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Nishant Xavier

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A Mathematical Form of St. Thomas' Argument from Contingency:
« on: September 10, 2023, 05:51:44 pm »
Just up: https://reasonstobechristian.com/f/a-mathematical-form-of-st-thomas-argument-from-contingency

A Mathematical Form of St. Thomas' Argument from Contingency.
10 September 2023



The traditional argument from Contingency was made by Saint Thomas Aquinas like this:

" In the scholastic era, Aquinas formulated the "argument from contingency", following Aristotle in claiming that there must be something to explain why the Universe exists. Since the Universe could, under different circumstances, conceivably not exist (contingency), its existence must have a cause not merely another contingent thing, but something that exists by necessity (something that must exist in order for anything else to exist).[18]" [1]

St. Thomas is saying that no Contingent Being can be the Ultimate Reason for All Existence. If any being is contingent, it does not exist necessarily. It therefore depends on some earlier being. But if this earlier being were likewise contingent, the series would never end, which is impossible. Another way we can arrive at the same conclusion is to realize that if all things existed contingently, then at one time nothing existed. But that is impossible. So, by reductio ad absurdum, One Non-Contingent, i.e. Necessarily Existing Being always existed - i.e. existed without beginning and end.

And this Being we call as the Lord our God. Hallelujah!

A Mathematical Form of the Contingency Argument:

In the course of a debate with Atheists (and this is part of the reason why this author likes debates and discussions as part of Apologetics and Evangelism - they also help refine one's own thinking in Spirit-led ways), this author realized the Argument could be formulated in a Mathematical Form:

St. Thomas Aquinas' argument from contingency may also be formulated like this:

1) Let each contingently existing being consider himself Bn

2) Then, because he exists contingently, he depends for his existence on a prior being Bn-1.

3) Now, Bn-1 likewise, if it is contingent, depends on Bn-2.

(4) Nevertheless, this series cannot go on until Infinity.

(5) At a certain time, we will arrive at a B1, the First Being in existence, and

(6) since there is no "zeroth" Being or B0, B1 exists Necessarily, i.e. is not a contingent being.

(7) Therefore, B1, the First Being in existence, is God.

This Being B1, exists non-contingently, i.e. eternally, without beginning or end, unlike the contingent universe which we now know scientifically to have begun.[2]

References and Links:

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cosmological_argument#Argument_from_contingency

[2] "Most astronomers use the Big Bang theory to explain how the universe began." https://www.amnh.org/explore/ology/astronomy/how-did-the-universe-begin

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