Anselm of Canterbury was an insanely devious motherfucker who chilled out in the 11th century. His proof of God was so badass that no one could figure out a good answer to it for hundreds of years.
Here’s how he would get you with it:
Anselm: Oh, hey there, Mr. Atheist — quick question for you — do you accept that if there is a God that our understanding of Him is as a being who is so fucking awesome that it would be impossible to imagine something more awesome?
You: Sure, OK, whatever, but I still don’t think that being actually exists.
Anselm: Yeah, but your idea of it exists in your mind, doesn’t it?
You: Yeeeeeeah, so what?
Anselm: Well, I was just thinking that something that exists in reality is even better than some dumb thing that only exists in your mind. Right?
You: Duh, yes, obvs. Where are you going with this, Anselm?
Anselm: Where I am going with this is that if God exists in your mind, which you ALREADY ADMITTED THAT HE DOES, then we can imagine something that’s even better than that — a God that exists in reality.
Anselm: Remember how we started off by agreeing that we can’t imagine something better than God?
Anselm: Yeah. You just got owned. QED, bitch.
Thomas Aquinas was so good at proving God that he did it five times. He would essentially just sit around taking massive bong rips* and coming up with proofs of God that totally blew everyone’s miiiiiiiinds.
Like, for instance, he would be all:
1. Yo, have you ever you noticed that the hotter something gets, the closer it gets to being, like, the hottest thing in the world?
2. And don’t you think that’s kind of true of, like, everything? Like, the more intense that something gets, the closer it gets to being, like, the most totally intense version of that thing?
3. But anyway, so that made me think that there’s gotta be something that has all the properties to the max. You know? And then I was like, oh, shit, I just proved God again.
3. Aquinas, Back For Round Two
When Aquinas wasn’t high as a fucking kite on the finest Humboldt County weed, he liked to sit around adapting some Ancient Greek knowledge bombs into airtight proofs of his number-one dude, the big man in the sky. One of his chart-topping hits in this genre was the Cosmological Argument, and it went a little bit like this:
1. True fact: Everything that isn’t infinite has a cause.
2. True fact numero dos: None of those things can cause themselves, because that would be stupid.
3. One more true-ass fact for y’all, just ‘cuz I’m feeling generous: A causal chain can’t be of infinite length.
4. Where does that leave us? Glad you asked. It leaves us with some irrefutable-ass knowledge that there has to be a first cause of everything. This may surprise you, but I’m going to go ahead and call that first cause G to the O to the motherfucking D. Boom.
Immanuel Kant’s whole thing was that he would go around critiquing everything like he was so much better than the rest of us, but when he wasn’t nitpicking and being a backseat driver, he could occasionally make himself pretty useful in the God-proving department.
In his Critique of Practical Reason, which is essentially just him shitting all over practical reason just because he felt like it, he took a little time out to prove everybody’s favorite deity using a little old thing called the Moral Argument. It went like this:
1. You know what’s awesome? It’s awesome when people are both morally virtuous and happy. Actually, that is so awesome that it is literally the most awesome thing that can happen.
2. You know what else I’ve noticed? Pretty much everybody who’s not, like, totally nuts feels rationally compelled to try to be good and happy in their lives.
3. And you can’t be compelled by reason to do something that’s impossible, is all I’m saying.
4. Yeah, and just one more thing: If there is no God or afterlife, it’s not possible to attain the highest good. Which means that there are those things. BOOM.
5. C.S. Lewis
When C.S. Lewis had a little bit of spare time from coming up with crazy shit about talking lions in parallel dimensions, he would occasionally bang out a wicked-smart proof of God or two just for fun. His Argument From Reason is straight up nasty. This is it, in his own words:
“Supposing there was no intelligence behind the universe, no creative mind. In that case, nobody designed my brain for the purpose of thinking. It is merely that when the atoms inside my skull happen, for physical or chemical reasons, to arrange themselves in a certain way, this gives me, as a by-product, the sensation I call thought. But, if so, how can I trust my own thinking to be true? It’s like upsetting a milk jug and hoping that the way it splashes itself will give you a map of London. But if I can’t trust my own thinking, of course I can’t trust the arguments leading to Atheism, and therefore have no reason to be an Atheist, or anything else. Unless I believe in God, I cannot believe in thought: so I can never use thought to disbelieve in God.”
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I don’t get why some people are up in arms about this. He’s basically just summarizing famous ontological arguments in an amusing and understandable way. It’s all stuff you should cover in an intro to philosophy class. I mean, if you were an undergrad trying to slog through these arguments, I would imagine you’d be surfing the internet looking for something JUST LIKE THIS to give you a chuckle while studying.
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1. Imagine god exists. Now imagine god *really* exists. Let’s pretend those are two totally different things.
2. You know how things have the properties of things? So clearly there must be something that has every property of everything, because of… reasons. So… god!
3. I don’t know how everything started, therefore God.
4. The leap from 3 to 4 confuses me, the only explanation I can think is that he’s assuming the only reason to want to be happy and good is to try to get into heaven. “If it weren’t for god, I would strive to be unhappy,” thought no person ever.
5. I trust my own thinking because of trial and error. Things work out much better when I think than when I don’t think. So there must be something to it.
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One cannot prove the existence of God. One cannot disprove the existence of God. God is our present explanation for the most baffling of facts: the existence of being, or existence itself. There is also a completely rationalist reason for belief. If you believe in God and there is a God, no problem. If you believe in God and there is no God, no problem. If you don’t believe in God and there is no God, no problem. But, if you don’t believe in God, and there is a God, You’ve got a problem. Because there is no guarantee that the rationalism of man is the rationalism of God. Belief in God is the safest bet, whether such a belief is true or not. Not entirely snark.
You might want to give some credit to Pascal for his Wager…
But, in response to the article as a whole, I think it’s a shame that the poster had to dumb down the first four to the point of absurdity. Regardless of whether or not they were refuted, they’re interesting arguments that deserve to be considered.
There’s still a flaw with Pascal’s Wager. 1. You choose to believe in God because the benefits outweigh the risks. You believe in the wrong god, and the REAL one isn’t very happy about it, so you (for example) go to Muslim hell for eternity for believing in the Christian God. 2. God is smart enough to realize you only believe in him because you don’t want to risk the consequences, and isn’t very happy about it because that’s not real belief, so you still suffer said consequences.
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Now it is such a bizarrely improbably coincidence that anything so mindbogglingly useful [the Babel fish] could have evolved by chance that some thinkers have chosen to see it as a final and clinching proof of the non-existence of God. The argument goes something like this: “I refuse to prove that I exist,” says God, “for proof denies faith, and without faith I am nothing.” “But,” says Man, “the Babel fish is a dead giveaway isn’t it? It could not have evolved by chance. It proves you exist, and so therefore, by your own arguments, you don’t. QED” “Oh dear,” says God, “I hadn’t thought of that,” and promptly vanishes in a puff of logic. — Douglas Adams, The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (book one of the Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series), p 50
Yea..I’m gonna go ahead and leave this here… “Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.” ― Marcus Aurelius