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Flashcards in The Cosmological Argument Deck (9)
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What is Aquinas's first way?

1) It is certain and evident to our senses that things around us are in motion
2) Motion involves change
3) All changes in the world are due to some cause
4) Therefore, there must be a first cause to this entire sequence of changes
5) We call this cause God


What is Aquinas's second way?

1) The world is a sequence of events
2) Every event in the world is a result of some cause
3)There must be a cause for the whole sequence
4) We call this cause God


What is Aquinas's third way?

1) The world might not have been
2) Anything that exists in the world depends on some other thing for its existence
3) Therefore the world must depend on some other thing for its existence
4) We call that thing God


Which of Aquinas's ways are about causation and which is about contingency?

Ways 1 and 2 are about causation. Way 3 is about contingency.


What is the Kalam cosmological argument?

1) Everything that begins to exist has a cause
2) The universe began to exist
3) Therefore, the universe has a cause and we call this cause God


What is Descartes's cosmological argument (in 5 premises)?

1) We have an idea of God as an infinite being
2) Everything must have a cause (the causal principle)
3) Our idea of God must have a cause
4) Our idea of God cannot come from anything less than an infinite power (the causal adequacy principle)
5) Therefore the idea of God must come from an infinite power, namely God


What is Hume's criticism of the cosmological argument?

He focuses on the nature of causation, and suggests that while causes and effects are constantly conjoined, they are isolated happenings which just happen to occur together. He claims that there is no necessary connection between cause and effect. For this reason, it is possible that the universe (the effect) simply does not have a cause.


What is Russell's criticism of the cosmological argument?

He focuses on explanation. The argument, he claims, involves the fallacy of composition; while everything in the universe requires an explanation, it does not follow that the universe itself requires an explanation. He speaks of the universe existing as a brute fact.


What is another criticism of the cosmological argument?

If everything in the universe has a cause, what caused God?