‘Why is there something rather than nothing?’ Assess whether the existence of the universe requires God as a first cause? The concept that there cannot be nothing and so must be something is due to the evidence we as human beings have experienced throughout our lives; every effect ever made has had a cause. Aquinas used the laws of Motion and Design to demonstrate how every action must have a correlating reaction, and related this to his argument for God being the first cause – the uncaused causer. This is laid out in the Cosmological Argument, taken directly from the Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry; 1.
It is possible for those things not to exist.
Whatever has the possibility of non existence, yet exists, has been caused to exist. Something cannot bring itself into existence, since it must exist to bring itself into existence, which is illogical. 4.
There cannot be an infinite number of causes to bring into existence. 5.
An infinite regression of causes ultimately has no initial cause, which means there is no cause of existence. Since the universe exists, it must have a cause. 6.
Therefore, there must be an uncaused cause of all things. 7.
This uncaused cause must be God.
The first proposition, that things do exist, is logically sound, as if things did not exist that would include our conscious thought, and we clearly demonstrate enough existence of conscious thought to even be able to physically claim that ‘things do or do not exist’. The second proposition, that things that can exist can also not exist, is where the argument begins to demonstrate its flaws. There is no such evidence to support this claim; according to the law of the conservation of energy, energy and matter cannot be destroyed, only changed. Energy can become matter, and vice versa, energy can become a different kind of energy and matter a different kind of matter, but they cannot stop existing. Admittedly, with scientific advances, perhaps at some point in...
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