How many arguments does berkel

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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How many arguments does Berkeley offer for the existence of God When first encountered with this question, the answer seems almost simple and obvious: one, possibly two. All one would have to do is read Berkeley and count exactly how many arguments he gives for the existence of God. However, it seems that after reading the text and reading two of the responses to the text and a response to one of the responses, it really is not that simple at all. Instead it became horribly complicated with questions of the importance and definitions of certain words that Berkeley uses. In my essay, I am going to present Berkeley's supposed arguments for the existence of God followed by three different philosopher's opinions of what he actually meant in using these arguments and what the purpose of each argument was. The philosopher's names are Jonathan Bennett, E.J. Furlong, and Jonathan Dancy.

The arguments that supposedly exist in Berkeley's Principles and Dialogues are not presented in argument form, but I will use instead, Bennett's argumentative form of the arguments. By using his form, I do not concede that Bennett is correct in his own opinions, but that he has laid out a clear path to the arguments that Berkeley has given us. The arguments' names for the remainder of the essay will be the Continuity argument and the Independence argument (Bennett calls this argument the passivity argument, but for purely aesthetic reasons alone, I prefer to call it the independence argument). First of all, the continuity argument may be found, albeit in controversy, in §48 presented by Berkeley: For though we hold indeed the objects of sense to be nothing else but ideas which cannot exist unperceived; yet we may not hence conclude they have no existence except only while they...