The Ontological Argument

There are various systems and arguments for proving God’s existence; created by a plethora of theologists, psychologists, and philosophers, but I will be focusing on one: The Ontological Argument for God’s existence. The basic structure for the Ontological argument is set up as a reductio ad absurdum argument, which is essentially an argument which derives a solution by presenting the opposition to the desired solution, then formulating that it is absurd, or illogical, then in turn proves the desired outcome is the solution. The Ontological argument was first set forth by St. Anselm in the eleventh century(cite). The Ontological argument for the proof of God’s existence is the only argument which provides factual support towards understanding …show more content…
Anselm’s version(cite). St. Anselm created an argument which provides steps toward proving God’s existence. Anselm believes these steps prove that God’s existence is certain and only a fool would doubt his argument or deny it. St. Anselm’s Ontological structure for the argument of God’s proof is explained in several steps reducing towards the desired solution. The first step must start with a supposition. This supposition is: Suppose that the greatest conceivable being (GCB or God) exists in the mind alone, and not in reality. The second step leads to the first assumption: Existence in reality is greater than existence in the mind alone. This is where Anselm starts the deduction that if you can imagine God, then if God is supposedly the greatest conceivable idea imaginable. God existing in reality is even greater than mind alone. The third step is the second assumption: We can conceive of a God in reality as well as the mind. The fourth step is: There is a being that is greater than the greatest conceivable being, which is contradictory to what is said in the first 3 steps, because the first 3 steps deduce down to the realization that God is the greatest possible being imaginable, so a being that exists in reality and in the mind, must be true because that would be even greater than in the mind alone. Therefore, the final step …show more content…
Anselm is quick to respond to Gaunilo because St. Anselm believes that his system for the Ontological argument for God’s existence is undeniable. Anselm’s rejoinder is to be explained toward the conclusion that some ideas have intrinsic maximums and some which do not. God is an all-knowing, all-loving, divine being which allows him to have the greatest maximum of any conceivable being, therefore there can be nothing that can be thought of that is any amount greater than God. Gaunilo’s island on the other hand does not have intrinsic maximum properties. Anything which can be great, that is already in a tangible form, can be conceived as infinitely greater, such as numbers. If this island is told to be a certain width across; another person can imagine it as double that size. It can continually become greater, so there is no stopping point for the island’s greatness. These intrinsic maximum properties, God is described by, is what separates Anselm’s argument from Gaunilo’s criticism. The response by Anselm is fluent, but not perfect. His response accesses and provides a response to the point of Gaunilo’s criticism which attacks his system’s reduction process. Gaunilo lashed out at how Anselm concluded that God’s excellence is indisputable when he said, “For he ought to show first that the hypothetical excellence of this island exists as a real and undisputable fact...” (cite) When Gaunilo speaks of the island as if it were God, he leaves out the thoughts of these

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