Aquinas 5 Ways Argument Essay

3651 words - 15 pages

. Aquinas first argument is influenced by AristotleIn Aquinas' argument from change (to prove that god exists) is the belief that potentiality can only be moved by an actuality; only an actual motion can change a potential motion into an actual motion. He also goes to say that nothing can be actuality and potentiality at the same; therefore, nothing can move itself and that something in motion has to be moved by something else, and that motion cannot go on to infinity. As a result of this, there must be something, a first mover-a first cause of change-to be put in motion by nothing else and "everyone understands by god" (Melchert 277).Aquinas first argument is influenced by Aristotle's ...view middle of the document...

Aquinas' second argument is influenced by Aristotle because in Aristotle's way of thinking everything has a premise and what is to be proved is the conclusion, which he calls syllogism. There has to be a starting point and that nothing can start prior to the starting point. Therefore, there has to be a "proximate mover" or the answer that starts the beginning, and this is explained in Aristotle's third "because", which is the efficient cause that causes tend to be conditions, events, or happenings. Also, with Aristotle's argument beings/things do not go into infinity because the chains of events must come to an end if we have the knowledge.In both of these arguments, they agree that in order for something to happen there must be a cause or mover to let the chain of events roll. Nothing can exist before the cause because there will not be an effect; you can't have something come out of nothing and so it must first have to start and go to an end.3. Aquinas third argument is influenced by AristotleIn Aquinas' argument from possibility to necessity he says that things can come to be what they are and can cease being that thing again, and there are two stages to understanding this argument. One: not everything can have merely possible being, or nothing at all would exist because nothing comes from nothing; some beings simply must be. If nothing existed in the past then the world would exist in nothing now. Two: some necessary beings may come from another necessary being, and this too, cannot go on forever because if something is borrowed from another necessary being itself is eternal and necessary. Therefore some being exists of its own necessity, and does not receive its existence from another being, but rather causes them. And this being is "all men speak of as god" (Melchert 179)Aquinas gets this argument from the influence of Aristotle. According to Aristotle for something to exist it must come to end as well, which means it cannot go onto to infinity. I am alive, but not dead because it hasn't happened yet. But Aristotle uses his examples with substances as in the "form is the substance of things" (Melchert 177). He says all materials are made up of substances and that these substances all depend on something to exist like matter, compounds, ect. However, if something does not require form or matter than it can be pure form, which is the best thing of all because they cannot fail the perfection of their form for they have no dependency on the substance it is made of. Basically Aristotle's "pure form" is like that of Aquinas argument of existing on its own.4. Aquinas fourth argument is influenced by PlatoIn Aquinas' argument from grades of goodness in things some things are found to better than another thing. Aquinas claims that the very best being relies on its superlative, like fire is to make things hot; it's what its best at. He goes on to say that if there wasn't something superlative being then anything less would not exist. Since lower...

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