Does a Truly Ultimate God Need to Exist?

Sophia:1-22 (forthcoming)
Johann Platzer
University of Graz
We explore a ‘Neo-Cartesian’ account of divine ultimacy that raises the concept of God to its ultimate level of abstraction so that we can do away with even the question of his existence. Our starting point is God’s relation to the logical and metaphysical order of reality and the views of Descartes and Leibniz on this topic. While Descartes held the seemingly bizarre view that the eternal truths are freely created by God, Leibniz stands for the mainstream view that the eternal truths are grounded in God’s nature. We argue that the implausibility of Descartes’ doctrine stems mainly from the assumption that there is a non-epistemic notion of absolute necessity that constitutes the ultimate court of appeal for all modal questions and that this assumption is questionable. We also question the assumption that God’s ultimacy merely requires that all reality be grounded in God in the sense of mere explanation, so that it suffices if the necessary truths are grounded in God’s nature but not in God’s will. This will lead us to a reassessment of Descartes’ position. In the final and main part of the paper, we push Descartes’ doctrine of the creation of the eternal truths to its ‘logical’ conclusion with the aim of getting to a novel conception of ‘God.’
Keywords God's nature  Modality  Laws of Logic  Quantum Mechanics  Descartes  Leibniz  Existence/Nonexistence
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s11841-018-0686-1
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

Remarks on Counterpossibles.Berit Brogaard & Joe Salerno - 2013 - Synthese 190 (4):639-660.
Impossible Worlds: A Modest Approach.Daniel Nolan - 1997 - Notre Dame Journal of Formal Logic 38 (4):535-572.
Are Quantum Particles Objects?Simon Saunders - 2006 - Analysis 66 (1):52-63.
The Impossibility of Moral Responsibility.Galen J. Strawson - 1994 - Philosophical Studies 75 (1-2):5-24.
Philosophical Explanations.Robert Nozick - 1982 - Critica 14 (41):87-93.

View all 27 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Descartes’ Eternal Truths, Created and Un Created.Predrag Milidrag - 2005 - Filozofija I Društvo 2005 (26):157-175.
The Creation of Necessity.Seacord Beth - 2015 - Journal of Philosophical Investigations at University of Tabriz 9 (17):153-171.
Descartes on the Creation of the Eternal Truths.Danielle Macbeth - 2017 - Acta Baltica Historiae Et Philosophiae Scientiarum 5 (1):5-27.
Cartesian Causation: Body–Body Interaction, Motion, and Eternal Truths.Tad M. Schmaltz - 2003 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 34 (4):737-762.
Cartesian Causation: Body-Body Interaction, Motion, and Eternal Truths.M. T. - 2003 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 34 (4):737-762.


Added to PP index

Total downloads
83 ( #81,121 of 2,309,317 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
83 ( #4,203 of 2,309,317 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads

My notes

Sign in to use this feature