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Flashcards in Cosmological Argument Deck (23)
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1

What is the basic Cosmological Argument?

P1: All events require a cause
P2: The universe is an event
P3: The universe requires cause
Conclusion: God caused the universe

2

What does cosmology mean?

The study of the nature and order of the universe

3

What is Aquinas' First way- the Unmoved Mover?

P1: Everything that is in motion or changed by something else
P2: Infinite regress is impossible
P3: Therefore there must be a first mover (changer)
Conclusion: This is God

4

What is Aquinas' second way- the uncaused cause?

P1: Every effect or event requires a cause
P2: Infinite regress is impossible
P3: The universe is an effect (event)
Conclusion: Therefore there must be a first cause- this is God

5

What is the difference between Aquinas first and second way?

Second way focuses more on the efficient caused of all movement

6

What is the major criticism of the First Cause Argument?

Logical contradiction- who made God, who caused God? This is because everything is caused. In response Gods existence is necessary (Aquinas). Not like other beings who are contingent

7

What is Aquinas’ third way?

P1: Everything in the universe is contingent
P2: An infinite regress of contingent things is in unsatisfactory
P3: If everything in the universe has always been contingent then nothing could exist
P4: Empirical observation refutes the above point- the universe exists
Conclusion: the existence of the universe depends upon a non-contingent or necessary being= GOD

8

What is contingent?

Depend on something else for its origin of existence

9

What is necessary being?

Does not depend on anything else

10

Why all contingent beings are said to depend on a necessary being?

If everything has always been contingent then nothing would exist at all. Contingent things depend on a necessary being for the origin of their existence.

11

What is Copleston’s argument?

1) Everything in the universe is contingent: all things in the universe are ‘might not have been’
2) The universe is simply the totality go contingent things and it itself contingent
3) Given the universe is contingent or dependent, there must be something on which it depends- Namely God

Both argue the universe is contingent, reject infinite regress and de re necessary being God

12

What is Bertrand Russell argument?

The universe is ‘just is’. It’s the ultimate brute fact and requires no explanation.
Requires contingency (language).
Rejects necessary being- all statements to do with existence are synthetic not analytic- logically necessity only in maths and grammar

13

What is the Big Bang theory?

The scientific theory that the universe had a beginning in a definite moment in time 13.7 billion years ago- matter, energy and time were created in a singular moment- so called "Necessary conditions" or cosmological or "physical constants"

14

Evidence of the Big Bang?

1) Galaxies appear to be moving away from us at speeds proportional to their distance . This called "Hubble's Law" after Edwin Hubble who discovered the phenomenon in 1929

15

Evidence of the Big Bang?

2) If the universe was initially very very hot as the Big Bang suggests, we should be able to find some remnant of this heat. In 1965 Radio astronomers Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson discovered a 2.725 degree Kelvin Cosmic microwave background radiation (CMB)

16

Evidence of the Big Bang?

3) The abundance of the "light atomic elements" Hydrogen and Helium found in the observable universe are thought to support the Big Bang model of orgins

17

Challenges to the standard Big Bang

1) Continuous creation- matter and energy is continually coming into existence and different parts of the universe
2) Oscillating universe theory- infinite series of cycles- expansion and contractions
3) Infinitely expanding universe model- universe will expand forever (BUT could point to a start e.g. Big Bang)
4) Both science and religion agree that there needs to be an explanation for the PHYSICAL CONSTANTS or "fine-tuning" for the Big Bang
God or naturalistic?

18

David Hume's objections?

1) Like cause resemble like effects
2) We have experiences of universe being made
3) No proposition about existence is logically necessary
4) The words 'necessary being' have no consistent meaning
5) 'necessary being' only refers to an 'imperishable being'
6) An infinite regression of causes and effects is possible

19

Hume: Like causes resemble like effects?

- If we observe an effect- it is reasonable to assume that the cause of the universe is similar to the things in the universe
- If God is the cause of the universe and the universe is infinite, then God is also finite, thus makes God anthropomorphic
- The most we can assume is a naturalistic explanation based on evidence not a supernatural one which goes beyond the evidence

20

Hume: We have no experience of the universe being made?

We have empirical knowledge about cause and effect within the universe but it is still limited. But our knowledge of the universe as a whole is beyond our experience so we can only speculate

21

Hume: No proposition about existence can be logically necessary (i.e. analytic)?

Hume- all existential statements are synthetic not analytic. Aquinas' third way argues for a necessary being given the contingent nature of the universe.
Hume argues that God's existence is not logically necessary - 'necessary being' is only a concept (a belief) and lacks empirical proof.

22

Hume: 'necessary being' only refers to an 'imperishable being'?

We may just as easily conclude that matter and energy 'necessarily exists' rather than a 'necessary being' such as God

23

Kant's criticism?

1) human knowledge is limited to observation of the phenomenal world
- If God created the universe, then God must be outside of the universe (transcendent- outside time and space. Belongs to the noumenal realm
- God is beyond our experience
2) We cannot draw metaphysical conclusions e.g. necessary being (apodeitic certainty) based on physical observations
- God is a belief and goes beyond empirical proof