St. Anselm 's Ontological Argument On The Existence Of God Is Sound

1232 Words Sep 2nd, 2016 5 Pages
“God” is defined as the greatest being in this argument. St. Anselm’s Ontological Argument on the existence of God is sound, but since ontological arguments are conceptual, one must approach soundness away from the classical guidelines. Anselm argues, “if that than which a greater cannot be thought exists only in the understanding, then that than which is greater cannot be thought is that than which a greater can be thought. Therefore, there is no doubt that something than which is a greater cannot be thought exists both in the understanding and in reality” (p139). He spends his argument refuting “the fool that said in his heart, ‘There is no God,’” (p139). This fool understands that God exists, but does not believe that He exists. Throughout the argument St. Anselm combats the unstable combination of understanding and belief by using the understanding or the mind as if it were some place where things exist because it is self-contradictory to deny that there exists a greatest being. Anselm begins his argument with premises not dependent on experience for justification and then argues that God exists. It is a conceptual truth that God is the greatest being imagined and exists as an idea in the mind. There is the understanding that something which nothing greater can be imagined. If it is in the understanding, then it can be thought in reality as well, which is greater. Therefore, both in the understanding and in reality something than which nothing greater can be conceived…

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