The Instigator
Installgentoo
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
distraff
Con (against)
Winning
20 Points

By definition, God must exist

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
distraff
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/27/2014 Category: Religion
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,009 times Debate No: 59621
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (17)
Votes (5)

 

Installgentoo

Pro

I will be arguing that God, defined as a being who is all-powerful, all-knowing, and morally perfect in all logically possible worlds, must exist by definition.

First round is acceptance.
distraff

Con

I accept this debate.
Debate Round No. 1
Installgentoo

Pro

The argument that God as defined in the OP must exist goes like so;

1) God is a maximally great being (he has all the great-making properties possible for a being).
2) It is better for a being to be necessarily existent than to not exist
C. Therefore God necessarily exists.

This argument was proven by Anselm. [1]

Footnotes

[1] https://www.youtube.com...
distraff

Con

God is a maximally great being (he has all the great-making properties possible for a being).

Since you are doing a proofsay :
I propose a being God, who is a maximally great being (he has all the great-making properties possible for a being)

It is better for a being to be necessarily existent than to not exist

This argument makes no sense.

Therefore God necessarily exists.

The conclusion does not follow from the premises.

I know you have a little support in your youtube video but you really need to make consistent argument the post itself.
Debate Round No. 2
Installgentoo

Pro

Okay, I would like to correct my second premise as "it is greater for a being to necessarily exist than to not exist".

This is shown in the YouTube video and also more generally in other works dealing with the ontological argument.

Alright, now the conclusion follows.
distraff

Con

My opponent gave a poorly worded argument in the second round and only introduced his real argument in the last round so I am forced to do the same. If he wants to do a more thorough argument, he can provide his rebuttals in the comments, or start a new debate.

1) God is a maximally great being (he has all the great-making properties possible for a being).
2) It is greater for a being to be necessarily existent than to not exist
C. Therefore God necessarily exists.


In the first premise God is greatest in the world of ideas since he has not been shown to exist yet. The second premise said that this God in the world of ideas is greatest if he exists in real life. So since God is greatest in the world of ideas, and to be greatest in the world of ideas, you have to exist in real life, God exists in real life.

Note that the first premise is only proposing an idea of God as the greatest being possible when it defines him as maximally great instead of defining him as the greatest imaginable being . This is because if God is defined as great in every imaginable way, logical contradictions start developing. God could make 1+2=3. He could make a stone he cannot lift. He could get rid of evil without any negative consequences whatsoever like violating free will. He could make a universe that does not need him to exist, a logical contradiction.

So philosophers realized that some things are impossible for anyone to do even God. So if we define him as omnipotent but only in the way that he can do all things, and things are actions that are real, then God can do all things that can be done.

So lets try to define some actions. Lets try to define actions A, B, C, D, E. A, B, C, D are things that can be done and E cannot. Does this mean we can define a being who can do A, B, C, and D? Possible actions rely on a definition of an actor. Actions are only possible if they have the right actor. In this example, A, B can be done by a giant body with a lot of mass and heat, and C and D can be done by something with a mind. Since we have no proof that it is possible for something with a lot of mass and heat (like a star) to also have a mind it is possible, that you can only do A, B or C, D but not both.

So it is not valid to assume that just because individual actions can be done by something, this something can be consistent for all these actions. My conclusion is that we have no evidence that a maximally great being, that can do all possible actions is even possible. There may only be a set beings that together can do all possible actions. Given the possibility that the first premise possibly defines a logical contradiction, you cannot assume his existence by trying an add the ability of existing to a logical contradiction.

Second refutation

This argument tried to define an idea of God in the first premise since his existence is not yet proven at that point. He must exist in the world of ideas in the first premise or else we are just assuming he exists which is illogical. How can a God in the world of ideas have traits in real life? Is it even possible to add traits in real life to an object in the world of ideas? Sure, we can add abilities in real life to this idea, but these are only ideas of actual abilities. So we can only add the idea of actual existence to God, or the idea of building planets, but we cannot add the actual ability of existing or actually building planets to an idea.

Another problem is that with this argument, I can propose the existence of many maximally great being. I can begin the same argument but then say:

1) Two Gods are maximally great beings.
2) It is greater for them to be necessarily existent than to not exist
C. Therefore both Gods necessarily exists.

Or

1) Define a maximally great pig (Imagine a maximally great being while still being a pig).
2) It is greater for a being to be necessarily existent than to not exist
C. Therefore the Great Pig necessarily exists.
Debate Round No. 3
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by distraff 3 years ago
distraff
I get who you believe the way you do. Its sounds like you only believe the ontological argument because you already believe in God. So what use is this argument? By the way is part of the reason you believe is because you believe that miracles are happening today?
Posted by WileyC1949 3 years ago
WileyC1949
distraff: You point is well made, but this is where belief takes over. We BELIEVE that the Supreme Being is the omnipotent, omnipresent, omnibenevolent, omniscient, eternal creator of the universe. Is there a possibility that a being does not exist who has all these attributes? Of course. It is also POSSIBLE for the Supreme or Greatest Being inside or outside of the universe is Fred, the guy who picks up my recycling on Thursday mornings who has no special attributes whatsoever. However by examination of the universe, what we understand of science, the beyond the natural events which have been witnessed by thousands upon thousands even in the present day, the fulfilled prophesies in books that we called "Sacred" we believe the Supreme Being to have all of those attributes.
Posted by distraff 3 years ago
distraff
install,
An object can be maximally great. Maximally great just means as great as possible for that thing. The maximally great broom is the broom that is the best broom possible. This definition seems consistent.
Posted by distraff 3 years ago
distraff
Wiley, your argument is interesting and is more sound than Anselm's position and I agree that there must be a tallest building, or a fastest being. You then say that there must be a greatest being? Unlike the last ests there is no precise definition of great.

Its like saying that there is a tastiest food. Different food is tasty in their own different ways and for different people different things are tasty. For example maybe the greatest being is the one with the most power. I could say it is a black hole. Others might say it is the most intelligent being. Then it would be George W. Bush.
Posted by WileyC1949 3 years ago
WileyC1949
LaidBack: I am not sure if you comment was meant as a reply to me or not. It certainly does not apply to what I was saying. As I stated I am NOT taking Anselm's position of "greatest that can be imagined" but rather am speaking about the greatest that IS. You "perfect island" would be a response only to Anselm. I am saying that of all the beings which do exist inside the universe or outside of it, whether they be physical or non-corporal, there can be only one whom is the "greatest". And just as the tallest building in the world MUST exist so too must the "greatest" or the "Supreme" Being.
Posted by enderpigdebates 3 years ago
enderpigdebates
this may be a little confusing, but I'm going to throw some science into this.

If there is a being in the form of god, then he may possibly be

A) an alien
or
B) a differently adapted human, living in a outside universe/ outside the universe
Posted by LaidBackLogic 3 years ago
LaidBackLogic
Gaunilo of Marmoutiers and the perfect island. Enough said.
Posted by WileyC1949 3 years ago
WileyC1949
Sorry... I posted before I completed my response.

Please note that I am not arguing from the Anselm point of view of "greatest that can be imagined" but rather the practical..... of all the beings which DO exist inside or OUTSIDE of our universe whether they be physical beings or non corporeal one and only one can be the "greatest" and that greatest being MUST exist.

Our understanding of God has evolved in the same way that our understand of science has. But whereas knowledge of science, because it deals with the physical universe only, can be expanded by tests and experiments, knowledge of the supernatural can only be obtained IF and only if the supernatural reveals itself to us. When it does so logic and reasoning must be applied to determine the meaning of such a revelation. Our understanding of it can and does change overtime.

The the people of ancient times have a primitive concept of God. Yes, of course. They also had a primitive concept of science. What most people miss about the Bible, especially when they concentrate on the literal trivia, is the fact that it is the story of one people's GROWTH in faith and understanding of God. It begins with a primitive concept but over time that concept grows from the concept of a being of power and might who is to be feared to a being who IS love. This growth can be seen clearer if you read the books in the order in which they were written rather than the order which they are included in the Bible.
Posted by WileyC1949 3 years ago
WileyC1949
As I explained. There can be only ONE "est", and there MUST be an "est", whether that est is the fastEST, slowEST, tallEST. There is only one tallest building in the world and there must be a tallest building in the world. The exact same thing holds true for the universe... there is one and only one largest planet in the universe, even if we do not know what that planet is. And logically there must be a largest planet. There can be one and only one greatest being within the universe, and that greatest being must exist. There can be one and only one greatest or SUPREME Being in or out of the universe and that being MUST exist.

You may argue that this being does not have the abilities or powers which people believe Him to have, but that a Supreme Being exists is beyond question.
Posted by GeminiContractor 3 years ago
GeminiContractor
@WileyC1949
"By definition a SUPREME Being must exist. Of all the beings which do exist within the universe or outside of it there MUST be one and only one who is the "greatest" or the "Supreme Being". That tells us nothing about that being other than His existence, and we can only learn about Him if and only if He has decided to reveal information about Himself to us. We believe He has done that and thus we believe this being to be the Creator who is omnipresent, omnipotent, omnibenevolent."

Why is it that this "SUPREME Being" must exist?
It is absurd to believe that something exists just because you can imagine no thing nor being greater.

Even if it does exist, going by the fact that it would have infinite power, knowledge, presence and benevolence, there is no way that it is the Abrahamic God, or any of the other gods in the religions of the earth's people, as most of those gods are usually incompetent and primitive in their dealings.
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 3 years ago
9spaceking
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Reasons for voting decision: pro does not really effectively uphold his part of the resolution
Vote Placed by Ragnar 3 years ago
Ragnar
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Reasons for voting decision: "proven by Anselm" is not proven by pro. While a video can support his arguments, a link to a video cannot be his arguments. Con disassembled the argument, and found the faulty cause within.
Vote Placed by KhalifV 3 years ago
KhalifV
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Reasons for voting decision: It was a bad argument 1000 years ago, it's bad now.
Vote Placed by FuzzyCatPotato 3 years ago
FuzzyCatPotato
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Reasons for voting decision: Ontological argument bad.
Vote Placed by patrick967 3 years ago
patrick967
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro provided a Youtube video as the basis for his three-sentence-arguments in the second and third rounds. Con provided full rebuttals and arguments.