The Existence of God: Descartes, Taylor, and Paley
The existence of God is a question that has puzzled and confused people for centuries. It is a question that many people submit to and many argue against. There are many different theories on the existence of God, all with different evidence and reasoning. In this paper, I will discuss three of these theories; the theory of Rene Descartes, the theory of Richard Taylor, and the theory of William Paley. I will go over the main points of each theory and try to reach a conclusion on which one is more believable.
2. The Theory of Rene Descartes
Rene Descartes was a French philosopher who lived in the 1600s. He is most famous for his saying “Cogito, ergo sum” or “I think, therefore I am.” He believed that this was the only thing that could be known for certain. Everything else could be doubted. He thought that the only way to know if something was true was if he could conceive it clearly and distinctly in his mind. If he couldn’t, then it must be false.
Descartes believed that God existed because he couldn’t conceive of Him not existing. He thought that if God didn’t exist, then everything would be chaos and there would be no order in the universe. He also thought that since he was imperfect, he must have been created by a perfect being (God).
The main problem with Descartes’ theory is that it is based on his own opinions and beliefs. Just because he can’t conceive of something doesn’t mean it isn’t true. For example, he couldn’t conceive of a world without gravity, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. His theory also doesn’t address the problem of evil. If God is all-powerful and all-good, then why does evil exist in the world?
3. The Theory of Richard Taylor
Richard Taylor was an American philosopher who lived in the 20th century. He believed that the existence of God could be proved by what he called the “cosmological argument.” This argument says that everything in the universe has a cause, and that cause must have had a cause, and so on. Eventually, you would reach a First Cause (God) who didn’t have a cause because He created everything else.
Taylor also believed in what is called the “ontological argument.” This argument says that since we can conceive of a perfect being (God), He must exist because otherwise He wouldn’t be perfect.
The main problem with Taylor’s theories is that they are both based on our own opinions and beliefs about what is possible or impossible. Just because we can conceive of something doesn’t mean it exists, and just because something has a cause doesn’t mean there must be a First Cause (God).
4. The Theory of William Paley
William Paley was an English philosopher who lived in the 18th century. He is best known for his analogy of the watchmaker. He said that if you found a watch on the ground, you would know that it had been made by someone because it is too complicated to have just happened by chance. In the same way, he said, the universe is too complicated to have just happened by chance; it must have been created by God.
Paley also believed in the “design argument.” This argument says that since the universe is so ordered and complex, it must have been designed by a superior being (God).
The main problem with Paley’s theories is that they are both based on the idea that something cannot come from nothing. But this is not necessarily true. We don’t know everything about the universe, so it is possible that it could have come from nothing.
In conclusion, I believe that the theory of Rene Descartes is the most believable of the three theories discussed in this paper. Even though it is based on his own opinions and beliefs, I think that his reasoning is the strongest out of the three. However, I still don’t think that any of these theories can truly prove the existence of God beyond a reasonable doubt.