Can God Microwave a Burrito So Hot, Even He Cannot Eat It? August Staubus I will begin with a convenient distinction described by Hume: the difference between relations of ideas and matters of fact. To alter any relation of ideas is to entail a contradiction, and therefore impossible. Thus, “the sciences of Geometry, Algebra, and Arithmetic” as well as analytic propositions are off limits for even an omniscient deity. Yet even with the power of omniscience limited in such a manner, certain logical impossibilities remain, such as the one queried in the title. In response to this, I turn to an argument posited by Thomas Aquinas, namely that an omniscient being can do anything so long as its subject is compatible with its predicate, and it
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In Hume’s Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion we are introduced to three characters that serve the purpose to debate God and his nature, more specifically, what can mankind infer about God and his nature. The three characters; Demea, Philo, and Cleanthes all engage in a debate concerning this question and they all serve the purpose of supporting their views on the subject. It is the “argument from design” put forth by Cleanthes that is the focal point of the discussion, and it is Demea and Philo who attempt to discredit it.
Philosophers have for long debated on the existence of a Supreme all powerful and all perfect God, Kant, and Anselm being among them. Where Anselm has supported the presence of God and all the attributes that regard to the Him, Kant has risen up with a counter argument. The interaction between the two, the philosophical objection raised by Kant, and what this means to the rest of mankind will be analyzed in this paper.
In the construction of the Large Hardon Collider, physicists seek and hope to unlock the mysteries of the universe by analyzing the attributes of the most miniscule particles known to man. In the same way, theologians have argued back and forth over the course of human history with regards to the divine attributes of God, seeking and hoping to unlock the mysteries of the metaphysical universe. Although these many attributes, for example omnipresence, could be debated and dissected ad nauseum, it is within the scope of this research paper to focus but on one of them. Of these many divine attributes of God, nothing strikes me as more intriguing than that of God’s omnipotence. It is intriguing to me because the exploration of
In this paper, I will discuss how three influential scholars in this order: Augustine, Aquinas, Galileo, delimit science or the bible and the ways their beliefs overlapped or didn’t.
The traditional God in the Judeo-Christian tradition is known to be as an “Omni-God” possessing particular divine attributes such as omniscient, which means he knows everything he is also omnipotent, or all powerful. God has also been said to be also he is omnipresence which means he exists in all places and present everywhere, however there are many philosophical arguments on whether if any of that is actually true or if there is a God at all. This paper argues that it is not possible to know whether the traditional God exists or not. While there have been philosophers such as Aquinas, Anselm, Paley and Kierkegaard who are for god and present strong argument, likewise philosopher like Nietzsche and arguments like the problem of evil both make valid point on why God isn’t real.
To prevent the possible hypothetical problem of infinite regression, Aquinas believes in an unmoved mover. Based on the foundations of Aristotle’s God the unmoved mover who thinks about nothing but himself as in thinking about other things would cause movement and contradict his state of unmovement. In the same way, Aquinas adopts the same model of an unmoved god who first puts other things in motion. However, unlike Aristotle, Aquinas merely adopts the idea of contingency to postulate a non-antideity. From the bases of causation and motion we arrive at two attributes of God ‘unmoved mover’ and ‘uncaused first cause’. with motion, “nothing else than the reduction of something from potentiality to actuality” therefore cannot be simultaneously in actuality and
Scientific reasoning has brought humanity to incredibly high levels of sophistication in all realms of knowledge. For Saint Thomas Aquinas, his passion involved the scientific reasoning of God. The existence, simplicity and will of God are simply a few topics which Aquinas explores in the Summa Theologica. Through arguments entailing these particular topics, Aquinas forms an argument that God has the ability of knowing and willing this particular world of contingent beings. The contrasting nature of necessary beings and contingent beings is at the heart of this debate.
While Hume would disagree with Descartes’ proof for God’s existence as well as what influence God has on our thoughts, they would both agree that our knowledge and imagination do not come from within ourselves. Furthermore, both provide skeptical analyses of our experiences as humans that question reality, such as when Descartes’ recognizes the uncertainty of the existence of anything beyond his own mind, or when Hume questions whether we can conceive of anything we have yet to experience externally. Therefore, while the philosophers have marked differences, they share a fundamentally skeptical inquiry of the
David Hume’s Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion provide conflicting arguments about the nature of the universe, what humans can know about it, and how their knowledge can affect their religious beliefs. The most compelling situation relates to philosophical skepticism and religion; the empiricist character, Cleanthes, strongly defends his position that skepticism is beneficial to religious belief. Under fire from an agnostic skeptic and a rationalist, the empiricist view on skepticism and religion is strongest in it’s defense. This debate is a fundamental part of the study of philosophy: readers must choose their basic understanding of the universe and it’s creator, upon which all other assumptions about the universe will be made.
Because it is so prominent, everyone notices that a central concern of Hume's Dialogues is empirical natural theology—how one can discern from Nature, using empirical facts and "experimental" forms of inference available to anyone, the existence and nature of an Author of Nature. But few connect this concern to the simple fact that the Dialogues is itself authored. It is a text with an author, David Hume. At the very least, then, on Cleanthes's approach, (3) there should be some resemblances between the world and this text, insofar as they both imply an intelligent "author;" at the most, this analogy of authorship might prove even more fruitful for theological understanding than the mechanical and biological analogies mentioned by the characters in Hume's text. By this, I do not mean that we can prove God's
Medieval philosophers developed very precise notions of God and the attributes that he has, many of which are even now well-known among believers. For example, God is all-powerful all-knowing and all-good Other commonly discussed attributes of God are that he is eternal, that he is present everywhere and that he has foreknowledge of future events. While these traditional attributes of God offer a clear picture of the kind of being that he is, many of them present special conceptual problems, particularly when we try to make them compatible them with potentially conflicting facts about the world.
Prior to Galileo’s time, the Greek and medieval mind, science was a kind of formalism, a means of coordinating data, which had no bearing on the ultimate reality of things. The point was to give order to complicated data, and all that mattered was the hypothesis that was simplest to understand and most convenient. Astronomy and mathematics were regarded as the playthings of intellectuals. They were accounted as having neither philosophical nor theological relevance. There was genuine puzzlement among Churchmen that they had to get involved in a quarrel over planetary orbits.
The 17th century philosopher Rene Descartes believed that God exists. His proof of an all perfect being’s existence was explained by having an idea of God that had to have been caused by God. But simply having an idea of God is not enough for there to necessarily exist such a being. This paper will critically examine Descartes’s causal argument though its premises and conclusion.
Descartes's fifth Meditation argument for God's existence relies on an untenable notion that existence is a perfection and that it can be predicated of God. I shall first explain what Descartes's argument for God's existence is, and then present his argument in propositional form. I will then attempt to support the argument that existence is neither a perfection nor a predicate of God.
In this paper, we will discuss only 5 of these attributes: omnipotence, immutability, impassibility, timelessness and omniscience. Gregory Boyd summarizes these 5 attributes in his book Is God to Blame? (pp 42-43)