Thread: Does God exist?
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Old September 25, 2010, 06:34 PM
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Zeeshan Zeeshan is offline
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For explanation of the above argument check out website of Christopher Small of University of Waterloo.

Quote:
Kurt Gödel is best known to mathematicians and the general public for his celebrated incompleteness theorems. Physicists also know his famous cosmological model in which time-like lines close back on themselves so that the distance past and the distant future are one and the same. What is less well known is the fact that Gödel has sketched a revised version of Anselm's traditional ontological argument for the existence of God.

How does a mathematician get mixed up in the God-business? Gödel was a mystic, whose mathematical research exemplified a philosophical stance akin to the Neo-Platonics. In this respect, Gödel had as much in common with the medieval theologians and philosophers as the twentieth-century mathematicians who pioneered the theory of computation and modern computer science. However, a deeper reason for Gödel's contribution to the ontological argument is that the most sophisticated versions of the ontological argument are nowadays written in terms of modal logic, a branch of logic that was familiar to the medieval scholastics, and axiomatized by C. I. Lewis (not to be confused with C. S. Lewis, or C. Day Lewis for that matter). It turns out that modal logic is not only a useful language in which to discuss God, it is also a useful language for proof theory, the study of what can and cannot be proved in mathematical systems of deduction. Issues of completeness of mathematical systems, the independence of axioms from other axioms, and issue of the consistency of formal mathematical systems are all part of proof theory.
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