God Cannot Be Thought Of As Nonexistent

Document Type:Essay

Subject Area:Philosophy

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Anselm of Canterbury from 1033 to 1109, which uses ontology to explain the existence of God. Anselm defined God as the most exceptional conceivable being in chapter two of his famous book titled Proslogion. The theory is a priori kind of argument that attempts to prove God's existence by applying logic and reasoning. Further, the effort to provide evidence on the existence of God became practical from the time when the human being was born. But to adequately prove the existence of God a lot of reasoning, as well as interpretation, must be involved to convince the masses sincerely, and this is precisely what Anselm tries to do. On this paper, I will explain Anselm's ontological argument and illustrate how it may adequately prove the existence of the most magnificent conceivable being (Anselm 82). I will argue that everyone can consider the theory to be sound and valid since Anselm's conclusion correctly follows his premises. Also, I will support Anselm's argument indicating how unconvincing the opposing theory is. My primary focus will be the criticism of the argument from Gaunilo of Marmoutiers. Ontological arguments are a set of reasons that essentially gives the conclusion that God exists mainly from premises derived from specific sources as opposed to an observation of the world. From his Proslogion book chapter one and two, St. Anselm alleges to procure God's existence from the perception of a being than which no greater can be conceived. He argues that this being have to exist in mind even in the psyche of those individuals who refute the existence of God.

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He affirmed that as long as the greatest being existed in mind, it should also be real. Therefore it is apparent that anyone can conceive of God, whereas conceiving of something, primarily means to think about it undoubtedly and distinctly. Thus we can be sure that God can exist in conception and this serves as the premise for the first Anselm argument which would make more sense in viewing God as the ultimate being so that nothing higher than God can exist. Nevertheless, what the atheists tend to disagree with as well as what the agnostic refuses to deny or assert is that God exists in reality. Anselm starts his argument by bringing in "the fool" who "has alleged that in his heart, there is no God. But Anselm argues that "when the fool has the sense of hearing of a being than which nothing greater can be thought, understands what he hears, and what he understands is in his understanding (Anselm).

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” However, concerning Anselm's claim that a fool is also obliged to admit the existence of the greatest conceivable being in mind; I would argue that this could be a sound argument to prove the existence of God because if God can exist in comprehending, subsequently He ought to exist in realism. Anselm states that "humans and other inanimate things are contingent; depending on other things for survival and are not in any way necessary" illustrating that God must exist either as a necessary or a contingent being (Andrew). Therefore God's existence is essential, and as a consequence, God exists. Arguing from this perspective, it is logically impossible for God to be a contingent unreality item and therefore merely one option remains, and that is of a necessary being. This Indicates that God must exist because He is a necessary being.

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Consequently, Anselm's argument can be considered as both valid and sound by examining its premises. There must be a substantial proof to believe that something exists and concluding that God has to exist for one to understand, is false because there exist a lot of things in the world that cannot be proven to exist but yet we know them. He argues that the explanation of a concept than which nothing greater can be conceived is the only perceptions that permit both of them to prove the subsistence of God and the ideal island (Thomas 130). By establishing the thought of a perfect island, as incredible, Gaunilo claims that Anselm's concept should also be doubtfully real. A considerable fault with the Gaunilo's opposing theory is his idea of proving the existence of a perfect island using Anselm's argument, interfering with the definite description of an island.

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An infinitely big ideal island is impossible since a vast size cannot be surrounded by water considering the real nature of an island. Andrew, Chapman. “The Ontological Argument for the Existence of God” 1000WordPhilosophy 30 June 2014 https://1000wordphilosophy. com/2014/06/30/the-ontological-argument-for-the-existence-of-god/ 21 March 2018 Ward, Thomas M. Losing the lost island.  International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 83.

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