In the excerpt by Aquinas, “Whether God Exists” the author attempts to explain five reasons as to why God’s existence is true. He begins his argument by offering objections given by those who refute God’s existence. These arguments against god question his goodness. Because God is supposed to be infinite goodness then there should be no evil in the world. But there is evil in the world. So, the argument is, why would God a holy deity such as himself prided with goodness and peace allow there to be evil in a world in which he is the creator of. Aquinas believes that God does exist and that he can prove his existence in five ways.
The first way is the argument of motion. Nothing can be in a state of motion without something putting it in that state of motion. Motion always has to start somewhere. Everything on this earth and even in our universe needed a catalyst.
Anything that is in motion required a first mover. Simple things such as a rock, water, an animal needed a force in order to put their movements and actions into motion. This first supposed mover is understood to be God. The second argument proposed is efficient causation. Efficient causation explains, if there is no first cause then how can there can be a second. A cause or a change always has to start somewhere, so there must always be a first cause. But, it is impossible for this to go on to an infinite number of causes. Therefore, it is believed in the text, “Whether God Exists” the fist efficient cause is be none other than God.
The third argument proposed comes from probability and essentiality. This argument poses the idea that it is impossible for something to always be in existence. If this is true, if there is nothing that can always be in existence then at this very moment there would be nothing in existence. Take, for example, human beings, Homo sapiens.
We are not everlasting creatures. We are born, we grow up, we age and then we die. Our death is inevitable. Everything has the ability to cease to exist at some point.
If there was nothing in existence to begin with, then it would be impossible for anything to have begun. Who began this existence? Who caused this necessity? It is understood that God is the one to have begun these circles of life. The fourth point comes from the graduation that are found in things, specifically among beings. This fourth meaning states that everyone and everything will always be true to itself. Although everyone is different in their good or bad ways they will be true to who they truly are. But who gives these beings their goodness, badness, truthfulness, etc.? It is also proposed that it is God. The fifth and final point stems from the governance of the world.
We witness things such as nature that we believe lack intelligence. We believe that since they lack a brain, heart and nervous system that they cannot decide things for themselves. Bodies of water cannot choose which way they flow, plants do not choose where they spout root, mountains do not choose where they travel. However, we witness water flowing in certain directions, mountains move and grow in ways in which astound us humans. These natural bodies act for a purpose.
This purpose in which they act in most likely wants to achieve the best result. Hence forth, something that lacks intelligence should not be able to fulfill a purpose unless directed by someone or some being that has been endowed with such knowledge and intelligence. Therefore, there is an intelligent being that does exist to control these natural things, and he who controls them also endows them with a purpose.
This being is God.