Anselm’s ontological statement described in portion ( a ) . was refuted in his ain life-time. by Gaunilo. who demonstrated in a decrease ad absurdum of his ain. that if the logic of the statement were applied to things other than God. it led to invalid decisions. Gaunilo didn’t place any specific mistake with the statement. but argued that something must be incorrect with it. because if there wasn’t anything incorrect. so we can utilize its logic to turn out anything. which we may hold no ground to believe to be true.
For case. Gaunilo argued that it’s possible to build an statement in the exact same signifier as the ontological statement. that claims to turn out the being of the perfect island: this island must be for if it did non so it would be possible to gestate of an island greater than that island than which no greater can be conceived. which is absurd. Therefore. if the ontological statement plants. so the statement for the being of the perfect island must work excessively. They are both logically similar. so they stand. or fall together.
However. the statement for the island is clearly specious. as we have no ground for this ‘perfect island’ to be. Unless a theist can indicate to some relevant difference between his statement for the being of God. and Gaunilo’s statement for the being of the perfect island. the theist will hold to abandon the ontological statement for the being of God. every bit good as Gaunilo’s. because if one fails. so they both do. as they are so similar. This failing of the ontological statement adds fuel to the fire for atheists through Gaunilo seting frontward his statement for the being of the perfect island as an expostulation to the ontological statement. He knew that they would both autumn. which shows that neither statement works which farther supports atheists.
Another failing of the ontological statement which gives support to atheists is Immanuel Kant’s expostulation to it: Being is non a Predicate. Fundamental to both Anselm’s and Descartes’ signifier of the ontological statement is that being is a predicate. an property or a quality that can be possessed or lacked. These qualities for illustration. may or may non belong to a thing or being and their presence or absence is portion of our apprehension and apprehensiveness of it. Kant observed nevertheless. that being isn’t associated with the definition of something. since it didn’t attention deficit disorder to our apprehension of that thing.
This supports godlessness as being is simply something that we can hold or non hold. and it is absurd to state what something is like without it bing. It besides supports godlessness as an atheist would state that we can’t ascribe being a priori to a definition of a perfect being.
Bertrand Russell furthered Kant’s observations. suggesting that ‘existence’ was non a predicate. but a term used to entirely bespeak the case of something in the ‘spatio temporal’ universe. To state something exists merely tells us that that thing occupies a infinite on the Earth. For illustration stating ‘Cows are brown. and exist’ Tells us merely one thing: they are brown. The ‘and exist’ shows that they are on the Earth. nevertheless it’s a tautology since to state they are brown. efficaciously suggests that they exist and aren’t fanciful.
Thomas Aquinas had already questioned this facet of the ontological statement. claiming that Anselm was guilty of doing ‘transitional error’ – traveling from the definition of God to the being of Him. He observed that Anselm besides was guilty of doing an premise about the definition of God that was non needfully shared by all trusters. This supports godlessness because non all trusters believed in Anselm’s definition of God. which poses the inquiry. if people have different positions on the right or incorrect definition of God. what’s to state that they could Wholly be incorrect. and godlessness is the truth in it all? Furthermore. Aquinas said that understanding the term ‘God’ means that God exists in the apprehension. non in world.
God’s being in world must be demonstrated a posteriori. with grounds or experience. Atheism is supported in this manner. as atheists could reason that anyone can believe what they like in their heads. but something has to be apparent in material signifier in world to be really existent. Overall. the failings by and large give support to godlessness as they show options and defects in the ontological statement. The ways in which atheists interpret the critic’s expostulations leads to farther belief that God does non be. Atheists are supported chiefly by the fact that the ontological statement is a priori. so does non trust on empirical grounds. hence if there was empirical grounds for God’s being. they might be swayed somewhat in their beliefs.