Teleological Argument


- A teleological argument looks at the idea of purpose and order in the universe

- It suggests that there is evidence for design in the universe, a posteriori

Aquinas' Argument

- Published in 'Summa Theologica' - The fifth way: C13th

- Regularity of succession dictates that everything follows natural laws, and tends to achieve their goal or telos. However, if they lack the intelligence or knowledge needed to do so, they must be being guided by an intelligent being

- For non-intelligent matter to behave in a beneficial way, there needs to be an intelligent power to bring about this state of affairs

- To support this idea, Aquinas used the analogy of the archer. An arrow is incapable of reaching its target as it doesn't have the ability to guide itself. Therefore, an archer acts as an itelligent and supreme being in order to help the archer achieve its telos

- Aquinas was influenced by Aristotle's concept of cause and effect, and so introduced it to his analogy: the effect is the arrow reaching its target, and the cause of this is the archer

Paley's Argument

- 'Natural Theology': 18th Century

- It is easy to assume that a watch found on a heath came into being with the agency of a watchmaker, as complexity needs an intelligent designer. However, if we were to come across a rock, it could be pressumed that it had lain there forever due


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