1. St. Peter's
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    02 Mar '11 16:161 edit
    Gaunilo attempted to refute the existance of God by arguing that the ontilogical argument in favor of a perfect God is faulty. His illustration was this: he said that if islands exist then there must be a perfect island, for if it did not then it would be possible to conceive of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived

    The flaw in his argument is subjectivity. How many palm trees would be a perfect number? What is the intrinsic value of a perfect number of trees? There is, then, no island than which no greater island can be conceived. The concept of the perfect island is incoherent; there can be no such thing.

    The concept of a perfect God is not incoherent. Power, knowledge, and the other qualities of God have maximal limits which cannot be surpassed. These qualities are not subjective or intrinsic.

    I hope this clears up any misconceptions you may be having about the effectiveness of your arguments
  2. Cape Town
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    02 Mar '11 18:16
    Originally posted by Doward
    The concept of a perfect God is not incoherent.
    Well then why didn't you simply say so as your first post in Agerg's thread?
    After all, he makes it quite clear in his OP that his assumption is:
    Some theists (I suspect many) hold that their formulation of "God" is the greatest conceivable being. Now If we suppose hypothetically, that such a god exists ....

    So you are actually supporting Agerg and even making it easier in that you also believe such a being can be shown to be illogical or incoherent whereas Agerg was merely trying to show that such a being is incompatible with the observed universe.
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    02 Mar '11 18:41
    Originally posted by Doward
    Gaunilo attempted to refute the existance of God by arguing that the ontilogical argument in favor of a perfect God is faulty. His illustration was this: he said that if islands exist then there must be a perfect island, for if it did not then it would be possible to conceive of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived

    The ...[text shortened]... pe this clears up any misconceptions you may be having about the effectiveness of your arguments
    I have 2 questions: Let us conceptualize a real object that necessarily exists, even though its existence is not logically implied or necessitated by anything else we say about it. Does this mean the object exists? After all, if we say no, we are obviously not talking about the object of our thought.

    If instead we say its existence is logically necessitated, but only by the implications of certain other things we say about it, does this mean it exists? After all...
  4. St. Peter's
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    02 Mar '11 20:201 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Well then why didn't you simply say so as your first post in Agerg's thread?
    After all, he makes it quite clear in his OP that his assumption is:
    Some theists (I suspect many) hold that their formulation of "God" is the greatest conceivable being. Now If we suppose hypothetically, that such a god exists ....

    So you are actually supportin ...[text shortened]... gerg was merely trying to show that such a being is incompatible with the observed universe.
    the argument is that subjective principles cannot be applied to the maximal God, I stand by this. his argument is flawed from the begining, like Gaunilo's
  5. Lowlands paradise
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    03 Mar '11 09:29
    Originally posted by Doward
    Gaunilo attempted to refute the existance of God by arguing that the ontilogical argument in favor of a perfect God is faulty. His illustration was this: he said that if islands exist then there must be a perfect island, for if it did not then it would be possible to conceive of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived

    The ...[text shortened]... pe this clears up any misconceptions you may be having about the effectiveness of your arguments
    An omnipotent god should be able to reproduce himself.
    But there can not be more than one omnipotent god

    I think Anselm's omnipotent god is as subjective as the perfect Island of Gaulino
  6. Standard memberAgerg
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    03 Mar '11 10:215 edits
    Originally posted by Doward
    Gaunilo attempted to refute the existance of God by arguing that the ontilogical argument in favor of a perfect God is faulty. His illustration was this: he said that if islands exist then there must be a perfect island, for if it did not then it would be possible to conceive of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived

    The ...[text shortened]... pe this clears up any misconceptions you may be having about the effectiveness of your arguments
    Gaunilo attempted to refute the existance of God by arguing that the ontilogical argument in favor of a perfect God is faulty. His illustration was this: he said that if islands exist then there must be a perfect island, for if it did not then it would be possible to conceive of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived
    It wouldn't surprise me if you find Anselm's proof persuasive but the first mistake you commit here is in thinking that Gaunilo was try to refute the existence of "God" with this argument when he was infact refuting that particular *proof(?)* of "God". The actual underlying logic of Anselm's argument is unsound and can readiliy be applied to other things.

    The flaw in his argument is subjectivity. How many palm trees would be a perfect number? What is the intrinsic value of a perfect number of trees? There is, then, no island than which no greater island can be conceived. The concept of the perfect island is incoherent; there can be no such thing.
    This same critique can be applied to your so-called "perfect" god; indeed as it is a recasting of a faulty argument so to reference some other object it does not surprise me in the least it can be challenged. To this end I ask, rhetorically, what is a perfect god? how many benevolent acts must it perform for humans to be perfectly benevolent?, what is the perfect number of miracles it should perform? what is the perfect number of islands it should create on this world it supposedly made? and so on... Your answers to these (no need to provide them - they were rhetorical questions) would be equally subjective.

    The concept of a perfect God is not incoherent. Power, knowledge, and the other qualities of God have maximal limits which cannot be surpassed. These qualities are not subjective or intrinsic.
    They are very much subjective in that they are properties you attach to some god (supposing hypothetically that it exists) in order to approximate it's nature within your own mind - a mind that has no reliable concept of the supernatural, and what constitutes perfection for supernatural things.

    Moreover, such human ideas about some supernatural entity are inconsistent with the world we live in.
  7. St. Peter's
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    04 Mar '11 11:22
    Originally posted by souverein
    An omnipotent god should be able to reproduce himself.
    But there can not be more than one omnipotent god

    I think Anselm's omnipotent god is as subjective as the perfect Island of Gaulino
    That would be a contradiction, an all powerful being cannot exist simultaneously with another all powerful being, otherwise neither would be all powerful
  8. St. Peter's
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    04 Mar '11 13:22
    Originally posted by Agerg
    [b]Gaunilo attempted to refute the existance of God by arguing that the ontilogical argument in favor of a perfect God is faulty. His illustration was this: he said that if islands exist then there must be a perfect island, for if it did not then it would be possible to conceive of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived ...[text shortened]... human ideas about some supernatural entity are inconsistent with the world we live in.[/b]
    The actual underlying logic of Anselm's argument is unsound and can readiliy be applied to other things.
    I don't think it so much unsound as it is incomplete. Descarte is far more thorough in his analysis. Though on the whole Ontilogical proofs are suspect, which is why I rejected your premis in the other thread. The proof is flawed, as well as the testing. They rely on fualty perceptions and not on true objectivity. "First Cause" is by the far the best rational existance for a god than any other.

    This same critique can be applied to your so-called "perfect" god; indeed as it is a recasting of a faulty argument so to reference some other object it does not surprise me in the least it can be challenged. To this end I ask, rhetorically, what is a perfect god? how many benevolent acts must it perform for humans to be perfectly benevolent?, what is the perfect number of miracles it should perform? what is the perfect number of islands it should create on this world it supposedly made? and so on... Your answers to these (no need to provide them - they were rhetorical questions) would be equally subjective.

    I think here you are agreeing with me (though you probably don't mean to). How can we know the maximal limits of a perfect being? It would take true objectivity which imperfect beings do not posess. The line of reasoning that suffering exists therefor God is not omnibenevolent does not rationally follow. One must first prove that suffering has no positive purpose (universally) and that cannot be done.

    They are very much subjective in that they are properties you attach to some god (supposing hypothetically that it exists) in order to approximate it's nature within your own mind - a mind that has no reliable concept of the supernatural, and what constitutes perfection for supernatural things.

    I disagree, as would most philosophers. Maximal limits would be a purely rational and reasoned point. Pure reason relies on perfect objectivity...not possible. As a concept or principle one must assume that god is perfectly rational if he/she is to be maximally anything. A perfectly rational being is incapable of immoral acts and is the ultimate legislator of the moral law. Beings that are not perfectly rational live under the command of this catagorical imperative. Therefor suffering is not the responsibility of the perfectly rational being but of the imperfect.

    Further, God, having perfect reason must uphold the imperative by not interfering with the autonomy of people. To interfere even in the slightest bit would be to rob them of their free will, and thusly their dignity.
  9. Lowlands paradise
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    04 Mar '11 18:021 edit
    Originally posted by Doward
    That would be a contradiction, an all powerful being cannot exist simultaneously with another all powerful being, otherwise neither would be all powerful
    Right! It proves that a separate being cannot be omnipotent. It leads to a myriad of paradoxes and will make your god rather powerless.
    You agree with me that a separate (monotheistic) god cannot reproduce himself. But that means he is less powerful than any living being here on earth.

    Only in a pantheistic universe you could escape that paradox and argue that god might be omnipotent.
  10. St. Peter's
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    04 Mar '11 18:531 edit
    Originally posted by souverein
    Right! It proves that a separate being cannot be omnipotent. It leads to a myriad of paradoxes and will make your god rather powerless.
    You agree with me that a separate (monotheistic) god cannot reproduce himself. But that means he is less powerful than any living being here on earth.

    Only in a pantheistic universe you could escape that paradox and argue that god might be omnipotent.
    mmmmmm...no. You make large assupmtions that are not apodeicticly true. A supreme being, all powerful and all knowing, would not seperate himself. The being of perfect reason would see that as a paradox and reunite with itself, or as omniscient would know that doing so would be a paradox and would not do so.

    Its a very illogical (ill thought out) road your taking, and not worth anymore of my time
  11. Standard memberAgerg
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    04 Mar '11 19:144 edits
    Originally posted by Doward
    [b]The actual underlying logic of Anselm's argument is unsound and can readiliy be applied to other things.
    I don't think it so much unsound as it is incomplete. Descarte is far more thorough in his analysis. Though on the whole Ontilogical proofs are suspect, which is why I rejected your premis in the other thread. The proof is flawed, as well as the t in the slightest bit would be to rob them of their free will, and thusly their dignity.[/b]
    I will address these points (which are heavily flawed/misdirected) with another theist if one wishes to take up the baton - A discussion between the two of us will not be productive.
  12. St. Peter's
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    04 Mar '11 19:17
    Originally posted by Agerg
    I will address these points (which are heavily flawed/misdirected) with another theist if one wishes to take up the baton - A discussion between the two of us will not be productive.
    as you wish, though its unlikely you will find anyone else as willing to engage.
  13. Lowlands paradise
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    04 Mar '11 20:43
    Originally posted by Doward
    mmmmmm...no. You make large assupmtions that are not apodeicticly true. A supreme being, all powerful and all knowing, [b]would not seperate himself. The being of perfect reason would see that as a paradox and reunite with itself, or as omniscient would know that doing so would be a paradox and would not do so.

    Its a very illogical (ill thought out) road your taking, and not worth anymore of my time[/b]
    Its a very illogical (ill thought out) road your taking, and not worth anymore of my time
    your choice
  14. Standard memberAgerg
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    04 Mar '11 21:215 edits
    Originally posted by souverein
    An omnipotent god should be able to reproduce himself.
    But there can not be more than one omnipotent god

    I think Anselm's omnipotent god is as subjective as the perfect Island of Gaulino
    An omnipotent god should be able to reproduce himself.
    But there can not be more than one omnipotent god

    On a purely philosophical level I'm not so sure about your contention there cannot be more than one omnipotent god (without other assumptions). Of course, if one takes

    "X is omnipotent" to mean that for all Y =/= X, Y is strictly less in potency than X.

    then I'd be forced, logically, to agree. But on the other hand if one takes

    "X is omnipotent" to mean that for all Y =/= X, Y is not strictly greater in potency than X

    then I can't see how multiple omnipotent gods is infeasible for the above allows for Y =/= X to be *as potent* as X. Moreover I can't see why one necessarily shouldn't take that second definition of omnipotence if we restrict the set of all actions capable of being performed by omnipotent things to those that are not logically impossible. One might of course argue there is no logical contradiction by asserting for X, Y omnipotent, X can obliterate Y (if Y allows this), and conversely Y can obliterate X (if X allows this) - and go further to say it would be not be logically impossible for Y to obliterate X (if X allows) and then reconstruct X (and vica versa). They may then ask what if both Y and X allow each other to obliterate, then reconstruct the other at the same time? I would say this is not so much a contradiction with multiple omnipotent beings, but the supposition these events can occur simultaneously (which is illogical). This is more of a thought experiment than any attempt to vindicate the feasibility of an omnipotent god/(s).
  15. Lowlands paradise
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    04 Mar '11 22:07
    Originally posted by Agerg
    [b]An omnipotent god should be able to reproduce himself.
    But there can not be more than one omnipotent god

    On a purely philosophical level I'm not so sure about your contention there cannot be more than one omnipotent god (without other assumptions). Of course, if one takes

    [i]"X is omnipotent" to mean that for all Y =/= X, Y is strictly less in pot ...[text shortened]... ught experiment than any attempt to vindicate the feasibility of an omnipotent god/(s).[/b]
    This is more than two pence 😉. This weekend I will chew on it and will try to answer you soon after. Meanwhile I am curious about the outcome of a chess game between X and Y, assuming X and Y both decide to win?
    Feel like playing a game?
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