The telelogical argument from Aquinas

Aquinas' argument with criticism from Hume, J.S Mill etc

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  • Created by: Luna
  • Created on: 09-01-13 16:28
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  • The Telelogical Argument: Aquinas
  • An a posteriori argument: uses evidence in the Universe to prove God's existence
  • Everything in the Universe acts towards a certain purpose
    • E.g an arrow in a bow acts towards hitting a target
      • However, the arrow would not be able to achieve its end without the archer
        • Natural parts of the Universe also act towards a certain purpose, e.g. the lungs. We do not tell our respiration system to breath ourselves, but the purpose of the lungs (to keep us alive) is still achieved
          • Aquinas argues that purposes cannot be reached without an intelligent force, demonstrated by the bow and arrow analogy. Without the intelligent force- the archer/ God, the purpose is not fulfilled
            • Hume: does this intelligent force have to be the God of Classical Theism?
          • BENEFICIAL ORDER
            • J.S Mill: is all order beneficial? Natural evil, e.g diseases- they may be achieving their purpose, but they cause suffering and are not beneficial in any way
    • Hume: can the world not have gained order? (concept of natural selection)
      • Darwin, evolution and natural selection means that order is 'learnt', i.e, with the human lung, it had developed into being as efficient as it is now over time
  • Natural parts of the Universe also act towards a certain purpose, e.g. the lungs. We do not tell our respiration system to breath ourselves, but the purpose of the lungs (to keep us alive) is still achieved
    • Aquinas argues that purposes cannot be reached without an intelligent force, demonstrated by the bow and arrow analogy. Without the intelligent force- the archer/ God, the purpose is not fulfilled
      • Hume: does this intelligent force have to be the God of Classical Theism?
    • BENEFICIAL ORDER
      • J.S Mill: is all order beneficial? Natural evil, e.g diseases- they may be achieving their purpose, but they cause suffering and are not beneficial in any way
  • Darwin, evolution and natural selection means that order is 'learnt', i.e, with the human lung, it had developed into being as efficient as it is now over time

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