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By Peter Cole

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The proposition ‘All bachelors are married’ is analytic but false. It is analytic because the married state is part of the concept of ‘bachelor’. The fact that it is analytic does not tell you whether it is true or false, but merely how to decide whether it is true or false. The way to decide is by considering the meaning of the words. In passing it should be noted that a sentence such as ‘The cat sat on the mat’ is clearly not an analytic statement, since there is nothing in the analysis of the concept of ‘cat’ that contains the idea of ‘sitting on the mat’!

The AO2 needs some discussion about proof. Higher level answers will discuss in terms of inductive and deductive arguments, linking it to the cosmological argument form. There will be a weighing up of the strength of the argument and some conclusion drawn in terms of a lesser or greater probability of God’s existence. Higher level answers will explain the difference between probability and proof. Further questions to consider 1 Discuss the extent to which the cosmological argument for the existence of God offers a coherent explanation of the universe.

In other words, only God, a necessary being, can be the complete explanation for the existence of the universe that contains contingent items. It is the explanation that requires no further explanation. Some 200 years earlier, David Hume had argued that it was illegitimate to move from saying that every event in the universe has a cause to the claim that the universe has a cause. Bertrand Russell made a similar point by remarking that this was like moving from saying that every human being has a mother to the claim that the human race as a whole has a mother.

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