Argument for Existence of God Essay

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Argument for Existence of God

The real is the rational, and the rational is the real. In philosophical discussion, no statement is, perhaps, more important or more controversial. Yet, this is the very position that I advocate within this paper. The equation of the rational with the real is at the heart of the argument I here consider, that being the ontological argument for the existence of God.
There are several versions of the ontological argument for the existence of God, which is to say that several versions exist. The reason I add the redundancy about the existence of the versions of the arguments is to call attention to the fact that it is a great debate in philosophy what one means by existence and what one can and cannot say of
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Therefore, something than which a greater cannot be conceived so truly is that it is impossible even to conceive of it as not existing. [God exists, and it is impossible to conceive otherwise.]
(Anselm 21)

The reason I wish to consider this version of the argument is that it poses the existence of a being with the quality of necessary existence. Unlike Anselm's more famous argument in which he says that that which exists is greater than that which is merely conceived, this argument is not susceptible to the charge that Anselm means existence to be a perfection. Rather, this argument depends only upon God defined as a necessarily existing being. The reason for preferring the one over the other, then, is not that it may not be possible that existence is a perfection, but that it does not depend upon defending that premise in addition to the premise regarding necessary existence. This second version of Anselm reduces the question of God's existence to the question of necessary existence.
Main challenges to this argument have come from those who claim that there is nothing that can be conceived such that it cannot be conceived as not being. These arguments have come from such philosophers as Immanuel Kant and Bertrand Russell.
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