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Author Topic: The importance of the Cosmological argument.  (Read 134 times)

Posts: 3

« on: 11/02/09 @ 16:17 »

Have been studying this in R.S. I think it''s importance has been overlooked, not as an argument for the existence of God, but rather it shows some limits concerning logic (According to my evangelical Christian teacher I am wrong and the argument only shows that God has to exist).

People think that there had to be a first cause; this argument is based on causation and thus logic. This cause apparently had to be ''God''.

Rather, I think that the argument shows that logic did not apply to the beginning of the universe. This could mean a number of things. It could mean that (our) logic only started when our universe started and thus anything could have created a universe. It could also mean that logic is only a limit of our minds rather than of the external world, this means the notion of causation itself is a leap of faith. It could also mean that our logic is just bad logic and that things can happen randomly. There are several other ideas but I''ll begin with these.

If anyone can help me out with these ideas, that is, tell me that I''m right or wrong (and maybe recommend various authors/books) and advise whether I should use them in a A level test, it would be very helpful.
Gareth Southwell

Posts: 48

« Reply #1 on: 12/02/09 @ 09:36 »

Hi Rob,

I think you''re right. Nietzsche has argued that the notions of cause and effect are human constructs, so it is very possible that they are not necessarily related (as, for instance, such as Descartes would argue). Kant''s take on this is also interesting, as he uses the idea of the beginning of the universe as an example of what he terms an "antinomy" - that is, a logical contradiciton that occurs when the limits of reason are reached. So, regarding the beginning of the universe, Kant thought that it was equally plausible that it had to have some beginning as it was that it had always existed. Kant takes this to be a sign that there are some things which, due to the limits of human reason, we just can''t think about.

The main objection to the cosmological argument is of course that it doesn''t actually prove the existence of God, for even if we admit that the universe had to have a beginning, and that there must have been a first cause, there would seem to be no necessary reason for claiming that first cause to be God.

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