the ontological argument


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The ontological argument
Anselm's ontological argument
First argument...
Something which exists in reality and in the mind is greater than something which exists as an
idea in the mind alone. Therefore, god must exist in reality and in the mind.
Anselm claims that existence is a predicate of god.
Anselm's second version of the argument...
Gods existence is necessary
The greatest possible being is what Christians mean by god
Some suggestions that Anselm was reflecting on, not proving, god existed necessarily
Gauinilos response to Anselm's argument...
Necessary existence is unintelligible
You cannot define the idea into existence
Gauinlos island
Gaunilo argues that while the most perfect island can be conceived of, that does not mean
that it exists; the same reasoning applies to Anselm's ontological argument
Anselm's possible reply to Gaunilo
Gaunilos argument is different, because the island, while being the greatest possible island,
does not have to exist, its existence is contingent
Plantinga argued that god is maximally great in Anselm's thought
Therefore, the greatest possible being and the greatest possible island are not comparable
Thomas Aquinas
Rejected Anselm's argument as gods existence is not self-evident, and human beings are
not in a position to understand gods nature
Claimed that there is the idea of god in every person, like a trademark or stamp
Something's cannot be doubted, such as the truths of mathematics or gods existence
Demonstrating gods existence is about showing there is no reason to ever doubt that god
Triangles and Descartes ontological argument
God and triangles have an immutable nature/essence
Part of gods essence is existence
God is the supremely perfect being
Descartes example: the concept of mountains and valleys
Further objections to the ontological argument
Kant argues that existence is not a predicate


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