Relationship of necessary being and contingent

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relationship of necessary being and contingent

connection between the terms of a statement consists in this very thing, as Aristotle affirmative proposition, whether it be necessary or contingent, universal or. A necessary fact is one that has to be the case, whereas contingent facts . What best describes the relationship between contingency and unpredictability? a. When the theist, therefore, asserts that God is the necessary being, we is a connection between God and all other beings, a connection in virtue of They are actually contingent beings exactly because they don't exist in.

That is not of course evidence e. That is, God cannot fail to exist. How does he show this? Wrap your mind around this prose make sure you have coffee first: When the theist, therefore, asserts that God is the necessary being, we may construe his remark in the following way.

But neither do believers ask that question.

Cosmological argument - Wikipedia

Outside of theism, so to speak, the question is nonsensical, and inside of theism, the question is never asked. But, if one agrees with most contemporary philosophers that divine simplicity is deeply problematic if not incoherentthen one will want to look for another solution to the problem or give up the dependence claim and insist that the sovereignty-aseity intuition does not require abstracta to depend on God. A fourth solution, and perhaps the most promising one, is to find fault with the Lewis semantics for counterfactuals see LeftowVander LaanWierengaDavidsonand Davis Again, we've seen that on the Lewis semantics, any proposition is counterfactually implied by a necessary falsehood.

Call a counterfactual with a necessarily false antecedent a counterpossible. It seems that there are some counterpossibles which aren't trivially true, and it also seems that there are some that are false. Consider 2 If an omniscient being knew no mathematics, he would fail Calculus.

That is, although the antecedent of 2 is necessarily false, the conditional is true because of the relationship between the antecedent and the consequent.

relationship of necessary being and contingent

We also can see that 2 appears to be true in a non-trivial manner if we consider 3 If an omniscient being knew no mathematics, he'd do well in Calculus.

On the Lewis semantics, 3 is true, trivially. But 3 appears to be false, and 3 makes it even clearer that 2 is non-trivially true.

But then something seems amiss with the Lewis semantics in the way it deals with counterpossibles—or at least some philosophers have concluded this from examples like the two above. David Vander Laan and others have argued that in order to account for counterpossibles that are non-trivially true and even false, we must expand the Lewis semantics for counterfactuals to include impossible worlds.

We thus amend the semantics in the following way. The metaphysical waters are deep here, and an investigation into the adequacy of this sort of proposal is beyond the scope of this essay. However, to the extent that one wants to maintain both some sort of possible worlds semantics for counterfactuals which is based on similarity relations between worlds and most philosophers agree with this sort of accountand one wants to maintain that not all counterpossibles are trivially true, one might think something like Vander Laan's proposal has to be correct.

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If one wants to maintain that the dependence of abstracta on God entails that certain counterpossibles are true, but not all, and not all trivially-so, a semantics like Vander Laan's is most promising. God and Abstract Objects II: We have noted three different manners whereby abstract objects may depend on God: We will concern ourselves, then, with a Leibnizian account.

Cosmological argument

Because it is not clear how to understand abstract objects being inside God's mind as anything more than a metaphor which is strictly falseMorris and Menzel make the plausible claim that the relationship between God's mental activity and abstract objects is a causal one.

God's thinking the thoughts he does causes abstract objects to exist.

relationship of necessary being and contingent

But problems arise immediately. The theistic activist claims that God causes properties such as being omniscient, being omnipotent, existing necessarily, being able to cause abstracta to exist, and having cognitive activity to exist. She also claims that God causes his own haecceity, being God, to exist. Surely, God's being able to cause abstract objects to exist must be posterior to his having properties like the ones mentioned above.

And if God has these properties, they must exist.

relationship of necessary being and contingent

But, the proponent of this theory is committed to the existence of properties being posterior to God's causing them to exist. Thus, the objection concludes, theistic activism is false. However, there is a response that the theistic activist can give at this point. It might be claimed that although God's ability to cause abstracta to exist is logically dependent on his having certain properties, it is not causally dependent.

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The account would be problematically circular only if God's ability to cause abstracta to exist were causally dependent on his having certain properties, and his having these properties were in turn causally dependent on his having caused these properties to exist.

There is a circle of logical dependence here as there is between any two necessary truthsbut there is no circle of causal dependence.

Certainly, the above response is right in that if there is a problem of circularity, it is one of causal circularity. Earlier, we saw that there for the theistic activist is a one-way causal relationship between God's cognitive activity and the existence of abstracta such as being the number two. We can say that the necessary existence of being the number two or any abstract object causally depends on God's having the cognitive activity that he does. Or, perhaps we might say that the necessary existence of being the number two causally depends on God's being omniscient, omnipotent and existing necessarily.

However, the entities on which being the number two causally depends are themselves properties.

Plantinga: Why God is a necessary being « Why Evolution Is True

On what do they causally depend? It seems that on the activist account they wind up causally depending on themselves. But this is incoherent, one might charge.

Furthermore, one might think that there are additional problems for the theistic activist.

relationship of necessary being and contingent

There is a distinction between an abstract object's existing and its being realized, instantiated, or obtaining, etc. God causes all properties to exist, but he only causes some of them to be exemplified.

He causes the property being red to exist, but there are many occasions where he doesn't cause its exemplification. I may paint my car red, and in this case pace Malebranche God would not be causally responsible for the exemplification of being red. Suppose that we could show that, in causing properties such as being omnipotent and being God to exist, God causes them to be exemplified.

Then, the theistic activist would be in dire straits. Claiming that God causes himself to exist and to be omnipotent is all by itself quite implausible. However, if we could show that God causes himself to exist and to be omnipotent, we also would have our causal circle. Certainly God's ability to cause abstracta to exist is relevantly dependent on his existing, and it also seems quite plausible that it is relevantly dependent on his being omnipotent.

Davidson argues we can show that theistic activism entails that God causes himself to exist and causes himself to be omnipotent. To cause something to exist is to cause its essence or, in the terminology of Plantingaits nature to be exemplified. Suppose God creates a certain table which has as a part of its essence being red. For, on the basis of the principle of causality nothing can come into existence without a cause, and that for every phenomenon or event there has to be a cause.

There is no doubt that some things in the universe come into being which did not exist before. We can see many examples of this in nature, such as blossoming of trees in spring after falling of their leaves and flowers during autumn, passing of nights and coming of days, ending of spring and beginning of fall, youth is followed by old age and old age by death, and so on.

All these things which did not exist before and are now existent are called phenomena.

relationship of necessary being and contingent

This means that the existence of every phenomenon is entirely dependent on that of another, and, therefore, it is contingent. In answer it may be said that both cases are possible; that is, the cause may be either contingent or necessary.

Now, if this cause the producer of the contingent effectis itself a necessary being, then our claim of necessary cause is proven. But if it is contingent, then we are faced with two alternatives: Therefore, in the case we accept the second alternative, that is, if we consider all causes in the chain of causation as being contingent, there are only two plausible hypotheses: Accordingly, the existence of the Necessary Being cannot be proved unless we follow Ibn Sina in showing that an infinite series or a vicious circle of causation is absurd and that the chain of causation should necessarily end in the Necessary Being.

In other words, we have to show the impossibility of a linear or circular chain of causation which does not end in the Necessary Being. Falsity of Circular and Infinite Series in Causation The invalidity of circular series can be proven in this manner. There can be two or more elements in the circle of causation.

If there are more than two elements, for instance A, B, C and D, we may represent the causal relationship in this way: