Hi All, This post is related to my last post, although only indirectly. As most everyone is aware, in theories of moral responsibility there is a divide between two different approaches. (Of course, I do not mean to suggest that these categories exhaustively capture all contenders.) The Strawsonian, interpersonal approach treats moral responsibility's nature as essentially interpersonal. To understand it, we must do so in terms of fitting responses by others standing prepared to hold responsible. Philosophers in this camp, as I see it, include P.F. Strawson, Jonathan Bennett, Gary Watson, R. Jay Wallace, Paul Russell, Stephen Darwall, and me too (in my recent book *Conversation and Responsibility*). Ledger theorists, by contrast treat moral responsibility's nature as most fundamentally about the independent facts constituting an agent's being responsible, and the conditions for holding responsible must first satisfy conditions of veracity regarding whether an agent is responsible (was she free? did she know what she was doing?). The responsibility facts, on this view, can be fully accounted for without the need to make any reference to the standpoint or norms of holding morally responsible. Philosophers in this camp include Jonathan Glover, Joel Feinberg (I think), Michael Zimmerman, and Ish Haji, among, I suspect, many others. (John Martin Fischer and Mark Ravizza have suggested that the views might not be exclusive. That might be correct, but set that aside here.)
One thing that has come to worry me about my own defense of an interpersonal theory, and something that, I suspect will infect other versions of interpersonal theories, is that my theory seems ill suited for certain ways of thinking about a morally responsible agent's relation to God. I intended for my theory to be neutral as between different accounts of free will's nature (compatibilist or incompatibilist, for instance). But it seems not neutral here. The reason is simple: Views like mine, or instead, say, Darwall's, are views in which the one who is responsible and, for example, blameworthy, stands in a relation to those holding morally responsible, as co-deliberators in a moral community. The members of the moral community are, in a sense, moral equals or co-participants, and one's standing as a responsible agent warrants one to engage with others under the presumption that she too could hold them to account. But this seems ill-suited for one's relation to God, doesn't it? Doesn't it seem that a more natural picture of the person who is blameworthy and liable to be held to account by God is better captured on the Ledger model? On this model, God first knows the independent facts about the agent's responsibility, and the further judgments regarding the suitability of reward and punishment flow from these, but not, as my view would have it, as part of a conversation wherein the one blamed is in some manner entitled to or warranted in responding to those blaming her.