The Ontological Argument

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An unfinished starting point for the ontological argument

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The Ontological Argument
  1. Anselm
    1. Used the statement in Psalms that said " a fool says in his heart there is no God"
      1. The Proslogion
        1. Reductio ad absurdum
          1. Proof by contradiction
            1. Both forms of the argument do this
              1. Proving your version is right by suggesting that the opposite would prove an absurd result
            2. God is the greatest conceivable being
              1. God is "aliquid quo nihil mauis possibit"
              2. Part 2
                1. Same format but with contingency and neccessity
                  1. When he paints it it exists in his reality and his understanding
                    1. It exists in his understanding
                      1. The painter knows what he is going to paint before he paints it
                        1. God is the greatest conceivable being
                          1. It is better to have always existed then to stop existing
                            1. If God stop existing a greater being could be conceived that always exists
                              1. Therefore God must always exist
                              2. Part 1
                                1. Therefore God must exist.
                                  1. To think God doesn't would be a contradiction to the 1st premise
                                  2. If God existed only in the mind a greater being could be conceived that exists in both
                                    1. It is greater to exist in the mind and reality rather than just reality
                                      1. God is the greatest conceivable being
                                  3. Descartes
                                    1. Cogito ergo sum
                                      1. I think therefore I am
                                        1. Though he could prove he exists, he could not prove the existence of everything else
                                        2. He believed that the knowledge of the triangles properties did not come from his senses as his senses would not derive the triangles properties as clearly as his mind would
                                          1. Part 2
                                            1. God is a supremely perfect being
                                              1. Existence is a perfection
                                                1. If God did not exist he would not be supremely perfect as existence is a perfection
                                                  1. Therefore God must exist
                                                    1. A supremely perfect being has all the perfections
                                                    2. When considering critisms
                                                      1. To think of God without existence is to think of a mountain without valleys or a triangle without three sides
                                                    3. Background
                                                      1. A priori
                                                        1. Not based on experience
                                                          1. Tries to prove Gods existence through logic alone
                                                          2. Critisms
                                                            1. Guanillo
                                                              1. Anselms first part.
                                                                1. You cant define something into existence
                                                                  1. You can think of the perfect island but doesn't mean it exists.
                                                                    1. Everyone's idea of perfection is different (subjective)
                                                                  2. You can add or take things from the perfect island but you can't from God as he is necessary
                                                                  3. In "on behalf of the fool"
                                                                  4. Aquinas
                                                                    1. Everyones definition of God is different
                                                                      1. We dont have an innate concept of God. Even if we did it is confused
                                                                        1. How can someone who is contingent have the correct concept of one who is not
                                                                          1. He is beyond human understanding
                                                                          2. Hume
                                                                            1. It is not possible to take an idea in someones mind, apply pure logic to it and come with a conclusion based entirely in the external, observable universe
                                                                              1. existence is not a predicate
                                                                                1. Responses
                                                                                  1. Some would say, as human beings we base our lives around that which we can observe rather than what we can rationally prove. However is this the case??
                                                                                2. Kant
                                                                                  1. existence is not a predicate
                                                                                    1. a predicate must give us information about the subject. To say something exists does not give us any description
                                                                                    2. God can not be placed in a separate category than everything else
                                                                                      1. In doing this anselm and descartes have given a synthetic proposition an analytical status and broken the rules of grammer
                                                                                        1. In an analytical statement the subject definition is contained within the assertion, for example " a square has four sides"
                                                                                          1. To suggest that a square does not have four sides is illogical.
                                                                                          2. Propositions related to existence are synthetic because because you have to prove that the thing in question exists and so it is not evident in the statement
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