Subject Philosophy Philosophy - Other

Question

Each answer should be between 450-500 words, although you may write more. Your answers should be reasoned arguments developing a position on the point of the question. If you quote from the readings, use only brief passages (not exceeding a sentence).

Questions:

1- Bertrand Russell presents a series of criticism against various arguments purporting to prove the existence of God. Which criticism do you think is the most effective? Your response should include a) a brief statement of the argument Russell is criticizing and b) an analysis of the strengths of Russell's counter-position.

2- Select one of the arguments Russell employs in refuting one of the classic demonstrations of the existence of God and critically evaluate that refutation. In other words, defend the position Russell is criticizing by a) introducing objections to Russell's refutation and b) reinforcing the original argument with your own reasoned position.

Solution Preview

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1. Bertrand Russell is one of the most referenced philosophers so far as refuting the existence of God is concerned. He provided multiple arguments against God, each of which designed to be capable of standing on its own merits. Of these, his argument from design is one of the most intriguing, allowing for debate on many different fronts.

In a very broad stroke, the argument from design proposes that the world is too perfect and well suited for human life to have occurred by chance. Is it truly possible to have such a large amount of organic material present in such a relatively small volume of the Universe? Can we really allow for pure happenstance to create atomic particles that so neatly combine to form people and the food they need to survive, much less the materials they use in their day-to-day...

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