An analysis of ontological argument

Premise For any understandable being x, and for any worlds w and v, if x exists in w, but x does not exist in v, then the greatness of x in w exceeds the greatness of x in v.

But we cannot imagine something that is greater than God. But, at any rate, this very fool, when he hears of this being of which I speak - a being than which nothing greater can be conceived - understands what he hears, and what he understands is An analysis of ontological argument his understanding; although he does not understand it to exist.

Ontological argument

Hence, a being than which no greater can be conceived exists. In the example given earlier, the premises licence the claim that, as a matter of definition, God possesses the perfection of existence.

Hence, the existent perfect being is existent. A Neoclassical Theistic Response, Cambridge: Therefore, if humans cannot fully conceive of God, the ontological argument cannot work.

But the arguments themselves say nothing about the reasonableness of accepting the premisses. A significant proportion of papers in this collection take up technical questions about logics that support ontological derivations. How are we so much as to understand the claim that even the Fool believes that that than which no greater can be conceived exists in the understanding?

This fool has two important features. See MalcolmHartshorneand Plantinga for closely related arguments. Finally, he stated that it may be inconceivable for a non-existent being to create anything at all.

God is a being which has every perfection. Then we derive a contradiction or an absurdity from this supposition. Thus even the fool is convinced that something than which nothing greater can be conceived is in the understanding, since when he hears this, he understands it; and whatever is understood is in the understanding.

Trying to support most of these claims merely in order to beat up on ontological arguments is like using a steamroller to crack a nut in circumstances in which one is unsure that one can get the steamroller to move!

However, the basic point remains: Gasking uses this logic to assume that non-existence must be a disability. Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, Plantinga himself agrees: From 1 - 3.

Ontological Arguments

Hence Even the Fool cannot reasonably deny that that than which no greater can be conceived exists in reality Hence That than which no greater can be conceived exists in reality. In Chapter 3, Anselm presented a further argument in the same vein: Here is a modest attempt to provide such an analysis: Second, the Meinongian interpretations of BarnesAdams and Oppenheimer and Zalta produce arguments which, given the principles involved, could easily be much simplified, and which are obviously vulnerable to Gaunilo-type objections.

For no one who denies or doubts the existence of a being a greater than which is inconceivable, denies or doubts that if it did exist its nonexistence, either in reality or in the understanding, would be impossible.The ontological argument is an argument for God’s existence based entirely on reason.

According to this argument, there is no need to go out looking for physical evidence of God’s existence; we can work out that he exists just by thinking about it.

The Ontological argument is an a priori deductive argument. That is, an argument relating to being, that is independent of prior knowledge of the subject and with a conclusion you must accept IF one accepts the preceding premises.

In order to be able to determine whether Anselm’s argument is in fact sound and valid it must be compared to other ontological arguments and of course compared to counter arguments.

A deep understanding of Anselm’s Proslogion II is needed in order to. The ontological argument in Anselm’s Proslogion II continues to generate a remarkable store of sophisticated commentary and criticism. However, in our opinion, much of this literature ignores or misrepresents the elegant simplicity of the original argument.

Note that this characterisation does not beg the question against the possibility of the construction of a successful ontological argument—i.e., it does not lead immediately to the conclusion that all ontological arguments are question-begging (in virtue of the ontologically committing vocabulary which they employ).

Roxx Alvarado Professor Aaron Wilson PHI 8 September Analysis to Anselm’s Ontological Argument and the Argument from Evil The debate of the existence of God had been active since before the first philosopher has pondered the question.

An analysis of ontological argument
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