• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explain the Ontological Argument + Kant's Argument has Finished all Arguments

Extracts from this document...


Transfer-Encoding: chunked ´╗┐Explain the Ontological Argument The Ontological argument uses deductive reasoning to prove the existence of God. The Ontological argument is before experience ? a priori. This is opposed to a posteriori which is after an experience. This means that the Ontological argument is objective. All Ontological arguments have a series of premises and a conclusion that, if the premises are true, must also be true as well. An example of a deductive, a priori reasoning is 2+2=4. This does not need evidence to know it is true. The scholars mentioned will be using this method prove God?s existence. Saint Anselm is one of the first philosophers to use deductive reasoning. He had two main ideas. The first was found in the Proslogion 2. Anselm used the famous saying God is, ?that which nothing greater can be conceived (TWNGCBC).? This is another way of saying that God is the greatest being to exist. Anselm?s premises are: God exists in the mind ? we can think of a God so God exists mentally. It is greater to exist in mind and reality together than in mind alone. ...read more.


Plantinga also used necessary existence, but unlike Anselm and Descartes, both he and Malcolm didn?t use it as a predicate. In a possible world God exists, but God has necessary existence so God must exist in all possible worlds. If God exists in all possible worlds then God must exist in this world therefore God exists. Kant?s Argument Has Finished All Ontological Arguments Kant?s objection to the Ontological argument can be seen by some to have finished the Ontological argument and it can be seen as irrelevant to others. Immanuel Kant is a theist philosopher who is well known for criticising many different arguments for the existence of God. Kant disliked both Anselm?s and Descartes? Ontological argument. To Kant existence is not a predicate ? which was the key argument in Proslogion 2 and Descartes? argument. Kant used the example of thalers (currency in Europe during the 1800s when Kant was alive) to prove his point. Kant said that if you add existence to a list of other predicates no one would think any differently about thalers. Since nothing in our minds change when we use existence as a predicate, existence cannot be a predicate. ...read more.


In the argument there is a possible world where God exists necessarily. This means God must exist in all possible worlds necessarily and as a result God exists in our world. I think this shows that Kant has not finished all Ontological arguments because Kant?s argument was based on existence not being a predicate. However, Alvin Plantinga?s argument was not based off existence being a predicate at all. This means that Kant?s argument is irrelevant when using Plantinga?s argument for Gods existence. In addition, Malcolm also created his version of the Ontological argument. His argument does not use existence as a predicate either. Instead Malcolm uses deduction to have God end up as an unlimited, necessary being or as impossible to exist. Since there is always a possibility of such a being to exist, God must exist. Since Malcolm?s argument has no relevance to Kant?s criticism based on existence not being a predicate, Malcolm?s argument has not been finished. Overall, I believe that Kant?s argument has not finished the Ontological argument because clearly Kant has misunderstood Anselm?s argument. Also, his argument has no relevance to Plantinga or Malcolm. His argument may have finished Descartes argument but the others are still strong. So, Kant?s argument that existence is not a predicate is not strong enough to finish all the Ontological arguments. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Philosophy section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Philosophy essays

  1. The Ontological Argument - Critique

    Kant did not criticise Anselm, although he may have had access to his work, he instead attacked Descartes formulation of the argument. Descartes, in the midst of doubting all he knew, famously reaching the conclusion "Cogito ergo sum", thought that if he could know of God, he could work forward

  2. Analyze the distinctive features of the Ontological Argument

    it must have three sides however , if you do not have the triangle , you have neither its three sides nor its three degrees. Hence if there is no perfection there is no existing God. Additionally he argued that if one accepts that there is a God its reasonable to accept his existence.

  1. Is active citizenship necessary to the achievement of eudaimonia?

    Aristotle follows this with a further remark that grounds his argument in the practical. A recurring theme in The Politics relates to what might be done if one man is clearly superior in mind to all others in a state.

  2. Compare and contrast the contributions of Descartes and Humes on the issue of the ...

    but this means that they would discredit each other because noreligion believes in the same things. Hume argues that miracles fail to prove the existence of God because they lack creditability.Hume could also argue that even if miracles did exist, what proof is there that thay are from God.

  1. Examine the major features of the Ontological argument for the existence of God.

    The weakness with his argument, the weakness that causes it to fail is step 6 which is very suspicious and an atheist could argue with justification that God's existence was impossible.

  2. Outline the Ontological Argument for the existence of God.

    ?God exists? is argued to be an analytical statement because its predicate is contained within the subject, however critics argue that being and existence is not a real predicate and therefore this statement could be a synthetic statement relying on empirical evidence for Gods existence, this relies on there being


    both in the intellect and outside it, it does not follow that there is no possibility of God not existing. And so he concludes that God has to exist and cannot fail to exist.

  2. Explain Descartes' Ontological Argument

    This again rests on the doctrine of clear and distinct ideas. Descartes argues that what one can perceive clearly and distinctively is true. Because we can clearly and distinctively perceive the connection between God and God?s existence, it follows that God must exist.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work