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.


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.