Two Proofs for the Existence of God? With the establishment of fundamental truths such as the existence of Godwe will be able to build a system of knowledge on a robust and certain bedrock. By introducing the second proof for the existence of God, Descartes can avoid any possible self-contradiction in his earlier causal argument.
At the beginning of our new rationalistic system that will allow us to finally be absolutely certain about the knowledge we may gain, why would we want to limit its scope?
To affirm the concept of God, yet deny the existence of God would be a contradiction. Moreover, knowing how prone we, as human beings, are to error, should we not be cautious in the pronouncements of such limits.
Although in the process of inquiry we may find that further argumentation, experimentation, or rationalization may fail to discover a certain truth about event or proposition X, to limit ourselves from the outset from trying to attain the truth about X appears to be self-defeating.
And it is from this solid base that we will be able to add other certain truths to our system of knowledge.
Descartes maintains that there are ideas of particular objects or entities in our minds that are demonstrable, yet have not been experienced. In the fifth meditation, Descartes advances a proof for the existence of God using reason alone. Descartes believed that with the employment of a rational method of inquiry which applied some of the methods of analytic geometry to the study of philosophy, our ability to attain certainty and validity about our knowledge would be greatly increased.
It would be analogous to saying that one understands the concept of a triangle i. Although the Mediations is a well-written, and tersely argued treatise, which includes numerous examples and analogies to algebra i. I can no more think of God as not existing than I can think of a mountain without a valley, nevertheless it surely does not follow from the fact that I think of a mountain without a valley that a mountain exists in the world.
Yet, one must also assume the Descartes was aware of the possible fault in resting the existence of God on the argument in the third meditation. In the development of this concept, we are assured that a supreme being lacking in nothing would obviously possess the property of existence.
Although there are many problematic notions and strong objections to certain lines of argumentation and conclusions in the Meditations, Descartes believes that he has succeeded in this part of his project namely providing incontrovertible proof for the existence of God.
Descartes would like to argue that God is so important to our acquisition of knowledge that even the certainty of geometrical demonstrations will depend upon the knowledge of God.
And although, in a sense, I think them at will, nevertheless they are not something I have fabricated; rather they have their own true and immutable natures.
It appears evident that the establishment of a system of inquiry which aims at acquiring true and certain knowledge that limits itself to particular truths or states of affairs is tremendously problematic.
It is powerful because the role certainty and truth plays in our lives, and in turn the acquisition of knowledge, is tremendously important. Yet, knowing that Descartes partially bases his deductive methodology on mathematics, it is surely questionable why he felt the need to have two distinct proofs.
Aware of the possible appearance of sophism, Descartes states: Yet this will not be sufficient for Descartes, for we can imagine theoretical entities such as unicorns that we know do not exist.
Through a critical examination of the arguments advanced by Descartes in his most prominent work, Meditations on First Philosophy, regarding the existence of God and the role God plays in the acquisition of certain knowledge, we are able to see that although the goals of the Cartesian project were laudable, the presence of numerous philosophical inconsistencies and presumptive conjecture weakened its validity beyond repair.
If we are to succeed in our project of attaining fundamental and certain knowledge, it will depend on the existence of a benevolent God who allows us to access this knowledge.
For Descartes, it does not appear essential to have to establish that for every mountain there will be a valley - he only has to identify the fact that when we think of the concept of a mountain, the concept of its accompanying valley is explicit and incontrovertible.
Hence even if I no longer attend to the reasons leading me to judge this to be true, so long as I merely recall that I did clearly and distinctly observe it, no counter-argument can be brought forward that might force me to doubt it.Some completely neglect the existence of god, others toy with the idea, and some use religion as the basis of their epistemology.
Throughout this essay, I aim to critically examine the role of God in Descartes’ epistemology. If Descartes were to have only presented the causal proof for the existence of God, the internal coherence of this epistemology could be severely damaged or compromised if this relationship between cause and effects were to breakdown - especially since God plays the most important role in Descartes epistemic theory.
Feb 03, · Well Descartes thought that God's existence could be proved through reason alone. As Descartes has the idea of God in his mind, he is able to define 'God' without at Status: Resolved.
The presence of God, and more so the role god plays in our lives, has forever troubled philosophers. Some completely neglect the existence of god, others toy with the idea, and some use religion as the basis of their epistemology. Throughout this essay, I aim to critically examine the role of God in Descartes’ epistemology.
The role of God in Descartes’ Meditations The Meditations begin with, and take as their theme, the search for truth and what we can know. And so in Meditation VI, Descartes seeks to resolve the issues that led him into doubt about what was true in the first place.
To do this, he needs to establish, in reverse. As I previously said, God plays a significant role to Descartes’ Meditations, including the proof of God’s existence.
Descartes goes through numerous proofs of God’s existence through-out his Meditations, starting in Meditation 3 and continuing onto the end.Download