St Anselm of Canterbury: Ontological Argument for Gods Existence

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St Anselm of Canterbury was the first to come up with an ontological argument for Gods existence. An ontological argument is one that concerned with establishing the existence of some being or entity unlike other arguments purporting to prove the abstract existence or non-existence. The ontological arguments rely on reflections of the content of the concept under consideration. St Anselm described his ontological arguments in the Proslogiumin the second and third chapters of his text He defines God as the being than which nothing greater can be conceived, viewing God existence as an idea in ones mind. Through a series of arguments, he finally concludes that God exists. He argues that since an entity greater than God cannot be conceived to be non-existent, then it surely does exist. Some philosophers have commented that the third chapter arguments are a restatement of the second chapter.

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Gaunilo of Marmoutier brought forth a counterexample to the ideas of St Anselm. He used an island and using the same manner of concept reflection; he reveals the weakness of St Anselm arguments. From the experiment, one can view the see the illegitimate relationship between the existence of an idea and the existence of that which is the idea of the reality. Anselm's medications create God into existence in the reality based on the existence of God in the mind. Thus, it becomes apparent that his argument does not prove the existence of God.

The ontological argument is based on God being referred to as the being than which nothing greater can be conceived and from that definition, the argument can be brought down. The term greater implies the status of God. However, the trait upon which the quality describes is not clear. Greater can describe the characteristics that may not necessarily be associated with God. Furthermore, the claim that if something is maximally great it cannot be denied is wrong since the argument is something that exists in all worlds is not greater than that which does not exist in all worlds.

St Thomas also argued against the legibility of the Anselms argument based on the level of understanding of the supposed fool. Anselm ideas are meant to show the fool that the understanding of the claim that God exists and does not believe that God exists is not stable but that God does exist. Therefore, the atheist is mistaken but also inconsistent. St Thomas addresses the idea of different people having different concepts of God, and, therefore, the definition of God is different.

Kant criticized the existence of perfection. He argues that existence is based on the property of being and that existence does not function as a predicate. For a being to be in existence, it must have properties to which define it to be in existence. The predicate should be of the subject being and therefore, the existence would not add to the essence of the being but rather it is an indication of the occurrence of the being in reality.

It is argued that the ontological argument proves nothing if the only existence and the maximal greatness should the great being exists. The question that is left open is the specificity of the one true God. It, therefore, is regarded non-useful to any particular religions apologetics.

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