Posts Tagged ‘Logic’

Three Reasons We Should Care about Logic According to Isaac Watts

imagesThe great English theologian and hymn writer Isaac Watts is best known for classics such as “Joy to the World” or “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.” Lesser known is that Watts was one of the premier logicians of his day. He wrote a text in logic that became the standard text at Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, and Yale for well over 100 years. In the introduction to his Logic: The Right use of Reason in the Inquiry after Truth Watts provides three reasons why we should care about logic. These reasons are as relevant today as they were in 1724. Dare I say, they carry even more relevance today in a culture focused on image, overrun with anti-intellectualism, and captivated by mindless and constant attention to social media.

God and Logic Part 2: Do Laws of Logic Have Divine Attributes?

Unknown-2In my critical thinking class, in addition to learning the minutia of validity and invalidity, we are also exploring the relationship between God and logic. Needless to say, this is a topic that most standard textbooks on logic or critical thinking neglect. It is for this reason that I assign Vern Poythress’s book Logic: A God-Centered Approach to the Foundation of Western Thought. In this book Poythress includes 10 chapters reflecting on God and logic (insert: cheer and excitement here). While I appreciate the attention given to the issue, I often find Poythress’s treatment overly simplistic and, and at times, confused.

God and Logic Part 1: The Logical Euthyphro

imagesWhat does God have to do with logic? It seems that the reality of the laws of logic force God into a dilemma. Either God is subject to the laws of logic or he is not. If God is subject to the laws of logic, then God is not absolutely sovereign. If God is not subject to the laws of logic, then God is illogical. Either way, God is less than worship worthy. Or so it would seem.