Jason Dulle

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Can God's Existence be Logically Necessary?
« Reply #15 on: November 13, 2009, 03:48:09 pm »
I can't say I quite understand your response either, so we're even.

What I was talking about is the complaints I have heard defenders of the OA make against Anselm's version of it, namely, that he equivocates between the concept of a greatest conceivable being and an actual greatest conceivable being.  He makes the assumption that just because the concept exists in one's mind that therefore it exists in reality.  But that does not follow.  WLC's version of the OA, for example, avoids this difficulty because it doesn't begin with the concept of a greatest conceivable being, but rather the modal possibility of the real (as opposed to mental) existence of such a being.

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Randy Everist

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Can God's Existence be Logically Necessary?
« Reply #16 on: November 13, 2009, 03:51:10 pm »

jasondulle wrote: I can't say I quite understand your response either, so we're even.

What I was talking about is the complaints I have heard defenders of the OA make against Anselm's version of it, namely, that he equivocates between the concept of a greatest conceivable being and an actual greatest conceivable being.  He makes the assumption that just because the concept exists in one's mind that therefore it exists in reality.  But that does not follow.  WLC's version of the OA, for example, avoids this difficulty because it doesn't begin with the concept of a greatest conceivable being, but rather the modal possibility of the real (as opposed to mental) existence of such a being.

Yes, it seemed Anselm's only suffered from the idea that if it can be thought to exist, it does (at least it was the basis), whereas modal logic and possible world semantics have clarified. I wouldn't say Anselm was way off base; in fact, I'd say he was ahead of his time. His argument needed tweaking; a reason conceptualization should result in reality. The modal logic gave the needed clarification.

"Every great man was thought to be insane before he changed the world. Some never changed the world. They were just insane."

Check out my blog, "Possible Worlds," at http://www.randyeverist.com

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Jason Dulle

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Can God's Existence be Logically Necessary?
« Reply #17 on: November 13, 2009, 03:52:45 pm »
To anyone interested, I've started another thread with a question similar to the one I posed here: "Could the Universe be Metaphysically Necessary?".  Drawing on a rebuttal to the Leibnizian Cosmological Argument, I ask why the universe could not be metaphysically necessary, if indeed, it need not be immediately self-evident that something is metaphysically necessary for it to in fact be metaphysically necessary.