This definition is necessary in order to agree with Anselm’s premise that there exists things in reality which are greater than things that only reside in the understanding. Also, Anselm does not discuss what a perfect being is. He claims that God cannot be perfect if He exists only in the understanding, but what exactly does being perfect mean? Moreover, Anselm would then need to be able to provide evidence of how God would meet this description. Finally, Descartes proof resonates with me more because he acknowledges that humans are imperfect.
Therefore in this paper, I will argue that Berkeley`s response to skepticism is not successful because he thinks that god is the base of knowledge. Before I begin to prove my thesis I would like to give a little background about skepticism and external world (material world). In this paper, skepticism argues that there is no way that we could know anything and that we live in a place where “knowing” is not possible. Additionally, the material world refers to something that can be perceived, in addition, being the world that we currently interact with. You might ask yourself, “What are the things that are in this certain world?” Well, basically everything that is not the mind is considered to be part of this world.
What I want to know is how we can conceive the existence of something that is beyond all that is conceivable. While there are obvious problems with his logic, Anselm firmly believes that God is the greatest of all beings. This is exactly what Aquinas believes, only his argument is much clearer. First, he asks "whether it can be demonstrated that God exists." This is an important question because if it cannot be demonstrated that God exists, then there is no point in trying to.
Anselm says of God: “We believe that you are something than which nothing greater can be thought.” (Cottingham, 1996: 246) We can put this in shorthand by saying that Anselm understands God to be the greatest conceivable being -- the GCB, for short Now you might protest that you do not use the word "God" in this way. Nevertheless, that does not really matter. If Anselm can show that such a being exists, then he has shown something remarkable whatever you call the being. Furthermore, it is not clear why anyone should resist calling such a being God. Now another worry may occur to you: conceivable by whom?
The Ontological Argument The Ontological Argument, put forth by Saint Anselm in his Proslogium, attempts to prove the existence of God simply by the fact that we have a particular concept of God - that God is "that than which nothing greater can be conceived." Saint Anselm presents a convincing argument that many people view as the work of a genius. It is also quite often considered a failure because, in William L. Rowe's words, "In granting that Anselm's God is a possible thing we are in fact granting that Anselm's God actually exists." In other words, it "assumes the point it is supposed to prove", primarily because is assumes that existence is a great-making quality, and for God to be truly great, he must exist. I disagree with Rowe's point that Anselm's definition of God invalidates his argument because it later helps to prove Anselm's argument.
If the greatest thing that we can conceive does not exist than we can still conceive the greatest thing that does exist, and that would be God. Descartes views God in a similar way to St. Anselm. Descartes sees God as the perfectbeing while St. Anselm describes God as “that than which nothing greater can be thought.” In Descartes “the Argument from Perfection” he reasons that if existence is one of the perfections and God has all the perfections, then God must exist. Along with these arguments others in the Jewish, Christian, and Islamic communities have similar views. Cosmological arguments are... ... middle of paper ... ... one time was not in existence, it has parts that were put together to form the watch, each one of those parts had to be formed and then they were all fit together in harmony to form the watch by the watchmaker.
For all of Anselm’s arguments to work, we would need a notion of content of his proposition that God is the highest human conception. We would also need a correlation between the conception of “being” in a general way of matching up to the idea of a “Supreme Being.” The problem that Anselm has is that there is not a “being” that matches up to the type of “being” that God is. If God were in existence, he would have to be in separable parts and divided into many places if he were to consist of being omnipresent. So He cannot be a perfect “one” being unless he was multiple beings of reality. What Anselm also didn’t cover was the fact of God being a Personal God.
He is saying God is the supreme being and is treated as a primary idea. In addition, Anslem describes God as " truthful, happy and whatever it is better to be than not to be-for it is better to be just rather than unjust, and happy rather that unhappy"(861). This means that God represents everything that is good and real. However, we cant subject God to our thinking because he is greater than our thinking and stands apart from it. Anselm's ontological argument is how he explains God as a necessary cause.
The ideal is always “more perfect” than the real. For this reason, a God that only existed in the intellect would be the best conceivable God because it would avoid the “inherent imperfection” that comes with reality. In this manner, existence is not a perfection. In short, the Cartesian Ontological Argument attempts to prove the existence of God without any claims based on the external material world. Even though, intuitively there seems to be something immediately wrong with the argument, it is difficult to identify the actual mistakes in the argument.
He adds that any person who hears this statement describing God understands what is meant. His argument is that if God did not exist, then a being greater than God would be possible. This being then would be greater than the greatest possible being, which is impossible. Therefore he proves that there is no being greater than God and hence God exists. His argument is also based on the premise that "the idea of an eternal being who either does not yet exist or no longer exists is self-contradictory, so that the very idea we have of such a being requires existence."