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Explain two versions of the ontological argument for the existence of God

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Introduction

Transfer-Encoding: chunked ´╗┐Explain two versions of the ontological argument for the existence of God Ontological Arguments are based on ontology which is the study of the nature of being. They attempt to prove the existence of God on an entirely logical basis using 'a priori' (without empirical evidence) reasoning and deduction (reasoning by logical premises to reach a conclusion). In Anselm's ontological argument he begins with a definition of the God before going on to argue that existence is a predicate (quality) of God. He defines God as 'a being that which nothing greater can be conceived'. In this context 'greater' is synonymous with 'perfect' and conceived refers to anything that can be thought of. ...read more.

Middle

In other words, God must exist in re (in reality) not just in the mind (in intellectu) or else he would not be perfect. In Anselm's second form of his argument he argues that God not only exists but he is a necessary being (self-causing) and by extension cannot not exist. He makes the point that if God existed in intellectu alone as a contingent being, then we could conceive of a necessary being which by extension would be more perfect than God. This would be contrary to Anselm's definition of God as a being that which nothing greater could be conceived so therefore God must exist necessarily or without cause. ...read more.

Conclusion

This would be illogical as a supremely perfect being must have 'all the perfections'. In Descartes argument he doesn't require the stating of a definition but instead relies on an innate idea of the perception of God. To further demonstrate his argument he used various analogies to convey the idea of inherent ideas. In one of these analogies he discusses how a triangle must have three sides or else it would cease to be a triangle. Similarly God must be exist necessarily as an innate concept as with the triangle. A being without necessary existence wouldn't be God, just as a shape without three sides wouldn't be a triangle. ...read more.

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