Dr. David Scott's new publication in Sophia

We congratulate Dr. Scott on his recent publication in Sophia"From the Appearance to the Reality of Excessive Suffering: Theodicy and Bruce Russell's 'Matrix' Example".

Abstract: In a popular paper, Bruce Russell argues that our nonperception of divine reasons for apparently pointless suffering justifies belief in the nonexistence of God. Russell generally accepts the common interpretive norm that we are justified in believing that something does not exist when we do not perceive it, if and only if we have reason to believe that we would perceive it if it did exist. However, on the strength of an example from the film The Matrix, Russell argues that this interpretive norm does not apply to the belief in God’s nonexistence based on our nonperception of reasons that would justify apparently pointless suffering. My paper undermines Russell’s effort to restrict the scope of this interpretive norm. It thereby leaves open the door to agnosticism.