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Frederick Copleston and Bertrand Russell's and their responses to the Cosmological argument.

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Introduction

Frederick Copleston and Bertrand Russell's and their responses to the Cosmological argument During the 18th century, Copleston referred to Leibnitz and also to Aquinas's third way to formulate his argument. The key component to Leibnitz's version of the cosmological argument originates from the thinking of Anaximander, who stated that the Earth must be at rest, because there is no more reason for it to move up than to move down. Archimedes said a balance with equal weights stays level for the same reason. This claim rests on the principle that there must be a reason for everything. The principle cannot be proved, but if it is true it supports the Cosmological Argument. ...read more.

Middle

Clearly something has kept natural things in existence, because they obviously exist now. Consequently, Copleston concluded that everything within the universe must be contingent, the universe being the sum total of all things contingent. The universe must depend upon something to endure existence; nothing within our universe can be the cause of this existence so the cause must be external to our universe. This must be what we know to be God. Therefore God is 'de re necessary' and exists independently of everything else. Bertrand Russell argues frankly on the contrary to Coplston, stating, like Hume, that there should be no reason to assume that because we live within a cause effect universe, that forces beyond the universe should operate likewise. ...read more.

Conclusion

However, if one agrees with Russell that part of the universe is totally independent, then the dependent parts of the universe would depend upon the independent part of the universe for their existence. Theologically, the universe displays remarkable similarities with what we know to be products of intelligent design. The design, order, and conditions for life found in the universe are better explained by the theistic hypothesis. It does not bear a resemblance to what we know to be products of random, mindless causes making the design in the universe probable. Therefore, the design argument shows theism to be more probable than atheism. Demonstrating that Copleston's argument is of greater viability to Russell's. Rebecca Birch. Philosophy. ...read more.

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