As Known Through Faith A. The Knowability of God I. Formal Anti-Theism Had the Theist merely to face a blank Atheistic denial of God's existence, his task would he comparatively a light one. Formal dogmatic Atheism is self-refuting, and has never de facto won the reasoned assent of any considerable number of men.
As Known Through Faith A. The Knowability of God I. Formal dogmatic Atheism is self-refuting, and has never de facto won the reasoned assent of any considerable number of men. Nor can Polytheism, however easily it may take hold of the popular imagination, ever satisfy the mind of a philosopher.
But there are several varieties of what may be described as virtual Atheism which cannot be dismissed so summarily. There is the Agnosticism, for instance, of Herbert Spencer, which, while admitting the rational necessity of postulating the Absolute or Unconditioned behind the relative and conditioned objects of our knowledge declares that Absolute to be altogether unknowable, to be in fact the Unknowable, about which without being guilty of contradiction we can predicate nothing at all, except perhaps that It exists; and there are other types of Agnosticism.
Then again there is Pantheism in an almost endless variety of forms, all of which, however, may be logically reduced to the three following types: Thus to accomplish even the beginning of his task the Theist has to show, against Agnostics, that Existence of god philosophy essay knowledge of God attainable by rational inference -- however inadequate and imperfect it may be -- is as true and valid, as far as it goes, as any other piece of knowledge we possess; and against Pantheists that the God of reason is a supra-mundane personal God distinct both from matter and from the finite human mind -- that neither we ourselves nor the earth we tread upon enter into the constitution of His being.
Types of Theism But passing from views that are formally anti-theistic, it is found that among Theists themselves certain differences exist which tend to complicate the problem, and increase the difficulty of stating it briefly and clearly.
Some of these differences are brief and clear. A moderate reaction against the too rigidly mathematical intellectualism of Descartes was to be welcomed, but the Kantian reaction by its excesses has injured the cause of Theism and helped forward the cause of anti-theistic philosophy.
Again, though Ontologism -- like that of Malebranche d. This system maintains that we have naturally some immediate consciousness, however dim at first, or some intuitive knowledge of God -- not indeed that we see Him in His essence face to face but that we know Him in His relation to creatures by the same act of cognition -- according to Rosmini, as we become conscious of being in general -- and therefore that the truth of His existence is as much a datum of philosophy as is the abstract idea of being.
Finally, the philosophy of Modernism -- about which there has recently been such a stir -- is a somewhat complex medley of these various systems and tendencies; its main features as a system are: Now all these varying types of Theism, in so far as they are opposed to the classical and traditional type, may be reduced to one or other of the two following propositions: But an appeal to experience, not to mention other objections, is sufficient to negative the first proposition -- and the second, which, as history has already made clear, is an illogical compromise with Agnosticism, is best refuted by a simple statement of the theistic Proofs.
It is not the proofs that are found to be fallacious but the criticism which rejects them. But here again we meet with exaggeration and confusion on the part of those Theists who would substitute for intellectual assent something that does not exclude but presupposes it and is only required to complement it.
And while all admit the validity and sufficiency of the latter method, opinion is divided in regard to the former. Some maintain that a valid a priori proof usually called the ontological is available; others deny this completely; while some others maintain an attitude of compromise or neutrality.
But no strictly a priori conclusion need be more than hypothetically assumed at this stage. A Posteriori Argument St. Thomas Summa Theologica I: For the same reason efficient causes, as we see them operating in this world, imply the existence of a First Cause that is uncaused, i.
The fact that contingent beings exist, i. The graduated perfections of being actually existing in the universe can be understood only by comparison with an absolute standard that is also actual, i.
The wonderful order or evidence of intelligent design which the universe exhibits implies the existence of a supramundane Designer, who is no other than God Himself. To these many Theists add other arguments: One might go on, indeed, almost indefinitely multiplying and distinguishing arguments; but to do so would only lead to confusion.
The various arguments mentioned -- and the same is true of others that might be added -- are not in reality distinct and independent arguments, but only so many partial statements of one and the same general argument, which is perhaps best described as the cosmological. This argument assumes the validity of the principle of causality or sufficient reason and, stated in its most comprehensive form, amounts to this: It is, therefore, mainly a question of method and expediency what particular points one may select from the multitude available to illustrate and enforce the general a posteriori argument.
For our purpose it will suffice to state as briefly as possible the general argument proving the self-existence of a First Cause, the special arguments proving the existence of an intelligent Designer and of a Supreme Moral Ruler, and the confirmatory argument from the general Consent of mankind.
To question its objective certainty, as did Kant, and represent it as a mere mental a priori, or possessing only subjective validity, would open the door to subjectivism and universal scepticism.
It is impossible to prove the principle of causality, just as it is impossible to prove the principle of contradiction; but it is not difficult to see that if the former is denied the latter may also be denied and the whole process of human reasoning declared fallacious.
The principle states that whatever exists or happens must have a sufficient reason for its existence or occurrence either in itself or in something else ; in other words that whatever does not exist of absolute necessity - whatever is not self-existent -- cannot exist without a proportionate cause external to itself; and if this principle is valid when employed by the scientist to explain the phenomena of physics it must be equally valid when employed by the philosopher for the ultimate explanation of the universe as a whole.
In the universe we observe that certain things are effects, i. And this conclusion, as thus stated, is virtually admitted by agnostics and Pantheists, all of whom are obliged to speak of an eternal something underlying the phenomenal universe, whether this something be the "Unknown", or the "Absolute", or the "Unconscious", or "Matter" itself, or the "Ego", or the "Idea" of being, or the "Will"; these are so many substitutes for the uncaused cause or self-existent being of Theism.
What anti-Theists refuse to admit is not the existence of a First Cause in an indeterminate sense, but the existence of an intelligent and free First Cause, a personal God, distinct from the material universe and the human mind.
But the very same reason that compels us to postulate a First Cause at all requires that this cause should be a free and intelligent being.
For the cause in all cases must be proportionate to the effect, i.God and Philosophy [Etienne Gilson] on ashio-midori.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. In this classic work, the eminent Catholic philosopher Étienne Gilson deals with one of the most important and perplexing metaphysical problems: the relation between our notion of God and demonstrations of his existence.
Gilson examines Greek. The One Possible Basis for a Demonstration of the Existence of God (Bison Book S) [Immanuel Kant, Gordon Treash] on ashio-midori.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The search for God is dictated not from without but from a profound sense of one's own moral being and worthiness to be happy.
The core of Immanuel Kant's argument remains relevant to the experience of ordinary men . The One Possible Basis for a Demonstration of the Existence of God (Bison Book S) [Immanuel Kant, Gordon Treash] on ashio-midori.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.
The search for God is dictated not from without but from a profound sense of one's own moral being and worthiness to be happy. The core of Immanuel Kant's argument remains relevant to the experience of ordinary men .
On January 28, the British philosophers F.C. Copleston and Bertrand Russell squared off on BBC radio for a debate on the existence of God. Copleston was a Jesuit priest who believed in God.
Russell maintained that while he was technically agnostic on the existence of the Judeo-Christian God--just as he was technically agnostic on the existence of the Greek gods Zeus and Poseidon--he was.
In monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, creator deity, and principal object of faith. The concept of God, as described by theologians, commonly includes the attributes of omniscience (all-knowing), omnipotence (all-powerful), omnipresence (all-present), and as having an eternal and necessary existence.
Depending on one’s kind of theism, these attributes are used. IBN SINA. ABU ‘ALI AL-HUSAYN () Ibn Sina (Avicenna) is one of the foremost philosophers in the Medieval Hellenistic Islamic tradition that also includes al-Farabi and Ibn Rushd His philosophical theory is a comprehensive, detailed and rationalistic account of the nature of God and Being, in which he finds a systematic place for the corporeal world, spirit, insight, and the varieties.