|Philosophy 102: Introduction to
Aquinas' Argument from Governance
1. All things have an order or arrangement, and work for an end. (E.g., horses,
coal, oil, etc. for mans purposes; food chain; nitrogen cycle; Krebs cycle).
2. This order cannot be explained by chance, but only by some design or purpose.
3. Design or purpose is only a product of intelligence.
Therefore, nature is directed by Divine Intelligence.
1. Problems with the notion of order--consider a number series on I.Q. tests: 1 3 7
||Are these successive skipping of odd numbers or
adding in a sequence 2,4,6, etc., or drawn from
combinations from first three numbers-- 37, 713, 1337, and so on.
2. Various interpretations of order are imposed by the human mind: dots arranged in a
pentagon could represent pentagon, circle, Chrysler symbol, Renaissance man, star, etc.
1. How does one distinguish between an event of chance and a law of natural order? E.g.
the flipping of a coin.
2. Can order be described by chance or even chaos? (E.g., the adaptation of a
3. What precisely is the ultimate end of the universe? Is this a fallacy of
composition? (The parts are ordered, so the whole must be also).
4. Imperfections in the product point to imperfections in the maker.
5. Why cant there be many divine intelligences? Or the world itself be an
6. Basis of this argument is the argument from analogy (and a poor one) because the
last term of the formula goes beyond experience while the rest is rooted in experience. Paley's argument is similar. He holds:
[man-made product : man :: nature-made product : God]