Design versus the Epicurean Hypothesis: Two …

You cannot hold a belief in god based upon reason. It can only be based upon faith, since we do not know God and have no knowledge of him. You have to start from what you know and then treat everything else as a hypothesis

This argument, if proved to be true, would refute the Cosmological Argument for God’s Existence.

During the 17th and early 18th centuries Britishphilosophy gave rise to two powerful but conflicting philosophicaloutlooks. On one hand, this era has been described as “thegolden period of English theology” (Stephen 1962, 66) because ofthe deepening alliance between philosophy and theology. It was, inparticular, a major concern of a number of divines at this time toshow that basic Christian theology could be provided with a rationaldefence — one that would ward off all threat of scepticism andatheism. Among the leading representatives of this tradition wereHenry More, Ralph Cudworth, , , and Joseph Butler. (More andCudworth were both .) On the other hand, in opposition to this Christian tradition, thereexisted a sceptical tradition of which the greatest representative was . Closely aligned with Hobbes was the work of Benedict Spinoza, whoseTheological-Political Treatise (1670) and Ethics(1677) pursued a number of perceived Hobbesean themes in a moreexplicit and radical fashion, including anti-clericalism, biblicalcriticism, scepticism about miracles, materialism and necessitarianism(see Israel 2001). Almost all the defenders of basic Christiantheology during this period had their arguments targeted against the“atheistic” doctrines of Hobbes and Spinoza.


The philosophical criticisms of the design argument

Philo’s sceptical challenge is met by Cleanthes, who has therole in the Dialogues of presenting and defending theargument from design.

Hegel was not aggressive, he was superior. His French contemporary, Comte, who also thought out a comprehensive system, aggressively and explicitly rejected theology as an obsolete way of explaining the universe. He rejected metaphysics likewise, and all that Hegel stood for, as equally useless, on the ground that metaphysicians explain nothing, but merely describe phenomena in abstract terms, and that questions about the origin of the world and why it exists are quite beyond the reach of reason. Both theology and metaphysics are superseded by science—the investigation of causes and effects and coexistences; and the future progress of society will be guided by the scientific view of the world which confines itself to the positive data of experience. Comte was convinced that religion is a social necessity, and, to supply the place of the theological religions which he pronounced to be doomed, he invented a new religion—the religion of Humanity. It differs from the great religions of the world in having no supernatural or non-rational articles of belief, and on that account he had few adherents. But the “Positive Philosophy” of Comte has exercised great influence, not least in England, where its principles have been promulgated especially by Mr. Frederic Harrison, who in the latter half of the nineteenth century has been one of the most indefatigable workers in the cause of reason against authority.


1 Corinthians 15:32 Commentaries: If from human …

But we are justified only under one condition. The facts which we can safely accept must be capable of demonstration or verification. The examples I have given belong to this class. The boy can verify when he goes to France or is able to read a French book that the facts which he took on authority are true. I am confronted every day with evidence which proves to me that, if I took the trouble, I could verify the existence of Calcutta for myself. I cannot convince myself in this way of the existence of Napoleon, but if I have doubts about it, a simple process of reasoning shows me that there are hosts of facts which are incompatible with his non-existence. I have no doubt that the earth is some 93 millions of miles distant from the sun, because all astronomers agree that it has been demonstrated, and their agreement is only explicable on the supposition that this has been demonstrated and that, if I took the trouble to work out the calculation, I should reach the same result.

Design Argument Overview for Revision - World Faiths

The Cosmological Argument states that not every being can be a dependent being without infinite regress (which is believed to be impossible), so there exists a tri-omni self dependent being known as God which initiated the dependency of the universe....