Term Paper: Debating on the Existence of God

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Existence of God

For centuries there have been arguments centering around the existence of a Divine Creator. These ideas about God have been debated far earlier than the Christian world, and actually seem to form the basis of philosophical thought -- what is knowledge and where do we get it? How can there be evil in a world created by an omnipotent God? If God exists, who or what created God? In 1948 the British Broadcasting Company hosted a debate between Father Frederick Copleston, a Jesuit Priest, and the agnostic philosopher Bertrand Russell.

Both agree that Christianity is a term than implies the belief in God and immortality of the saved soul, and that Christ is the Savior of humans and the wisest of men. If one does not believe those constructs, one cannot be a Christian. Russell notes that if one does not believe those constructs, one cannot be a Christian. He then identifies the arguments for the existence of God. Christianity cannot prove the existence of God, it requires that one have faith that God exists or use unaided reason. For Russell, Christianity is a political organization created to complete a hierarchy. He believes it was necessary for the early Church Fathers to control a large population, to find ways of increasing membership, and frankly, to find commonality with paganism so that a strict hierarchy and work-ethic could be multiplied.

Father Copleston, on the other hand, thinks the existence of God can be proven philosophically. If there are absolute values and truths, there must be an ultimate causality to make these truths. Just because we cannot completely define the nature of God does not imply non-existence. Instead, because there are creations, there must be a creator; because there is light, there is dark, good there is evil, and so on.

Debating the existence of a Divine Creator may seem to some as an argument that is circular. Instead, we might view this as a way to mentally help us define what knowledge and truth are in relation to the totality of humans -- not just… [END OF PREVIEW]

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