Bruce Reichenbach has formulated a fairly typical version of the. Thomist cosmological argument based on the principle of efficient causality.1 More recently. be advanced against my version of the cosmological argument, 2 two of which 2 Bruce R. Reichenbach, The Cosmological Argument: A Reassessment. Cosmological Argument. Bruce Reichenbach. The cosmological argument is less a particular argument than an argument type. It uses a general pattern of.

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The basis for the argument’s first premise is the Causal Principle that undergirds all cosmological arguments. Distributed by Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers.

For example, it appears that electrons can pass out of existence at one point and come back into existence elsewhere. The rise of quantum explanations suggests that the simplest account of the universe, for example, that of Newton, is not a complete and fully adequate account. In other words, it would not explain why there exists the universe that is reported by the members of p.

There would be a hidden contradiction buried in such co-assertions…. The future, but not the past, is a potential infinite, for its events have not yet happened. Why, then, does God exist? So while Craig xrgument that Cantor’s set theoretic definitions yield absurdities when applied to the world of concrete objects, set theorists see no problem so long as the definitions are maintained.

However, this argument is part of a larger, cumulative case for a P-inductive argument for God’s existence. The open possibilities are that q is comological a necessary proposition or a contingent proposition that reports the action of a necessary being.

Ragument the argument proceeds independent of temporal considerations, the argument does not necessarily propose a first cause in time, but rather a first or primary sustaining cause of the universe. Ontologically applying infinity to future events does not differ from applying it to past events.

Whereas behind premise 1 of the original argument lies the ancient Parmenidean contention that out of nothing nothing comes, it is alleged that no principle directly connects finitude with causation. The world is composed of temporal phenomena preceded by other temporally-ordered phenomena. The first, advocated by Aquinas, is based on the impossibility of an essentially ordered infinite regress. A self-explaining being satisfies PSR but not PC, since the explanation of its existence is not a causal one.


Pruss and Swinburne argue that the kind of explanation required by the PSR is a complete explanation.

The Causal Principle has been the subject of extended criticism. Some doubt whether we can ask this question because there being nothing is not an option. Regardless of the connection of a necessary being with religion, it is necessary to flesh out the nature of the necessary being if one is to hold that the cosmological argument is informative. When we incorporate these features, the simplicity disappears. For many critics, premise 5 holds the key to the argument’s success or failure.

A contingent proposition or being is both possibly true or existent and possibly false or nonexistent. Although in the ontological argument the perfect being is determined to exist through cowmological own concept, in fact nothing can be determined to exist in this manner; one has to begin with existence.

Once Aquinas concludes that necessary beings exist, he then goes on to ask whether these beings argukent their existence from themselves or from another. Matter has necessary existence, for though it undergoes change, the given volume of matter found in the universe persists, and as persisting matter does not have or need a cause. The former does not seem up to the task of explaining psince reichenbch mere existence of a necessary being, even if it were God, could not explain why all of the contingent propositions in p are true together.

Cosmological Argument (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

This is the ultimate given circumstance, which it is not possible to go with either question or explanation. Enlightenment thinkers, such as Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz and Samuel Clarke, reaffirmed the cosmological argument. An event takes place within a space-time context. The broader the scope, the less relevant this criterion becomes Hume, it seems, confuses epistemic with ontological conditions. And without a beginning the universe requires no cause. One has only to state this principle in order to defuse the unintelligibility-of-theistic-explanations objection that is based on it.


What has necessary existence is causally independent. Simply put, Hume argued that we can conceive of an uncaused event; and, since whatever is conceivable is possible in reality, PC is false. What is debated is whether this inability to predict is due to the absence of sufficient causal conditions, or whether it is merely a result of the fact that any attempt to precisely measure these events alters their status.

Explanation and the Cosmological Argument

If they are explained in terms of something else, the entire collection still remains unaccounted for. It makes probable the existence of the complex universe because God could have reasons for causing such a universe, whereas we would have no reasons at all if all we had was the brute fact of the material universe. Thus, Smith argues that Craig begs the question reihcenbach wrongly presuming that an intuitive relationship holds between finite sets bruec their proper subsets—that a set has more members than its proper subsets—must hold even in the case of infinite sets Smith, in Craig and Smith For Rundle, the past and the future are symmetrical; it is only our knowledge of them that is asymmetrical.

In the argument, steps 1—7 establish the existence of a necessary or non-contingent being; steps 8—9 attempt in some way to identify it. A ReassessmentCambridge: It is the universe that renders these propositions true, serving as their real-life verifiers.

Further, the cycle of collapses and expansions would not, as was pictured, be periodic of even duration.