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Compare and contrast proof and probability. (10 marks)

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Introduction

´╗┐Compare and contrast proof and probability. (10 marks) Proof derives from a priori grounds which are deductive. A priori is based on solid facts and logic so there is only one possible conclusion. ?An argument which starts from one or more premises, which are prepositions taken for granted for the purpose of the argument, and argues to a conclusion? (Swinburne). In mathematics and logic, a statement is proven if it cannot be proven to be false. For example, 1+1=2 cannot be incorrect as it abides the laws of mathematics. ...read more.

Middle

A posteriori relies on our senses rather than on facts which causes there to be many possible conclusions; the most probable answer is taken as the conclusion. The inductivity of a posteriori arguments always leaves a door for doubt and uncertainty. Probability measures the likelihood of a conclusion to be true; the most probable answer however is not the only conclusion. A problem with proofs is the dependence of limited human experiences and resources. As a priori relies on logical reasoning, there is an area exposed to flaws since the human reasoning may be inadequate or limited in knowledge. ...read more.

Conclusion

features of human experience? (Swinburne). Furthermore, there may be an alternative conclusion which is just as convincing as the other; the conclusion chosen is based on the person?s opinion. An advantage of a priori arguments is that they are appealing to logic and reason and so is understood better. The ontological argument sets out to prove that it is logically impossible to believe in the non-existence of god, using factual premises in order for the conclusion to be deductive. Although a posterior arguments are not deductive, they are convincing because they can be experienced which may be factual for some people. The cosmological and teleological arguments are a posteriori arguments therefore the conclusions are inductive and rely on probability. ...read more.

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