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  1.  37
    Three Revisionary Implications of Buddhist Animal Ethics.Calvin Baker - forthcoming - Philosophy East and West.
    Many accept the following three theses in animal ethics. First, although animal welfare should not be—or at least, need not be—our top moral priority, it is not a trivial one either. Second, if an animal is sentient, then it is a moral patient. Third, the extinction of an animal species is a tragic outcome that we have moral reason to prevent. I argue that a traditional (i.e., pre-modern) Buddhist perspective pushes against the first thesis and that a naturalized Buddhist perspective (...)
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  2. Is Buddhism without rebirth ‘nihilism with a happy face’?Calvin Baker - forthcoming - Analysis.
    I argue against pessimistic readings of the Buddhist tradition on which unawakened beings invariably have lives not worth living due to a preponderance of suffering (duḥkha) over well-being.
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  3.  73
    Buddhism and Utilitarianism.Calvin Baker - 2022 - An Introduction to Utilitarianism.
    This article considers the relationship between utilitarianism and the ethics of Early Buddhism and classical Indian Mahāyāna Buddhism. Section 2 discusses normative ethics. I argue (i) that Early Buddhist ethics is not utilitarian and (ii) that despite the many similarities between utilitarianism and Mahāyāna ethics, it is at best unclear whether Mahāyāna ethics is consequentialist in structure. Section 2 closes by reconstructing the Buddhist understanding of well-being and contrasting it to hedonism. -/- Section 3 focuses on applied ethics. I suggest (...)
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  4. Non-Archimedean population axiologies.Calvin Baker - forthcoming - Economics and Philosophy.
    Non-Archimedean population axiologies – also known as lexical views – claim (i) that a sufficient number of lives at a very high positive welfare level would be better than any number of lives at a very low positive welfare level and/or (ii) that a sufficient number of lives at a very low negative welfare level would be worse than any number of lives at a very high negative welfare level. Such axiologies are popular because they can avoid the (Negative) Repugnant (...)
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  5. Expected choiceworthiness and fanaticism.Calvin Baker - 2024 - Philosophical Studies 181 (5).
    Maximize Expected Choiceworthiness (MEC) is a theory of decision-making under moral uncertainty. It says that we ought to handle moral uncertainty in the way that Expected Value Theory (EVT) handles descriptive uncertainty. MEC inherits from EVT the problem of fanaticism. Roughly, a decision theory is fanatical when it requires our decision-making to be dominated by low-probability, high-payoff options. Proponents of MEC have offered two main lines of response. The first is that MEC should simply import whatever are the best solutions (...)
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  6. The Alienation Objection to Consequentialism.Barry Maguire & Calvin Baker - 2020 - In Douglas W. Portmore (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Consequentialism. New York, USA: Oup Usa.
    An ethical theory is alienating if accepting the theory inhibits the agent from fitting participation in some normative ideal, such as some ideal of integrity, friendship, or community. Many normative ideals involve non-consequentialist behavior of some form or another. If such ideals are normatively authoritative, they constitute counterexamples to consequentialism unless their authority can be explained or explained away. We address a range of attempts to avoid such counterexamples and argue that consequentialism cannot by itself account for the normative authority (...)
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  7. Buddhism and effective altruism.Calvin Baker - 2022 - In Dominic Roser, Stefan Riedener & Markus Huppenbauer (eds.), Effective Altruism and Religion: Synergies, Tension, Dialogue. Nomos. pp. 17-45.
    This article considers the contemporary effective altruism (EA) movement from a classical Indian Buddhist perspective. Following barebones introductions to EA and to Buddhism (sections one and two, respectively), section three argues that core EA efforts, such as those to improve global health, end factory farming, and safeguard the long-term future of humanity, are futile on the Buddhist worldview. For regardless of the short-term welfare improvements that effective altruists impart, Buddhism teaches that all unenlightened beings will simply be reborn upon their (...)
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