Theory Of Knowledge Essay Research Paper Joe

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Theory Of Knowledge Essay, Research Paper Joe Janszen Philosophy 390 Paper #1 10-1-00 Theory of Knowledge ? First Short Paper The skepticism of the existence of God has been a heavily discussed topic since the existence of man. Many philosophers have had many writings analyzing the facts and possibilities to prove this argument. Saint Thomas Aquinas is the philosopher whom best analyzes the facts in a way for me to understand that God exists. Saint Thomas Aquinas can prove the argument of the existence of God in five ways. I have chosen to discuss the first paragraph in his thesis due to the least amount of confusion. The first paragraph contains the following from Saint Thomas Aquinas: The first and more manifest way is the argument from motion. It is certain, and evident to

our senses, that in the world some things are in motion. Now whatever is moved is moved by another, for nothing can be moved except it is potentiality to that towards which it is moved; whereas a thing moves inasmuch as it is in act. For motion is nothing else that the reduction of something from potentiality to actuality. But nothing can be reduced from potentiality to actuality, except by something in the state of actuality. Thus that which is actually hot, as fire, makes wood, which is potentially hot, to be actually hot, and thereby moves and changes it. Now it is not possible that the same thing should be at once in actuality and potentiality in the same respect, but only in different respects. For what is actually hot cannot simultaneously be potentially hot; but it is

simultaneously potentially cold. It is therefore impossible that in the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved, i.e., that it should move itself. Therefore, whatever is moved must be moved by another. If that by which it is moved be itself moved, then this also must needs be moved by another, and that by another again. But this cannot go on to infinity, because then there would be no first mover, and consequently no other mover, seeing that subsequent movers move only inasmuch as they are moved by the first mover; as the staff moves only because it is moved by the hand. Therefore it is necessary to arrive at a first mover, moved by no other; and this everyone understands to be God. In the passage, several arguments are discussed to prove that God

exists. The difficulty lies in the understanding of potentiality and actuality. Keeping in mind the focus is to prove that God exists was a good aid in translating some of Aquinas? writing. Saint Thomas Aquinas starts his argument discussing whatever is moved is moved by another. The movements all start with a first mover. The first mover moved another person that was potentially going to be moved by someone (the first mover). Aquinas talks about the movement that could happen, did happen, and how it happened in terms of potentiality and actuality. For ?X? which is in potential form, to become ?Y? which is the actuality of potential ?X?, then the only way for ?X? to have become ?Y? is from something that was already in actuality form. This explains the mover moving things. In the

example of the wood and fire, potentiality and actuality play a key role in the understanding of the existence of God. Aquinas says for wood to go from potentially to actually hot, something must be applied to the wood. In this case, fire would cause the wood to go from potentially hot to an actual hot state. It is impossible for the wood to be simultaneously in a potential hot state and an actual hot state. Although, the wood in the actual hot state could be simultaneously potentially cold when the fire is extinguished. The following statement may be an aid in understanding potentiality and actuality. If an object is potentially ?F,? the only way for it to become actually ?F? is for it to be affected by ?something in a state of actuality.? In another sense, whatever is doing the