Cosmological Argument Essay, Research Paper
How Well Does the Cosmological Argument Hold Water? The Cosmological Argument is one of the most heavily disputed arguments for God’s existence of our time. The argument in its simplest form is: “Everything has to be caused by or created from something else . . . therefore there must be a first cause, namely God.” The very basis of the argument, everything is caused, is what makes it an argument. We will see later that the argument has faults and makes it difficult to interpret. St. Thomas Aquinas is one of the most famous proponents for the argument, and he discusses the topic in his Summa Theologica. St. Thomas Aquinas introduced his “Five Ways” that argue for God’s existence. These proofs are still widely used in approaches to Christianity today. The Cosmological Argument is one of St. Thomas’ “Five Ways.” Aquinas explains that there is a discreet order of efficient causes, and there is no case known where something is an efficient cause of itself. In this case, the object, or being, would have preceded itself. What do we mean by a cause? First, a cause precedes its effect. Second, since the two are in contact temporarily and spatially, the two are related in someway. Now, a first cause is the cause that begins the cycle of cause-effect. Since the first cause relates to the ultimate cause, a first cause must exist. For if it did not, then there would be no ultimate cause, which is obviously invalid. St. Thomas then argues that it is necessary to have a first cause, which we call God. Many people argue that, after God created the universe, he ceased to interfere with it. Aquinas responds to this with the idea that God did in fact create the universe, and he is responsible for its existence from one moment to the next. On the other hand, many argue that the universe has always existed, and there is no such first cause. This is where the argument introduces the idea of infinity.According to common natural law, the universe must have spawn from something. One may contradict this idea with the view that there were an infinite number of causes. There are two possible ways of looking at infinity. One is the mathematical form, or actual infinity. In this case, infinity is considered to be a set of objects, always constant. For example, if I were to type an infinite number of words on an infinite number of pages, the number of words to pages would be equal. This does not sound possible, does it. Philosopher William Lane Craig writes, “an actual infinite cannot exist in the real world of stars and planets and rocks and men”. Therefore, we have to rely on the other definition of infinity, potential. In this sense, the set can be added to, and the set of objects would be finite. In this sense, the idea of infinite causes is refuted. Therefore, there is a first cause because the set of causal effects is finite. This cause is explained through the being of God.
According to the argument so far, since everything exists, a first cause, or necessary being, exists. This being depends on its contingents, for it would not exist. A necessary being is a being that is necessary for the existence of everything, and if it did not exist, you would not be reading this right now. Since God is a necessary being, it implies that he has always existed. In addition, the Cosmological Argument states that he in fact does exist; therefore, he is also eternal. God was never created, nor will he ever be destroyed.This argument has been well thought out and discussed. There is a huge gap in it, though. I cannot comprehend how something did not cause God. Aquinas, himself, states that everything is caused into existence. Even if one argues that God is eternal, this can be confused with infinite, and they have already established that even infinity is a finite number. He cannot be an eternal being, and thus he must have a beginning himself. This is what I meant in the beginning. The central idea of the Cosmological Argument is a paradox in itself. Therefore, this argument does not hold much weight in proving the existence of God.