Human freedom contradicts the existence of a god

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Parent debateThis argument is used in the debate Does God exist?.
Argument againstThis argument is a “con” argument in the debate Does God exist?.
Keywords: God, Free will[ edit ].

SummarySummary

For Sartre, man is not what he should be if God had created him: he should have purposes inscribed in him, have been made to achieve a goal, conform to a Law. But "if man [...] cannot be defined, it is because he is first of all nothing. Only then will he be, and he will be as he has become. Thus, there is no human nature, since there is no God to conceive it. Man is not only as he conceives himself, but as he wills himself" ("Existentialism is a humanism"). Unlike a washing machine, man does not have a "good program" for use; if God existed, God would limit this situation of man open to all possibilities and making himself. The religious conception is wrong, because man creates himself within a horizon of possibilities.

QuotationsQuotes

“If God does not exist, there is a being in whom existence precedes essence, a being that exists before it can be defined by any concept, and this being is man [...]. What does it mean here that existence precedes essence? It means that man first exists, encounters himself, arises in the world, and then defines himself. If man, as existentialism conceives him, is not definable, it's because he is first of all nothing. He will only be afterwards, and will only be as he has made himself. Thus, there is no human nature, because there is no God to conceive it. Man is not only as he conceives himself, but as he wills himself, and as he conceives himself after existence [...], as he wills himself after this impulse towards existence, man is nothing other than as he makes himself.”

Jean-Paul Sartre, Existentialism is a humanism.

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ReferencesReferences

Arguments forJustifications

  • Argument forHuman freedom cannot be reconciled with divine omnipotence

Arguments againstObjections

  • Argument againstThere is no such thing as free will
  • Argument againstGod created man to be self-determining
  • Argument againstThe human being has a structure that includes the transcendent dimension
  • Argument againstFreedom is inexplicable within the framework of materialism

Parent debateParent debate