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

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

Extracts from this document...


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.


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.


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.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Existence of God 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 GCSE Existence of God essays

  1. Outline the key features of the Cosmological Argument for the existence of God

    explanation for its existence at all, it is just there and according to him and it doesn't need any explanation whatsoever. 'I should say that the universe is just there, and that's all'. However, followers of the argument have responded by saying: the CA offers key unexplained answers about the

  2. Explain the Ontological argument.

    For while the existence of a moral God would indeed suggest the existence of moral laws in one form or another this cannot prove the existence of any God, let alone the God of classical theism. What is the problem with evil?

  1. Birth Of The Universe

    Imagine that our film is a shimmering bubble. When those seeds of energy began filling the space - began landing within the bubble that is your universe - they created interference patterns, ripples. None of them were "visible." Some were elliptical; others, symmetrical. They began to "fill the space."

  2. Bertrand Russell and Atheism.

    Nietzsche saw death as the ultimate liberation. He even emphasized the desire he has to freely choose when he dies. Walter Kaufmann, an atheistic author, affirms this when he says, "We should also give up the unseemly Christian teachings about suicide and accept it as a dignified and decent way of ending our lives."

  1. What are the key ideas of the cosmological argument for the existence of God?

    and its' potential is the fact that fire can make it hot. However, something must have changed to make the fire change and become alight. Aquinas refused to accept that there was a 'series of infinite changes' and concluded that there must have been a point at which the first change occurred, set off by a 'First Mover.'

  2. A Big Bang Cosmological Argument for God's Nonexistence

    say when I am trying to give Hume a run for his money, I cannot really believe in anything beginning to exist without being caused (in the old-fashioned sense of produced or generated) by something else which existed before and up to the moment when the entity in question began to exist.

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