anguish [that He created for Himself] of seeing His Son [who is also the same God as the Father], the second person of the Trinity, consigned [of His own will and power] to the bitterly and shameful death of the cross." Ibid. pg.77

"...you are welcome to propose an argument leading to the conclusion that they succeed."

There is no reason to do this when it is a "properly basic" fact that Plantinga's position is false. (or at least it is comical to see serious people wax all-the-more-serious over his Holy Spirit epistemology. This is just plain fun)!

"...the NATURAL thing to think is that the cognitive processes that do indeed produce belief" have thereby deceived the believer. [that is, if they lead you to the conclusion of the existence of a Trinity by means of the mystical instigation of the Holy Spirit, via the assertions found in ancient, cultural documents.] This is not philosophy my friend, this is CRAZY!

There is nothing more to say; what I said in my review was correct: 'the most important proposition regarding Plantinga is that his work is a waste of time.'

Theism is a game for children.