While proving the reality of God seems to be counterproductive to the belief, numerous philosophers have attempted to outline various arguments that aim to prove the existence of such a power. Most assertions formulate themselves on the fact that God is un-perceivable and, therefore, must be shown to exist without an appeal to the senses. Thus, identifying the merit of these arguments may allow taking an informed stance on the corresponding scholarly discussion.
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The Definition of God and Common Historical Arguments
Before beginning a discussion on the nature of God’s existence, it is necessary to outline what scholars and philosophers mean when they speak about a divine power. God is a “supremely perfect being,” who is good and has the potential to create and, thus, is argued by Descartes’s ontological argument to be existent based on the sole fact of being ideal (Feser 3). Additionally, the universe’s creator must be more intricate than his creation, and, since everything in the world requires an originator as per the first cause argument, God is said to be the omnipotent designer (Feser 252). Consequently, the most popular historical arguments for God’s existence base themselves on the necessity of a starting point, instituted by a flawless creator.
Appraisal of Arguments
These approaches, however, raise the question of who created God, initializing an eternal hierarchy of perfect and omnipresent beings, testing both the first cause and designer argument. The presence of evil, which God seemingly allows, may question the moral aspect of his existence, but only if apperceived atheistically (Benton et al. 24). Thus, while none of these counterarguments disparage the existence of God, questioning the nature of his divinity instead, the ontological argument remains one of the more sound approaches. Its durability stems from its explanation that without a divine power people could not harbor the idea of one. If one believes that God may be proven to exist, then the chosen argument makes the best case by addressing God as the source of human knowledge about himself, made impossible without his actuality.
Giving an argument promoting the existence of God may require a logic-based approach that seeks to question the origins of such an idea. The presence of evil and the possibility of multiple omnipotent divine beings both do not entirely refute the existence of God. Therefore, giving an argument for such existence becomes possible through the ontological argument, as it introduces compelling evidence of such an idea’s presence in the minds of people.
Benton, Matthew A., et al. “Evil and Evidence.” Oxford Studies in Philosophy of Religion, edited by Jonathan Kvanvig, Oxford University Press, 2016, pp. 1-31.
Feser, Edward. Five Proofs for the Existence of God. Ignatius Press, 2017.