The cosmological argument (Key Terms (A posteriori based on evidence that…
The cosmological argument
based on evidence that already exists. This applies to Aquinas' third way that everything in the Universe is contingent.
The opening premises leads up to the conclusion.
we can try and prove weather this argument is true or false with senses.
The Cosmological Argument was put forward by Aquinas in his first three 'Ways' of proving God exists, in Summa Theologica.
: Refers to the space time universe.
: Something that depends on something else for its own existence.
: Something that does not depend on anything else. It was what all contingent things rely on (God).
: a failure in reasoning which makes an argument invalid.
: beyond our physical universe.
Caused necessary being
: Something that is everlasting once created, but still depends on something else for its own existence, such as angels and human souls.
Aquinas gives 3 arguments
The argument for motion
: :racing_car: Things that move cannot move themselves, they must be moved by something else. Because there is no infinite regression and their must be a starting point their must have been a first unmoved mover -God (Plato also proposed this). This argument is based on an assumption.
The argument for causation
: :lower_left_paintbrush: Everything that exists has a creator. There cannot be an infinite chain of causes. God is the uncased cause.
The argument for contingency
:blossom: :seedling:: Everything that exists depends on something else for its own existence (it is contingent), but this needs a starting point (no infinite regression). The starting point must be outside the universe which is the sum of all contingent things therefore contingent, and necessary (dependant on nothing).
Break-down of the argument for contingency
Everything can either exist or not exist :baby:.
Everything in the universe is contingent, and the universe is also contingent because it is the
sum of all contingent things
If the universe is contingent then it realise on something else for its existence since nothing can come out from nothing. Aquinas rejected the idea of
because it is incoherent.
Aquinas claims that there must be a series of things that exists necessarily, tracing back to one thing that is the cause of its own necessity.
5.there must be a first cause by a metaphysical, un-caused being / unmoved mover which exists out of its own necessity; God.
In the beginning of the argument, Aquinas agrees that ex nihil fit -nothing can come out of nothing and there is no contingent being that is everlasting. Some claim that this is false.
Accepting that this is true. Aquinas claims that something must exist necessarily.
Aquinas deals with the possibility of infinate regression, considering this as incoherent.
Hume + Russell
Both examine the definition of '
logical necessary being
' as being incoherent. Nothing contains the reason for its own existence. The concept is illogical because it is beyond human knowledge and experience. All arguments about existence should be synthetic (based on senses) rather than analytic (based on logic).
Way 3 does not concern itself with God being logically necessary (that's the ontological argument), but being
which is even more powerful. This means that God is the essence of everything that exists, so if God doesn't exist nothing can exist because God is existence.
Fallacy of composition
: Russel points out that the Cosmological Argument's 3rd way of contingency is
in a logical argument, because Aquinas argues that everything in the universe is contingent so the
universe is contingent
and requires an external explanation for its own existence. Russel claims that it is acceptable to say that everything in the universe is contingent and then claim that the universe as a whole is necessary.
Bruce Richenback claims that Way 3 is not fallacious because we know that if everything in the universe ceases to exist, than so would the universe.. This argument is mostly aimed at way 2. Although it is incorrect to assume that because a wall is made up of small bricks, the wall must be small, Coppleston claims that Aquinas is right to assume that every event in the universe has a cause, the universe as a whole is caused. This does not try to disprove God.
If God is necessary,
why can't the universe be necessary
. The argument already assumes that there is a God, whereas this is supposed to be the thing we are trying to prove. Hume objects arguments that start with something inside our experience and ends with something outside what we can experience.Why do we need and explanation behind our universe? This conforms with Occam's Razor where the simplest argument with fewest assumptions is correct.
Aquinas admits that there could be a number of caused necessary beings, that could be the universe along with angels and human souls. But this can't happen unless there is the existence of a caused necessary being. As the un-caused necessity gives necessity to caused necessary beings, it must have a reason for its own existence. So God is his own existence.
Russell suggests that the universe exists as a '
'. The simplest explanation is no explanation.
Science only works because it assumes that there are no brute facts.
Leibniz (1710) created the principal of sufficient reason as a reason for why everything exists in support of Aquinas' argument of contingency,
The argument: Everything that exists has an explanation for its own explanation.
About the Cosmological Argument. :statue_of_liberty:
Written by Aquinas in Summa Theologica
What is 'proof'?
Proofs demonstrate their conclusions with logical rigour and needs to be a priori. In these arguments we need proof beyond reasonable doubts. Hume, being an empiricist, claims that the only way to prove something is by experiencing it, and that it is impossible to know anything outside our senses. In response to Hume, some people might say that all experiences come from the senses and it is impossible to sense God -like a subatomic particle. Proof needs to be redefined as 'overwhelming probability' and nobody observes God(Gerry J Hughes).
Does not prove
It is an inductive argument that deals with probabilities rather than proofs. But we can accept it if there is overwhelming probability.
It doesn't convince atheists so does not work. Hares concept of 'bliks'.
Karl Barth says we can only know God through Jesus Christ revealed through scripture. Kant rejected necessary beings.
Does prove/ value for faith
Gives further support to religious believers and shows faith to be reasonable.
Explanation with biggest probability to creation of the universe. QUARKS!
Based on observation, with simple concepts that will be useful to believers.
Aquinas belived that faith in God is supported through reason and God's grace lets us know about Him through natural theology and revelation which are necessary.
Is the God mentioned the God of religious faith.
Russel and Coppleston Radio Debate
"This all men speak of as God" Aquinas Summa Theologica.
"I should say that the universe is just there and that's all."