This is a very fundamental question, which virtually all people have deliberated upon throughout the human history. The fast range of religions exemplifies the human tendency to grasp at the divine. It perhaps indicates the strongest proof that God exists. It may also be argued that all people have intrinsic desires, which they feel have to be filled. Besides, people’s desire for power, prosperity, sanctuary, eminence, sensual pleasure as well as indulgence in natural pleasures reflect their deepest desires for higher goodness. Accordingly, temporal gratification and even instinctive love are said to be ephemeral as well as eventually unsatisfactory (Aquinas, John, and Ian). As people coddle in their pleasures, their cravings continue being disgruntled. Conceited efforts in order to fill their voids have been made with increasing earthly desires, but little results have been recorded. These powerful, yet elusive pleasures are a clear call from the soul, which seeks something ungratified by worldly things. This paper considers the discontent of human heart as a mark of God reaching to all humanity to accept him. Besides, using Aquinas’ five proofs, this paper will show that God indeed exists.
Aquinas proposes five proofs, which human beings may utilize natural reason in order to proof the existence of God using extrinsic evidence. By using natural reason, people can logically deduce in the existence of God. However, strictly arguing, God’s being may not be definitively verified using laboratory experiments of tests. It should be understand that not all the things are subject to such laboratory or science tests. It would be unreasonable to argue, “If I cannot observe, taste, touch, sense or perceive something, then it is non-existent!” This implies to the fact that reason as well as extrinsic proofs have to be taken into consideration. Laboratory science or intrinsic evidence cannot in entirety proof the historical events, yet using reason people can attest these events’ occurrences. Furthermore, reason can give testimony the spiritual facet, which cannot be measured using material sciences.
There are five major proofs that Aquinas offers. According to Aquinas, the first evidence that God exists is his argument of motion. It observed that some things around the earth are in motion and it therefore, follows that whatever is in these things’ state of motion must have been placed in such state another such act. Thus, motion in itself is nothing less than the reduction of something from a state of potentiality to actuality.
Since something may not be in potentiality or reality concurrently, it then follows that something cannot move by itself. Perhaps a single, yet explanatory example of this is a rubber ball’s motionless on a flat surface. The rubber ball bears the potential for motion, but is not now on a position of actual motion. Thus, for this motion to happen, something else has to set the ball into motion, be it gravity, another moving object or even the wind. Yet, something must also have set that object into motion as well. Therefore, pre-existing motions initiate all motions. Nevertheless, this chain may not extend into perpetuity since that can disallow a first mover that set all else into movement. Devoid of a first mover, not anything can be set into motion. Meaning the first and primary mover is always acknowledged as God.
The second evidence that Aquinas gives follows closely with the first one, but expands on the principle of causality. According to Aquinas, in the world of sense, there is an order of cause and effect. Aquinas argues that there is a cause for all the things including the existence of the clock. He argues that nothing may be able to cause itself into being. For instance, a clock will not by itself cause its existence, but it must be created and caused to exist by something else (Aquinas and George). For this reason, a clockmaker creates the clock and makes it to exist, yet the material used by the clockmaker and him or herself never caused themselves to exist. In essence, both the materials and the clockmaker must have been caused into existence by something. Thus, the existence of all things may be attributed to a first cause, which must be responsible for all causes as well as all things. This is called the first cause of God.
The third proof that Aquinas explains is that all this in the world have a transitory nature, whereby they are all generated and then corrupted with time. Due to this, the things of nature may be argued to be ‘possible to be and also possible not to be.’ Furthermore, Aquinas argues that since it is not possible for all things to always exist, then it shows a time when they all never existed. Aquinas notes that if there are things, which are momentary (and not possible to be), then at one point there could have been nothing that existed. Though, as already explained in Aquinas’ first proof, there always has to be a first cause, which was not transitory in nature and one that was responsible for causing beginning of nature.
His fourth proof is that there is a particular gradation in entirely all the things. For example, Aquinas argues that things can be grouped as hot according to differing levels of temperatures. In categorizing objects/things, Aquinas says that there is something that always shows the maximum fullness of such characteristics. Therefore, the earthly qualities in man including justice and goodness have to attribute their different and varying qualities to a supreme being, God in this case. God is the origin of maximum as well as flawless justice or goodness.
In his fifth and final proof, Aquinas argues that the order of nature assumes a much higher plan in creation. Accordingly, the law governing the world assumes a universal law, which authored the order of the world. It cannot be argued that things or order in the universe is created by chance. For instance, if a person drops a glass on the floor, it shatters into pieces and it is said to become disordered. However, if one was to drop bits of the glass into the floor, they cannot assemble together to form a glass. According to Aquinas, this is a pure example of an inherent disorder, which is prevalent in the world when objects are left to chance. In consequence, the existence of order or natural laws assumes that there is a divine power that authored the universe into existence (Aquinas and Williams).
From the discussion above, the proofs that Aquinas offers indicate numerous truths about the existence of a divine God. In particular, the existence of life as well as the order of creation may be highly attributed to God, who is the cause as well as creator of the universe and its occupants. Drawing from the principle of causality, it is clear that God is infinite and he is above the laws of nature or human universe. Therefore, in order for God to be the first cause, then he must have been in existence long before everything else became into existence in the universe. It is also evident that nature comprises all things that are not eternal, but ones that can be argued to be transitory. It is then right to argue that the world attributes its transitory nature into a first cause, which cannot be labelled temporary or be said to be part of nature. This means that God is neither indivisible from nature or that he is of a finite lifetime. Nature by itself is not God and God is known to be the divine source of justice as well as goodness, all attributes that are found in humanity in varying levels. In essence, human’s universal perception of justice demand a divine being. Besides, justice cannot be said to be a human attribute, or a feature created by human, but it is a quality that has been instilled into people by the creator. God is also a personal God; therefore, those qualities that make people/humans personal are what places humanity above other creatures such as animals and plants. In addition, because God is said to be a higher order of being, it follows that he is equally the very embodiment of a personal being.
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