(Aquinas) an attempt to prove God's existence by appealing to "evidence" found in the natural world.
Principle of sufficient reason
(Aquinas) A principle in logic which states that:
- 1.) in any series of explanations there must be a stopping/starting point to avoid "infinite regress"
- 2.) the stopping/starting point must be different from the series being explained.
Argument from motion
(Aquinas) Think about the domino example: nothing can move on its own and needs a first mover to start the motion.
This mover is called the "unmoved mover" (God).
Argument from necessary beings
(Aquinas) All living things are mortal and dependent (contingent), meaning that there must have been a time when nothing existed, and must have originated from a necessary being (God).
Something can't come from nothing.
Proof from the gradation of things (cosmological argument)
(Aquinas) When making a comparative judgment about a living thing we appeal to the maximum of that thing, a being that possesses that quality essentially and is supreme in goodness, truth and in being.
We call this being God.
one which is finite and dependent
a being which has to exist and is independent and infinite
"the love of wisdom"
the study of the nature of reality
the study of the scope and limits of human knowledge
the study of morality, values, and character
critical thinking and logic
belief in a supernatural power
there is one ultimate force in the universe
there are many gods, but I worship one god
human energy, intelligence, resources, etc. should be directed to betterment of humanity
Correspondence theory of truth
something is true if it matches a body of facts
Coherence theory of truth
something is true if it is logically consistent
Darwin's 2 arguments against the teleological argument
- 1.) order does not necessarily imply design; natural processes can explain order.
- 2.) causal explanations are better (more scientific) than teleological ones
Hume's 3 arguments against the teleological argument
- 1.) the watch analogy is not good because we know empirically how watches are made
- 2.) the universe is not like a watch (machine), it is like an organism
- 3.) there is order in the universe, but much of order is a product of the human mind
Origin of Religion
Origin: human aspirations (love, truth, beauty, etc.)
Problems: debases man; alienates man from his true values; creates guilt and shame; creates dependence and hope for an imaginary being and world, respectively
Origin of Religion
Origin: economic inequality and poverty is the real problem; religion temporarily alleviates the pain of real suffering (similar to using a drug)
Solution: economic equality, end of poverty AKA Communism
Origin of Religion
Future of Religion
Religion as mass neurosis
The unconscious mind and memory
Origin: infantile wish-fulfillment
Future: always be here because people need it unconsciously
Mass Neurosis: many people believe in a God, making it real (logical fallacy)
The Unconscious: we still remember infancy and dependence on parents
3 Stages of life (Kierkegaard)
- 1.) Aesthetic: characterized by the search for pleasure, variety, etc. (young people; teens, young adults)
- 2.) Ethical: characterized by duty, reason, commitment, etc. (get older, settle down, have a family)
- 3.) Religious: leap of faith in belief in God (search for meaning in life)
Characteristics of faith
Passionate (emotional, not logical), subjective, irrational, divine madness, paradoxical
choose to believe in God in order to have meaning in life.
consequences of belief
Pragmatic theory of meaning
a claim is meaningful if it affects the way I behave
Pragmatic theory of truth
a claim is true if acting on my belief is confirmed by my experience
- Live: a belief which is credible and important to me
- Dead: a belief which is NOT credible and important to me