You are to write a 300 to 400-word essay concerning one of the questions below. The questions are based on readings we have previously covered in this class. While which questions you choose is up to you (you are only to write over one question), you must answer each part of the question in its entirety and within the minimum length requirement in order to be eligible for full credit (longer essays will not be deducted points for length). You may work with a classmate and may use your class notes and book, but you may not quote from any of the readings we have covered in this class nor from any other secondary source you find in a book, journal, or the internet. Also, be careful not to plagiarize what your neighbor says. Cases of copying or plagiarism will not be tolerated and will result in an automatic zero for both parties involved. The purpose of this assignment is to help students make a sincere attempt to grasp the content of the assigned texts, but not necessarily to “get everything right.” Therefore, in these reflection assignments you should attempt to demonstrate that you have done the required reading, that you have made a conscientious attempt to understand it, and that you are able to communicate in a reasonably articulate manner what you have understood. According to Anselm, “God” should be defined as “the greatest conceivable being.” Given this definition, Anslem is committed to the following: first, that God must exist necessarily (e.g., in every possible world); second, that God cannot be thought not to exist; and third, that one can only utter the phrase “God does not exist” without contradiction in the de dicto sense, not the de re sense. First, why does Anselm think that the definition of God as stated entails that God is a necessary being? Second, how does God’s being a necessary being connect to the notion that “that God cannot be thought not to exist.” Third and finally, what is the difference between de dicto and de re reference for Anselm, and why does he think that the phrase “God does not exist” can only be said without contradiction in the de dicto but not the de re sense?
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