Students at San Francisco State University want me to give a talk and take questions on the subject of mathematics and god, from the perspective of physics and naturalism. It's been quite a long time in the making, but we've arranged an event for Tuesday, 29 September (2009), 4-6pm. The talk is sponsored by the SFSU Department of Philosophy and by the Philosophy of Religion Society. It's free and open to the public. I will be selling and signing copies of my books afterward.
The event will be held in Room 587 of the SFSU Humanities Building. You can get directions (and info about parking) from the SFSU website (among many options, there are shuttles and buses to the campus from the Daly City BART, and I hear the Muni M line goes somewhere near as well, but don't quote me on that). For exact locations, see the southwest section of the SFSU Campus Map. There is no website for the event, but inquiries can be emailed to Steve Baughman.
The title of the talk is: "The Universe Is Mathematical, Therefore God Exists! (Or Not)." As advertised: Dr. Richard Carrier, author of Sense and Goodness without God, explains how godless naturalism explains the mathematization of physics without any Mind behind the Universe. Using examples from Archimedes to modern String Theory, Carrier will show how advocates of the contrary view, like Russel Howell and Mark Steiner, don't understand the true nature of physics or mathematics. Then he will take questions from the audience on the remarkable thesis that mathematical laws prove the existence of God.
This is basically a summary and update of my ongoing debate with Howell and Steiner, which I've blogged about before: "Our Mathematical Universe" (5 October 2007). Except this time I'll use examples from ancient (and modern) science to show why the mathematization of nature is actually expected on naturalism.