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Flashcards in Cosmological Argument Deck (25)
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1

Where does the original form of the cosmological Argument come from?

Thomas Aquinas’s first three ways; the ‘unmoved mover’, the ‘uncaused causer’ and contingency and necessity.

2

How does the cosmological argument work from natural theology?

We can accept the existence of God through the evidence of his work and creations rather than through reason.

3

What does the argument rely upon?

The concept that the whole existence of the universe cannot be explained without the acceptance of a force outside of itself causing it, which is derived from a person’s natural acceptance of this.

4

What was the work in which Aquinas proposed his five ways?

The ‘Summa Theologica’

5

How can Aquinas’s first way, the ‘Unmoved Mover’ be explain?

The ‘unmoved mover’ was responsible for all motion and change contained within the universe, for the universe could not change of its own accord.

6

What did Aquinas say to as to make a case for the ‘Unmoved Mover’?

“If something moved; be moved by itself, then this doesn't explain everything else, as there is more than one thing/being.”

7

Where did Aquinas develop this idea from?

From Aristotle who proposed that if things were to move in the universe, there had to be a mover and an explanation for this mover.

8

What did Aquinas suggest was the ‘Unmoved Mover’?

God

9

What was Aquinas’s second ‘Way’?

The uncaused causer.

10

How can the uncaused causer be explained?

He suggests that everything that has been caused must have been caused by some being. “Nothing in this world could have happened without an efficient cause.” For something to be caused, Aquinas argues that a more powerful force must have caused it and for Aquinas this force must be God.

11

Why does Copelston agree with Aquinas?

He believes that there cannot be an infinite regress.

12

How can the infinite regress be explained?

Since the universe is the sum total of all things that exist within it, none of its contents can be the cause of its existence, the cause for the existence of the universe must be external to it.

13

How does Copelston explain the need for God by using the infinite regress?

He makes a jump in reason and states that the cause for the universe must be self causing and he refers to this as a ‘necessary being,’ this being neither comes into existence nor goes out of existence and must exist independently of anything else and as such is outside the universe.

14

Where else do we see the argument for causation?

In the Kalam Argument – originating in Muslim scholarship – combined with The Big Bang Theory.

15

How does Ed Miller explain the Kalam argument?

An infinite universe would have an infinite number of days, the end of an infinite series of days could never be reached, and if the end could not be reached, then today could not be reached. Therefore time began when the universe began, which science has proven to be The Big Bang.

16

How does the Big Bang provide evidence for the existence of God?

The Big Bang was an event and from experience we know that events are caused and the beginning of the universe was an event, therefore there must have been a cause for this event to take place and this cause can reasonably be explained as God.

17

How can Plato be used to support the cosmological argument?

Our souls are evidence of existence in the world. Plato states “our souls point us towards Heaven” and he uses this concept to make us realise that as we have souls, we must have been created by something with a soul.

18

How does Aristotle support Plato’s view?

He highlights the fact that nothing can come from nothing, so the existence of the universe has to come from something.

19

What is the main problem with the cosmological argument?

It is inductive, “a posteriori” and synthetic therefore meaning that it can only ever reach a probable conclusion and cannot be seen as a proof for the explanation of the universe.

20

What did Stephen Hawking say about science?

Steven Hawking aptly suggested that “although science may answer how the universe began, it cannot answer the question why the universe bothers to exist.”

21

Why does the fact that the universe is not self causing not support the existence of God?

As how can a chain of causation be caused by something which causes itself?

22

How did Hume further the argument against causation?

He maintained the fact that just because everything within the universe has a cause, does not therefore necessarily mean that the universe itself must have a cause, as we have no experiences of universes being made, so we cannot speak meaningfully about the creation of the universe.

23

What is the David Hume quote against the argument from causation?

“Everything that we observe has a cause” to “the universe has a cause” is far too big of a leap in logic.

24

What does Bertrand Russell propose the universe is?

A ‘brute fact’. “I should say that the universe is just there and that’s all.”

25

What is the problem with Russell’s Argument?

It seems to be with an apparent lack of curiosity about the cause and origin of the universe. In Russell’s universe everything would appear to be entirely without reason, which is easily countered by the religious view that the universe is intelligible and the cause of an intelligent creative power.