preview

Ontological Arguments for the Existence of God

Powerful Essays
In the fifth Meditation, Descartes presents his second argument for the existence of God. Descartes holds that existence is perfection and so, it can be a predicate for God. I will first explain what is the ontological argument for the existence of God. Next, I will discuss why Descartes decides to bring God into His method of philosophy. I will then try to argue that existence is a perfection and that as a predicate for God, existence reveal certain true about God.

Ontological argument tries to prove the existence of God from a priori perspective, i.e., idea implanted in the human mind by God himself. The argument therefore depends on analytic reasoning, from premise to conclusion. Descartes believes that he has an inborn idea which he calls “innate” (p. 43). His ability to think did not cause the idea on his mind, but God’s free will to act. Thereby, as the idea manifest itself to his mind intuitively; it reveals something about its author. The idea allows Descartes to think of a perfect being who must necessarily exist, namely God.

In his epistemological quest for truth, through thought experiment, Descartes’ Meditations offers the reader a method of doubt that could be used in order to discover what is absolutely certain, and free oneself from the errors caused by misjudgments. Descartes’ purpose is to find indubitable truth. He makes used of the method of hyperbolic doubt in order to establish an absolute and convincing foundation of truth. He discovers that sense experience can be put to doubt, but Descartes cannot doubt that he actually doubts. Furthermore, he fears deception about everything. However, he cannot be deceived about his own existence since to be deceived, one must first exist. “I think, therefore I am”. I...

... middle of paper ...

...f a triangle includes three sides, so the idea of God includes His existence. Since Descartes got to prove the God's existence, he holds that man can have confident in his clear and distinct idea and reason. Since God is all-perfect He cannot be a deceiver, if He does, it would undermine His nature. Therefore, the rational mind can now be certain about the clear and distinct truth.

Works Cited

Beardsley, Monroe C. The European Philosophers form Descartes to Niectzsche. New

York: Rondom House, Inc. 2002.

Holt, Tim. “Existence is not a Predicate.” ©2008. Access: Access, Nov. 8 , 2011.

http://www.philosophyofreligion.info/

Robinson, Timothy A. God. 2nd Ed. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, Inc. 2002.

Ross, Kelley L. “The Beginning of Modern Science”. ©2010. Web.

Access, Nov. 12, 2011. 2010

http://www.friesian.com/hist-2.htm#descartes
Get Access