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Week 7 Notes

by: Madeline Redding

Week 7 Notes PHIL 1000 - 01

Madeline Redding
General Introduction to Philosophy
Matthew McGrath

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Notes on the Traditional Arguments for God's Existence
General Introduction to Philosophy
Matthew McGrath
Class Notes
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Madeline Redding on Friday October 9, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to PHIL 1000 - 01 at University of Missouri - Columbia taught by Matthew McGrath in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 17 views. For similar materials see General Introduction to Philosophy in PHIL-Philosophy at University of Missouri - Columbia.


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Date Created: 10/09/15
Traditional Arguments for God39s Existence Cont The Ontological Argument 0 St Anselm 10331109 0 quotOntologicalquot concerning existence 0 By de nition 0 If God exists God is a perfect being a being quotgreater than which nothing can be conceivedquot Some things exist merely in the mind as ideas others exist both in the mind and in reality 0 God at least exists in the mind since we have an idea of God 0 Anselm39s Ontological Argument We have an idea of God as the greatest conceivable being So God exists at least as an idea in the mind If a being exists only in the mind and not also in reality then there is a greater conceivable being that exists in both the mind and reality There is no greater conceivable being than God So God exists in reality as well as in the mind 0 One line of response 0 Does it make sense to think of a thing the same thing as existing both in the mind and in reality 0 Ex A horse Does it exist in the mind No The idea of it exists in the mind not the actual horse God isn39t the same as the idea of God 0 So perhaps the problem is with the move from step 1 to step 2 we do have an idea of God but it doesn39t follow that God exists in the mind 0 Nothing exists in the mind and in reality though Anselm assumes that this is possible 0 You can39t de ne things into existence The Cosmological Argument 0 Basic Idea some events are caused Chains of causation cannot be circular or in nite nor can a thing cause itself Thus there must be a rst cause The rst cause is God 0 The Design Argument 0 Basic Argument many things in nature are very welladapted to certain purposes the best explanation of their being adapted is that they were designed by God for these purposes thus very likely that God exists 0 Ex Paley39s Watch 0 All of the parts of the watch didn39t just randomly come together 0 Ex Human eye o No man created the human eye no one put all the different parts of the eye together 0 One major worry about design arguments Evolutionary explanations perhaps the relevant features can be explained as evolutionary adaptations Natural selection rather than divine selection FineTuning Argument 0 Basic Idea the natural constants are perfectly quottunedquot for life had they been different life would have been impossible the best explanation of this tuning is that God exists and tuned them Thus it is very likely that God exists The Problem of Evil 0 The argument for atheism from evil 1 The existence of God is incompatible with the existence of unnecessary evil 2 But there exists unnecessary evil 3 So God doesn39t exist Why believe premise 1 from reading 1 Ex The fawn Not a proof of 1 but rationally supports it o Is there a greater good for which the fawn39s suffering is necessary o Is there an equally bad or worse evil which would have happened if the fawn didn39t suffer Can we nd such a greater good or a prevented worse evil for every case ofsuffering o The theist39s options 1 Say no good reason to believe 1 2 Say 1 is false 0 Direct attack specify the greater good and worse evils lndirect attack the GE Moore shift 0 The skeptic39s argument You don39t know you aren39t dreaming If you don39t know you39re not dreaming you cannot know anything through your senses So you cannot know anything through your senses The only way you could know this pencil exists is through your senses So you don39t know the pencil exists 0 The skeptic argues So you don39t know the pencil exists Moore replies I know the pencil exists so your argument is wrong somewhere The theist Rowe thinks has to think that God would not allow unnecessary evil 0 This is what premise 2 of Rowe39s argument says P PWF Nl 39 o The theist will think premise 2 is okay 0 Turning around the rough and ready argument via the quotshif quot God does exist If god exists he wouldn39t allow unnecessary suffering Unnecessary suffering doesn39t exist o Is the GE Moore shift a cheat Zeno39s Paradox works Dichotomy Paradox works Achilles and the Tortoise paradox Another Paradox Someone who stands over 7 feet high is tall 0 Anyone a millimeter shorter than someone who is tail is also tall Therefore someone who is 3 feet high is tall 0 When is it reasonable to do the shift 1 We have to ask is your evidence for the falsity of the conclusion of the original argument stronger than the evidence for the premises of the original argument 0 If not you39re in trouble UJNl 39 PWN Review in Discussion 0 The Ontological Argument for God39s Existence 1 We have an idea of God as the greatest conceivable being 2 So God exists at least as an idea in the mind 3 If a being exists only in the mind but not in reality then there is a greater conceivable being that exists in both the mind and reality There is no greater conceivable being than God So God exists in reality as well as in the mind If this argument works it proves too much Problem with the argument it confuses the existence of a thing and the existence of an idea of a thing 0 The Cosmological Argument 1 Any chain of causation must be either 1 In nite without repetition 2 In nite with repetition circular 3 Finite so there is a rst cause 2 Claims option 1 and 2 are unacceptable so there must be a rst cause rst mover 3 Problem why are 1 and 2 unacceptable I M 3991P Argument from Design 1 The natural world is complex and many things work so well together it has to be designed 1 There must be a designer Paley39s Watch a Rival Explanation evolution 0 Finetuning argument The Problem of Evil suffering There is unnecessary evil 0 The existence of God is incompatible with the existence of unnecessary evil suffering So God doesn39t exist 0 Moore shift


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