"Why does anything exist at all, as opposed to nothing?"
"Is there an explanation for every being that exists?"
This is the fundamental question, many say, to all of philosophy. It also happens to be the primary question that Leibniz attempted to answer as he formed his version of the Cosmological Argument. Who is "Leibniz", you may ask?
Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (July 1, 1646 – November 14, 1716) was a German mathematician and philosopher. He wrote in different languages, primarily in Latin , French and German.
Leibniz occupies a prominent place in the history of mathematics and the history of philosophy. He developed the infinitesimal calculus independently of Isaac Newton, and Leibniz's mathematical notation has been widely used ever since it was published. He became one of the most prolific inventors in the field of mechanical calculators. While working on adding automatic multiplication and division to Pascal's calculator, he was the first to describe a pinwheel calculator in 1685 and invented the Leibniz wheel, used in the arithmometer, the first mass-produced mechanical calculator. He also refined the binary number system, which is at the foundation of virtually all digital computers.
Leibniz made major contributions to physics and technology, and anticipated notions that surfaced much later in biology, medicine, geology, probability theory, psychology, linguistics, and information science. He wrote works on politics, law, ethics, theology, history, philosophy, and philology. Leibniz's contributions to this vast array of subjects were scattered in various learned journals, in tens of thousands of letters, and in unpublished manuscripts. As of 2011, there is no complete gathering of the writings of Leibniz.
In the field of philosophy, one of the greatest accomplishments of this great Christian man, is the Cosmological Argument for God's existence, based upon finding a sufficient explanation for the universe. It proceeds in this fashion:
- Everything that exists has an explanation, either in the necessity of it's own nature, or in an external cause.
- If the universe has an explanation, that explanation is God.
- The universe exists.
- Therefore, the explanation of the universe is God.
Does this argument make sense? Is it coherent? Does it contain logical errors?
Watch and find out..........