Descartes God Argument Analysis

1550 Words7 Pages
1) This essay aims to firstly analyse and explain Descartes’s God argument in Meditations three, specifically on the idea that perfection precedes imperfection. Then I will introduce possible oppositions to his view and attempt to defend it from his position. Lastly, I will provide my own view pertaining to his argument.
Firstly, the idea of perfection here is an assumption of God’s trait that also relates to being infinite. In Descartes’s time, God is deemed to be omnipotent, omnibenevolent and omniscient. After the establishment of himself as a thinking being in the midst of systematic-doubt, Descartes relies primarily on reasoning as he uses mathematical and geometrical concepts of 2+2=4 and triangle to derive the idea of perfection where
…show more content…
When such concepts are undoubtable, where it is impossible to think of a 4-sided triangle or 2+2=5, it lacks limitations in its function, meaning that it can be considered perfect in its own way. Descartes thus derives the notion of perfection from the concepts and concludes God’s existence using two important ideas. The first is that “something can’t arise from nothing” (Bennet 2004, 12) while the latter is perfection precedes imperfection. The first phrase can be phrased as “something must come from something” (Bennet 2004, 12) where it highlights Descartes’s idea that everything, even if they are illusions or imagination, must have a cause. To Descartes, many things in reality are false to perceptions and they exist as imperfections. However, imperfect things, corporeal or incorporeal must stem from something that is more perfect. Thus, if all reality including Descartes himself are considered imperfections, they must stem from a creator who is more perfect. Such perfect creator would therefore be God. It is important to note that…show more content…
This is because, one can argue that mathematical or geometrical concepts are created by mathematicians just as how fictional characters are conceived by authors. Just like a perfect triangle, a fictional character does not exist in reality. The main functions of such conception of ideas lie in its applicability. For instance, the idea of a fictional character in a story book aims to fulfil the author’s purpose in highlighting a certain message. Similarly, religious writings such as the bible are also documented by humans, who might have vested interests in spreading their religious beliefs. Hence, if mathematical or arithmetical concepts of 2+2=4 is created by humans, then it would seem that humans created something that bears the notion of perfection, where these concepts are largely irrefutable. This suggests strongly that it is then possible for imperfection to precede perfection as in this instance. This would also mean that Descartes’s idea of a perfect being is conceived and not implanted by
Open Document