The Existence of God

Full Notes on Topic 1: Existence of God 

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  • Created on: 20-05-12 07:36
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The Big Bang is the first cause not God. (God could
have triggered the Big Bang)
Problems Difficult to prove genuine - hallucinations
How did Aquinas know everything was caused by
something else at his time Theists believe in accounts of God from scriptures
Complicated objects, such as the universe can just Problems Experience of God i.e. revelation through visions,
arise in nature without a cause dreams, general revelation. May lead to a religion
conversion.
If everything was caused by something else, who then Could also be in prayer, involvement in a miracle
caused God?
Arguments from religious experience Feel it's strong proof for God's existence. If many
Thomas Aquinas said that everything in the universe people experienced it, they can't be lying.
has a cause - one is triggered by something else.
Likewise, the universe must also be caused by Problems: Could have been an illusion, just a dream,
something else. This cause is God, the uncaused lack of evidence/strong proof.
cause. He is ETERNAL
Everything that exists must have a cause. If Universe
The First Cause (Cosmological) Argument
exists, it must have a cause
An example is the domino effect. An initial push is Theist: Someone who believes in God Gives personal experience of God which deepens
required to trigger the fall of dominos, which the one's faith
carries out a chain reaction. Atheist: Someone who doesn't believe in God
Agnostic: Someone who neither believes nor Anything that goes against the laws of nature and is
It could have been an accident not God's will disbelieves in God - he's unsure which is right usually seen as a good act for humanity. An act of
God as only he can overcome the laws of nature due
to his omnipotence and supremacy.
William Paley used the watch analogy. He said that the
watch is very complicated and had a specific purpose Coincidence occurs at the right time but no laws of Train driver collapsing due to heart attack when
to it, which made it look designed. This means it nature broken. God's intention toddler trapped on track
must have a designer, which is the watch maker. The Existence of God
Likewise, nature is even more complicated and Argument based on miracles
everything in the universe. Therefore it must have Has to have a religious connection i.e. strengthening
God created humans in his image been designed by a supreme being: God of faith or demonstration of God's love.
people have awareness, free will, sense of right and
wrong Jesus turning water into wine.
The 6 days of creation in Genesis Christians support this as God planned it
The anthropic principle is that God created the world The Design (Teleological) Argument Is god picking who he chooses to save or not?
so that it was just right for life to evolve. Gravity, the
temperature etc. is perfect and seems to be planned/ Problems Yesterday's miracles could be tomorrow's technology
designed.
These don't contradict science and can be linked to
evolution It can't be trusted/proved properly - due to wishful
Newton used the fact that we had opposing thumbs We may be rewarded in afterlife if we adhere to it.
to show we're designed. Plus we all have unique thinking
fingerprints
Morality/conscience a voice of god Atheists offer scientific explanations
Result of evolution. Darwin. People/everything in
nature evolved from less complicated to more
complicated species. Natural selection - only fittest Can only show existence of god on personal level
survive Morality is the sense of right and wrong within
people. People have a strong sense of morality. This
No proof of the universe being designed/of designer Problems sense has come to us from an external force, which is
god. God
Argument from Morality Inbuilt sense comes from outside, so from god who is
Watch analogy can't be compared with universe
external.
There are flaws in world e.g. tectonic plates don't fit
properly Different cultures, religion, countries have different
views. These can all affect a person's sense of right/
wrong
Why is there evil+suffering in the world
Problems Morality is changing rapidly. Our sense of right and
wrong changing due to a rapidly modernising world.
Science can explain a lot now. It is close to
recreating human life. So God doesn't exist Morality due to evolution. Cooperation = survival
Arguments against the existence of God Atheists argue that we experience guilt if go against
Evil and suffering in the world - why does God society's rules so we don't go against it. Some don't experience guilt
allow it if he exists/ There is therefore no god.
People go against morality. Difficult to prove it.
No life after death so morality doesn't exist

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