Influences forming Plato’s views of the world workbook answers

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Exam-style question

Part (a)

Start with an explanation, without too much detail, of the fact that the first three of Aquinas’ Five Ways are versions of the Cosmological Argument. In the approximately 28 minutes you have to write this answer it would be impossible to write an in-depth answer to all three versions, so after an outline it would be best to concentrate on one.

If you started with Way 1 you could approach it from the point of an attempt to respond to the often-asked question about where the universe came from if there is no God. Then, despite what Hume says, the normal understanding of cause and effect, namely that there is no effect without a cause, is not only a strong belief among most people but you can put together philosophical arguments in its favour.

Part (b)

While the Cosmological Argument could be seen as a foundation for evaluation here, you could also use knowledge from other parts of the course. An analysis of the critique of philosophers such as Hume and Russell would be a perfectly good answer provided that you evaluate their views and do not just describe them.

Alternatively, you could use knowledge of modern science, which has a whole new understanding of the universe, particularly at the quantum level. There are arguments that may imply that some things in our universe could appear out of nothing and have no perceivable cause. Again, this could be a great evaluation provided you critique the issues.

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