Throughout time there have always been some philosophers who present theories, which have philosophical themes in religious thinking that, are in connection to current social and political ideas. Thinkers like St. Anselm, St. Thomas Aquinas, and John Hick all express their views and feelings on the existence of God, as well as the human race. Their theories are based off asking questions like why are we here and how do we prove God’s existence? Is there really life after death and where does the soul go? They also explore the ideas and theories behind the nature of man and what relationship that has with the existence of God. With one goal in mind, at three different times in history each have resulted in the same conclusion, that God does exist and his existence is a result of knowing and understanding why he exists.
They all prove their theories in different ways, but their outcome is one in the same. St. Anselm takes the ontological argument to explain to existence of God. An ontological argument is simply an analysis of the nature or being of something, where we would attempt to define the object, to understand its nature and to be able to list all its qualities and attributes. However, it is important to keep in mind the difference between appearance and reality when using the ontological argument to define God’s existence. There are things that appear to be real in the presence of God, but are indeed only an image of the mind.
The Essay on The weaknesses of the Ontological argument give support to Atheism. Discuss this statement
Anselm’s ontological argument described in part (a), was refuted in his own lifetime, by Gaunilo, who demonstrated in a reduction ad absurdum of his own, that if the logic of the argument were applied to things other than God, it led to invalid conclusions. Gaunilo didn’t identify any specific fault with the argument, but argued that something must be wrong with it, because if there wasn’t ...
Anselm begins first with the meaning of the word God. According to most Jews and Christians, the term God means one that is greatest in power, in knowledge, in goodness and in reality; which then can be translated to be God is conceived as the most perfect being. Since this view of God that accords with the faith commitments of most believers, Anselm uses it in his ontological analysis. His definition becomes “that being than which none greater can be conceived”, making God not only the greatest being, but yet the greatest conceivable being. Based on Anselm’s definition he makes the argument that for a being that exists both in understanding and in reality, which would be greater than a being existing in understanding alone.
Therefore, as Anselm stated “even a fool is convinced that something exists in the understanding, at least, than which nothing greater can be conceived. For, when he hears of this, he understands it. And whatever is understood exists in the understanding.” This theory proves that God is the highest being on heaven and earth, and is above anyone else as being the greatest. If this is true, than it can be stated that God does exist. So that God is the greatest conceivable being known to man, and to know God exists, we must know what he is and how to explain his presence. When we can sense and explain God’s existence when we begin to understand the concept of God, and to know that such an almighty being exists is the greatest truth and knowledge man could ever know.
Anselm most certainly brought a clear view on the presence of God, and from that knowledge, St. Thomas Aquinas expanded those ideas to the next level. St. Thomas Aquinas lived in a critical juncture of western culture when the arrival of the Aristotelian corpus in Latin translation reopened the question of the relation between faith and reason. Many contemporary philosophers are unsure how to read St. Thomas Aquinas.
Nonetheless, among his writings, were found works that anyone would recognize as philosophical and commentaries on Aristotle increasing interest of Aristotelian scholars. For Aquinas his best known work is the Summa Theologiae. In his writing he makes his augment of God’s existence from natural stand point, which is a way of using what we know about nature to discover truths about God. This is based on knowledge we first gain from the senses. Aquinas doesn’t agree with the ontological argument. He instead uses the disputed question format to prove his theory.
Let me start by saying straightforwardly that the meaning of God is God himself. We must look at the meaning of God in God himself, not 'outside' him. God is the fundamental meaning for the existence of the Universe, the creator, the supreme One: that is why everything exists. Why is something there? How did this universe come to exist, or others that might be? Why do we exist? For most people in ...
Two important objections he makes are one, to any argument for God is the presence of evil in the world. For if there is exists an all-powerful, all-good God, then there shouldn’t be evil in the world. Two we can account for the world on its own without appealing to God as its creator. Aquinas makes these objections to help prove his theory.
In the Summa Theologiae, Aquinas proves God’s existence in five ways; one through motion, two the relates to motion theory, three possibility and necessity, four gradation of things and five governance. Each of these ways helps to establish understanding and meaning to God’s life. However, it is the third way that needs to be looked at closely. According to Aquinas “The third way is taken from possibility and necessity, and runs thus. We find in nature things that are possible to be and not to be, since they are found to be generated and to be corrupted, and consequently, it is possible for them to be and not to be.
But is impossible for these always to exist, for that which can not-be at some time is not. Therefore, if everything can not-be, then at some time there was nothing in, but that which does not exist begins to exist only through something already existing. Therefore, if at one time nothing was in existence, it would have been impossible for anything to have begun to exist; and thus even now nothing would be in existence-which is absurd. Therefore, not all beings are merely possible, but there must exist something the existence of which is necessary. But every necessary things which have their necessity caused by another, as has been already proved in regard to efficient causes. Therefore we cannot but admit the existence of some being having of itself its own necessity, and not receiving it from another, but rather causing in others their necessity.
While speaking about various sides of the human existence we cant help mentioning the field of economics. The economics is the main engine of the human societys development. Internet brought the new technologies to our life, shortened the distances and cut the solution terms. Since 19XX I have been watching the gradual development of the relatively new type of companies, namely Internet based. ...
This all men speak of as God.” In this statement Aquina is saying Everything is Contingent. Meaning there is a collective sense of “All”, distributed sense of “each and everything” and nothing exists; idea that there is nothing out of something. God brought everything into existence and because of that existence God is the center of man’s existence. The third argument is not a restatement of the second argument, but yet a new augment arises. It turns to the notion of contingency. Making a contingency being not only dependent but also merely possible.
When something is merely possible it can be said that it could exist or could not exist. From this theory it can be assumed that God is the cause of all things, the begin and goodness in all creations. He is proving and showing the world that there is only one God and because he exists then so does everything else in the world. Aquina’s theory comes to the same assumption as Anselm’s that God exists without experience.
Even without nothing, God is still able to be present and create life in goodness, and it is from the presence of all things that are good, do we know that God does exist. Knowing and understanding that God does exist in a world contained of nothingness, proves God’s existence is powerful and almighty. John Hick takes a different approach to the relationship between God and humans beings. He confronts the only augment that confront the belief in God, and that is the problem of evil. When it comes down to it either believe in God of limited power who cannot prevent evil, or believe in a God of unlimited power who chooses to allow evil. He challenges the idea of this perfect world and wonders how it is we are suppose to live.
Is it either as human pets, or as growing individu las being mod led as children of God? Hick makes the statement that ” Is this the kind of world that an all-powerful and infinitely loving being would create as an environment for his human pets? Or Is the architecture of the world the most pleasant and convenient possible? The question that we have to ask is rather, Is this the kind of world that God might makes as an environment in which moral beings may be fashioned, through their own free insights and responses, into ‘children of God?” In this statement Hick’s is making the argument that God created earth and humans. When he created humans he also gave them the power of free will. We are here to challenge the things that are good and evil and to find a balance between both human life should be views as developmental, where the world is the kind of place where adversity can bring about moral fortitude and pain can bring about spiritual maturity. Hick is trying to show his readers that God made this environment so that we had the resources needed to mold our souls which ever way we wanted. Life is a journey that God created for man to follow.
The first man was perfect, Made in the image of God and likeness (Genesis 1:26). Image in this case can not refer to the body; God is a spirit while man is earthly. Image here would mean the divine attributes that God endued man with, separating mankind from other animals. Short gives six God like qualities that man posses. These are language, creativity intellectual ability, dominion over the ...
Making the decisions necessary to survive is what molds individuals into the God created. To become the perfect being whom God is seeking to create. Hick’s continues on to follow Aquinas theory that God is the creator of everything in the universe regardless if it’s evil or good. Yet, it is how we use these gifts is what separates us among other creators. No one is ready made by God to be perfect, we only can achieve that thru free will and faith. Humans can’t live life without pain and suffering, and even though God is good and wants no evil, he understands that humans need to be tested and need pain to feel the love and of God’s presence.
Based on St. Thomas Aquinas, Anselm, and John Hick’s theories on the existence of God, one could conclude that God does exists both in reality and understanding because of all the signs and symbols that are present in society. God exist because we want him to exist, and he exists for the sake and souls of all human beings. God gives us the ability to make our own decisions based on knowing what is good or evil. Knowing and understanding is the key to God’s reality. Humans are the only creates on earth that have that ability.
In John Perry's book Dialogue on Good, Evil and the Existence of God, he used three characters in the dialogue in order to clarify the positions of the three characters (Weirob, Miller, and Cohen), the arguments they provide in support their positions and the "end state" of their discussion. This allows us to examine our understanding of the good, evil and the existence of God. Perry shows a clear ...
As humans continue to and follow the word of God, society will continue to be in balance. Keeping everything in balance is what keeps society running.