Prove that God can be imagined not to exist

St. Anselm
St. Anselm | Source

Rebuttal to St. Anselm's Philosophy

To begin, I will say that ST. ANSELM’s presentation seems ridiculous to me. As a believer in some sort of higher power, I see where he is coming from that GOD is the greatest being one could imagine, but when we talk about imagination there is no limit to the extensive power that can be granted to any figure with-in our mind. I mean no disrespect to GOD what so ever, but with-in my mind, I can imagine GOD as the greatest, most powerful being ever to exist, then I can continue to imagine that any object I choose is even more powerful. I could imagine that the mouse that controls the pointer on my screen is the most powerful being in all existence. I do of course see that this is not true, and that a being or entity capable of creating everything that I can touch and see is far more powerful than my mouse. But in the mind of someone that has no belief in a higher power the mouse may as well be the ultimate power as opposed to GOD. Just as “The Lost Island” might be the greatest island in the world, and it may or may not exist, I can easily imagine one more extensive than anyone could ever describe to me. Furthermore, imagining it or being told about it doesn’t make it a reality. It is difficult for me to imagine our world with no creator, but if I leave behind all of my experiences and only use evidence that can be studied and scientifically evaluated it becomes quite easy to imagine, and even believe. It is the experiences that I can not explain or examine scientifically that cause me to believe in GOD, not what I can imagine, or what I’ve been told, or what I’ve read. Believe me I have read maybe too much on the subject. History and religion have been a passion of mine for over 25 years, and I have extensively researched both and looked for correlations between the two. Honestly, if it were up to facts and writings and philosophy to convince me, I would be an atheist. Every book I have read on the subject, which is in the hundreds I’m sure, has contained contradictions or impossibilities. For example, the Holy Bible (KJV) has three errors; at least, on the first page of Genesis. Back to the subject at hand, I believe that St. Anselm’s attempt at Ontological proof of God’s existence fails miserably. If one believes that GOD exists just because he can be imagined, than I want to meet that person, in hopes that they too can imagine giving me all of their valuables, which in comparison must be true as well. Equally, to say that GOD exists most truly because he can not be imagined not to exist is just a pun and really makes no since at all. GOD can be imagined not to exist; I am imagining it right now. I do know of his existence as a possibility, and I do understand many of the explanations of his existence, and what he is explained to be, yet can still imagine that this world came to be with-out his existence. I could even go as far as to say that I could imagine a world where the idea of GOD didn’t even exist, and no one in the entire world had ever heard of or thought of GOD or any god-like entity. After I ponder that for a moment, I do see a bit of strength in the argument, in that; the idea of GOD had to of come from somewhere, so if not from GOD then from where. Of course, there is the easy answer that he was invented by man, just as so many characters in thousands of fictional stories have been invented, which still leaves ideas to ponder.

The Lost Island
The Lost Island | Source

The Lost Island

Back to “The Lost Island” where an interesting point lies. I do understand that somewhere there is an Island that is more plentiful than all others. It is not imaginary, it is real, it may not be the legendary “Lost Island”, but one of the islands on this earth is superior to all others, at least for a specific purpose. Deciding which island that is for sure may be impossible, due to the fact that it is only ideal for a specific purpose, not all purposes. What one person considers superior will definitely differ from person to person, or purpose to purpose, and when you begin looking at it from culture to culture it will most likely vary even more extensively. The point I’m trying to make is that the diversity that exists between one religion; to the next is mostly defined by the barrier between cultures, and the perceptions and traditions of the individual involved. I know that this is completely off subject, but the opportunity presented itself, and I never pass up an opportunity to elaborate on religious perspective.

St. Anselm

Do you believe God must exist, just because he can be imagined?

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Comments 11 comments

TMApsey profile image

TMApsey 5 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

Hi dmop! I just wanted to say, I'm really enjoying your hubs. I'm not sure that I believe in god anymore, but if I did, I couldn't base my belief on the fact that he can be imagined. Anything can be imagined! I think what I struggle the most with is the concept that every has to come from somewhere.According to some physicists, everything is made up of energy, which has always existed, so are we wrong to assume that everything has to have an origin? And if all things are made of energy,things CAN come from nowhere, then god would not need to exist for the universe to be as it is.

dmop profile image

dmop 5 years ago from Cambridge City, IN Author

@ TMApsey, Thank you for reading and commenting. I too struggle with my own religious beliefs, I think that is why I have completed so much research on the subject. Though, I find that the more I learn the more questions I have.

TMApsey profile image

TMApsey 5 years ago from Wisconsin, USA

So true! I'm actually pursuing a BA in religion, When I started last year, I believed in god. The more I learn, the more I read, the less certain I have become. I am now borderline atheist, but I love studying religion and I don't intend to stop anytime soon!

Dreaver Endus profile image

Dreaver Endus 5 years ago from Coos Bay, Oregon

Myths and Legends always contain some sort of truth behind them.

So the perpetuation of the God idea created God. The perpetuation of Santa Claus created Santa Claus except there's a time where we tell our kids that he's just make believe thus removing him from our perception of reality.

An idea is a very real thing. It exists just as much as you or I, but it must be understood that it is just an idea. A voice with a name and no real physical form. God exists because people perceive him to exist.

In the actuality of it all though, perception aside, there is no God like the Bible suggests. You must view into the portal of mirrors and understand that there are multiple dimensions occurring inside of one another while mastering the dimensions that their realms envelope.

Our God? Our creator? Who created Him/Her? How many of His/Her kind are their, since even the Bible establishes a multitude of God's kind. And if something created that God, what created the Creator of the Creator?

God is a simplified idea created through the interpretation and perception of complex situation and the inability to properly describe them therefore deeming them Godly or Miraculous.

Simply put, God, as in a creator of some kind, definitely exists. God as we see him, is just an idea or, in my opinion, a misrepresentation.

I will be talking a lot more on this subject you should swing by and check it out some time.

Can't wait to read more from you, Great writing Sir!

John Sarkis profile image

John Sarkis 5 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

Hi dmop,

What you're talking about was the start of modernism in philosophy - the argument between Descartes and Locke - do we believe/disbelieve in God because he created us (innate idea), or do we believe/disbelieve in God because the world in which we have been raised in is constantly questioning this concept? (empiricism)

God Bless - voted up


dmop profile image

dmop 5 years ago from Cambridge City, IN Author

Dreaver Endus thanks for stopping by and commenting, I mill be following your writing.

John thanks for reading and commenting I greatly appreciate it, I will check out some of your work.

dmop profile image

dmop 5 years ago from Cambridge City, IN Author

For some reason, I keep finding Typos in my comments, I do apologize for my carelessness.

learnlovelive profile image

learnlovelive 5 years ago from U.S.

God does exist. Simply in the context of temporal and spatial recognition. Time and space exist and govern all that we perceive. To me GOD is but only EVERYTHING. Truly. Not in exaggeration. GOD is but all things known and unknown. There is no floppy arms or whimsy beard or booming voice... We cannot perceive GOD because we are god's meditation; there are only two choices - meld with the mediation and experience Moksha as some call it or transcendence as I simply put it...this would be a divine and permanent amalgamation of the spirit with the eternal ether that is "GOD"; or live in delusion. Samsara and fundamental Gnosticism pretty well sum it up for me. God is all things ever presented and we are a manifestation of anything {i.e. something} - therefore we are god manifest. We are instance of moment speaking and breathing. We are reality manifested. Hence I believe we can manifest reality. Superlatively.

dmop profile image

dmop 5 years ago from Cambridge City, IN Author

@ learnlovelive, very interesting perspective, Thanks for the feedback.

move2move profile image

move2move 5 years ago

It doesn't matter if you believe in God or not! The quasi obligation to do so, is just a man-made principal, not a spiritual attribute. GOD just "IS" so, it has not even something to do with believing or not. What if the question where to discover that you, just like me and everybody else on the planet actually "IS" God, just from a different point of view?

On this point, a church starts to panic because up from here, they know you can't be controlled by fear anymore and that you really start growing spiritually ... plus... if you're right ... they loose you as they have nothing to keep you there anymore. The difference between Me and a traditional church man is that I allow myself and others to have their views and "Real" (instead of imagined) experiences on the question when the church man(pastor), willingly or not, through his own believes, doesn't even allow the idea of a concept to have a spiritual experience of what GOD is, free from what you've been taught or told in a 1st place about it. No, instead you ask yourself a whole lifetime if GOD even exists or not when there are so many ways to even figure it out by yourself instead being allowed by an instance when it has to be ...

You just need to believe that you can, basically ..just to believe in yourself and a lot of things will change in your life; you can even believe that some external God (Vishnu, Buddha, GOD, Jesus ... whoever)is on your side, make your steps and be successful, being grateful to your "External" God ...or not... believe at some spiritual entity at all and yet be kind and similarly successful than the one who does believe in a GOD.

What Ever the force is, that makes that things and thoughts "ARE" ... This force doesn't impose conditions to us about who we are and/or have to be/come, in opposition of like "WE" on the other hand, as human beings, expect GOD to be like we're taught. Conditions limit us and GOD'S non-conditionality ... makes him/her/it limitless ;-)!

Does God Exist? Look yourself respectfully deep in your eyes, every morning in front of your mirror and ask the same question every single time until you got the answer... try it.. ;-)!

dmop profile image

dmop 5 years ago from Cambridge City, IN Author

@ move2move you have some interesting, and thought provoking ideas thanks for sharing.

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