Presentation on theme: "Phil 1000 Bradley Monton Class 3 The Argument From Design."— Presentation transcript:
Phil 1000 Bradley Monton Class 3 The Argument From Design
First, the Cosmological Argument One version: Premise 1: The universe began to exist. Premise 2: Everything that begins to exist has a cause of its existence. Conclusion: The universe had a cause of its existence. Further step: this cause is God.
A Different Cosmological Argument Premise 1: Whatever is caused to exist is caused to exist by something else. Premise 2: It’s impossible to have an infinite regress of (non-temporal) causes resulting in the existence of something. Conclusion: There must have been a first cause.
A Third Cosmological Argument Leibniz -- the Principle of Sufficient Reason: there has to be a sufficient reason for everything that occurs. Even if the universe has been in existence forever, and even if there is an infinite regress of causes, nevertheless there must be a sufficient reason for the universe to exist, and that chain of causes to exist. That sufficient reason is God.
This leads to a question: what is the sufficient reason for God’s existence? Maybe the answer is: God necessarily exists. A further question: is the principle of sufficient reason true?
Rowe’s counterargument: Rowe says that contingent facts can’t be explained by a necessary fact. Therefore, an appeal to God can’t explain why the universe is this (contingent) way, and not some other way. But is the will of God a sufficient reason?
The Argument from Design Also called: the teleological argument. Paley’s version (given in 1800): If you found a watch in a heath, you would assume it had a designer. But the human eye is even more sophisticated -- we should assume that it had a designer too.
The “Beautiful Universe” version of the Argument from Design Premise 1: The fundamental laws of physics are beautiful -- they are simple yet elegant. Premise 2: If God doesn’t exist, this would be improbable. Premise 3: If God does exist, this would be expected. Conclusion: The fact that the laws are beautiful provides evidence for the existence of God.
The “Fine-Tuning” version of the Argument from Design Premise 1: Some of the values of the fundamental constants are fine-tuned for life. It follows that, if God doesn’t exist, it’s improbable that the values of the constants are life-permitting. Premise 2: If God does exist, it’s expected that the values of the constants are life-permitting. Conclusion: The fact that the values of the constants are life-permitting provides evidence for the existence of God.
The Many Universes Reply to the Fine-Tuning Argument Maybe there are many universes in existence, in addition to our own, and different universes have different values of the fundamental constants. Then, even if God doesn’t exist, it’s not surprising that we find ourselves in a universe where the values of the constants are life-permitting.