more from Norman Malcolm

Single Idea 1422

[catalogued under 28. God / B. Proving God / 2. Proofs of Reason / a. Ontological Proof]

Full Idea

God's existence is either impossible or necessary. It can be the former only if the concept of such a being is self-contradictory or in some way logically absurd. Assuming that this is not so, it follows that He necessarily exists.

Gist of Idea

God's existence is either necessary or impossible, and no one has shown that the concept of God is contradictory


Norman Malcolm (Anselm's Argument [1959], 2)

Book Reference

'The Existence of God', ed/tr. Hick,John [Macmillan 1964], p.56

A Reaction

The concept of God suggests paradoxes of omniscience, omnipotence and free will, so self-contradiction seems possible. How should we respond if the argument suggests God is necessary, but evidence suggests God is highly unlikely?