Thursday, November 8, 2012

A simple argument that the PSR is necessarily true or necessarily false

Aron Zavaro, in correspondence, supplied me with the following simple central idea for this argument: If the Principle of Sufficient Reason (PSR) were contingently true, there would be no explanation of why it is true.

So the PSR is either necessarily true or necessarily false.

4 comments:

Drew said...

How do you define the PSR, and how do you reconcile it with libertarian free will?

Alexander R Pruss said...

See either my PSR book or this.

Heath White said...

This is a neat little argument.

It works, I think, iff explanations must entail their explananda. For suppose they don't have to entail their explananda. Then the PSR can be contingent so long as I can give an explanation of the PSR which does not entail it.

Alexander R Pruss said...

It depends. While some things do have non-entailing explanations--say, outcomes of stochastic processes--it is hard to see a very plausible story on which the PSR has such an explanation.