Anselm seeks to explicate the being of a greatest being. i. e. God. He approaches this undertaking non via our experience of the existence. but instead efforts to explicate it entirely based upon ground. Anselm attempts to turn out the being of God by supplying us with a logical account. based upon our apprehension. definition. and necessity of God. It is impossible for God non to be. There is a certain nature through which everything that is exists. Anselm explains. is caused to be by something.
Everything that is. exists by virtuousness of something. and nil is able to be through nil. The implicit in premise here is that things do non be through themselves for there is no demand for their being. Leading to reason that it is implausible that anything at all is able to be because of nil. and that nil should be because of something. Building upon earlier statement. Anselm concludes that “whatever is [ … ] does non be except through something.
” Since. harmonizing to him. this premiss is true and since. as pointed out earlier in his statement. everything that is exists either through itself or through something. there must be one. or many. existences though which all things that are exist. Our being and the being of everything there is. hence. must be explained by a virtuousness of a higher being. or several of them. Anselm identifies and explores several possibilities of being of a higher being. or existences.
He points out that there may be several existences. instead than one. that are the ultimate cause of everything that exists. and presents one with his critical analysis of such thought. Anselm argues that if there is more than one of such existences so they themselves must be either through ( a ) one being. ( B ) individually through itself. or ( degree Celsius ) reciprocally through one another. If. he states. these existences exist through one supreme being. so all things that exist can non be through more than one being. Following this premiss. Anselm concludes that all things that exist must therefore exist through this one supreme being.
If. nevertheless. there are many existences. which exist individually and each through itself. so there must be a certain “power or belongings of bing through self” . by which they are able to be. Constructing upon this premiss. Anselm goes on to explicate that it is because of this peculiar “power or property” that each of these existences is able to be. Thereby reasoning that these existences exist by virtuousness of one greater power. without which they can non be. Once once more we are back to the same statement that merely one being can be. for plurality does non explicate itself.
Last. a 3rd option proposed by Anselm trades with existences bing reciprocally through one another. He argues that such idea is contrary to ground. For. it is irrational that “anything should be through a being on which it confers being. ” In other words. there can non be a being that is a giver and a taker. That. which exists by its ain virtuousness and is yet dependent on itself for being. Taking all of the statements and points stated supra. Anselm concludes that there can merely be one greatest being. i. e. God. and it is through him that everything that is exists.
If everything that is. exists by virtuousness of something. and nil is able to be through nil. so God merely can non be conceived non to be. God is that. “which alone exists in the greatest and highest grade of all” and nil greater can be conceived. For. everything that exists. exists through this greatest being. but it entirely exists through itself. One facet of Anselm’s statement that stands out in peculiar is a premiss upon which the whole statement is based. Explicitly. “Everything that is. exists either through1 something. or through nil.
But nil exists through nil. For it is wholly impossible that anything should non be by virtuousness of something. ” This. he holds to be the axiomatic truth. Once once more. the implicit in premise here is that things do non be through themselves for there is no demand for their being. Such things hence can non be the cause of their ain being. Therefore. it must be by virtuousness of a greater being. BIBLIOGRAPHY S. D. Deane. ( Trans. ) . St. Anselm. Basic Writings ( Second Ed. ) . La Salle. Illinois: Open Court Publishing Company. 1994.