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

What is the cosmological argument?

Extracts from this document...


What is the cosmological argument? (33) The cosmological argument is a 'posteriori' argument; this means that unlike the ontological argument in derives that God exists from empirical observations of the world and the universe to conclude that there was a first cause behind it. This argument demonstrates that things come into existence because an external object or thing has caused them to, in a succession of event. However, this succession of events cannot go back to the beginning of time, therefore there must have been a necessary being outside of time and place, that brought things into existence and the cosmological argument states that this is God. Aquinas propagated the popular form of the cosmological argument. He developed five ways to prove the existence of God; the first three are used in the cosmological argument. The first way is based in motion. In order words things move due to an applied external force, for example a hand pushes the cue, which moves the snooker ball. According to Aquinas infinite regress does not exist, eventually it comes back to the first cause, God. The motion concept does not only apply to movement from place to place, but movement from quality or quantity, which when an external force is applied changes. ...read more.


Therefore the universe has to have a first cause which Craig argues is God. Once Craig had established God as creator of the universe he attempted to prove God as personal creator. Craig argues that if the universe has a beginning it was either caused or uncaused, either it was a natural occurrence or a deliberate action of God. Supporters of the Kalam argument argue that it was a deliberate action of God because the rules of nature have existed since the beginning of time, it could not have possibly been the result of a spontaneous event, and it must be because of God. Therefore the cosmological argument tries to prove Gods existence based on the belief that God created the world 'ex-nihilo'. If the universe was created out of nothing, the beginning of time began with the creation of the universe. Therefore there must have been an external personal agent who existed out of time to will the universe into creation. Aquinas, Craig and supporters of the Kalam argument propagate the first cause of the universe was God. What are the problems with the cosmological argument? ...read more.


Kant argued that the idea that something had a first cause could only be applied to the world of the sense experience. It cannot be applied to a world that we know nothing about. Therefore Kant did not accept any conclusion that God caused the world to begin, because as humans we do not possess the question to transcend our experience. If God is a casual being outside of time and space it is impossible for people to know what God created or God himself. The big bang provides a scientific explanation about the beginning of the universe. Scientific explanation has observed that there was a beginning to the universe and it developed an early structure very early in its development. The debate rests upon whether it was the cause of natural or the divine? A random spontaneous event or a deliberate action caused by God. Many philosophers have argued that if there is a first cause there is no evidence to suggest that it is any God let alone the God of classical theism, it could have been anything. The cosmological argument has to many faults for it to alone prove the existence of God. To judge adequately whether God exists one would have to take into account other arguments such as the design argument. ...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. "Modern visions of the Ontological Argument are more successful than early versions"

    So far they are more successful in that they have not been criticised so much but they had an original argument plus original criticisms to construct their arguments from. However, an argument that is constructed purely by using logic and that is no way empirical is not going to be

  2. The design argument depends on key assumptions, in particular that the order in the ...

    one could argue that this would not fit in with Darwin's argument of 'survival of the fittest' as we do not need to appreciate them to survive. As mentioned previously this argument is an inductive argument, thus meaning the premises may be valid but how but however the conclusion is not sound.

  1. Explain the Ontological argument.

    In turn, the wood is made hot by the fire, the external influence. In Aquinas second way he noted that nothing could be the cause of itself, because it would have to exist before it existed which is a logical impossibility.

  2. The Cosmological Argument

    to start everything off. This first cause must be God (as God is the creator, the being that started everything). The third way is the notion of contingency. Things come into being and cease to be. These things are all contingent (dependent on something else for their existence).

  1. The Strengths and Weaknesses of the Cosmological Argument

    for all of time for everything else to continue in a chain of causation that lends itself better to the belief that God, as the first cause, is acting on the world here and now. Like dominoes there has to be something there for the series of dominoes to start;

  2. Birth Of The Universe

    with a certain intensity of light, out of this rippling, out of this interference pattern, emerges a three-dimensional image, a three-dimensional illusion that you can view from all sides. If you try to touch it, you realize it's not solid.

  1. The Ontological Argument.

    It does not exist!]...For if that greater than which cannot be thought can be thought of as not existing, then that greater than which cannot be thought is not that greater than which cannot be thought...

  2. Explain the Ontological argument from Anslem and Gaunillo's objection 9s?

    Thus, Anselm can conclude that his reasoning applies only to possible objects. Anselm might argue that Gaunilo's argument is fundamentally different than his argument. For Gaunilo tries to establish the existence of a kind of thing while Anselm is trying to establish the existence of a particular being .

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