Modal collapse in Gödel's ontological proof

In Miroslaw Szatkowski (ed.), Ontological Proofs Today. Ontos Verlag. pp. 50--323 (2012)
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Abstract

After introductory reminder of and comments on Gödel’s ontological proof, we discuss the collapse of modalities, which is provable in Gödel’s ontological system GO. We argue that Gödel’s texts confirm modal collapse as intended consequence of his ontological system. Further, we aim to show that modal collapse properly fits into Gödel’s philosophical views, especially into his ontology of separation and union of force and fact, as well as into his cosmological theory of the nonobjectivity of the lapse of time. As a result, modal collapse should not be conceived in Gödel so much as a deficit, but rather as a kind of the rise of modalities to the “perfect” being. We further show that, in accordance with Gödel’s ontology, the concepts of modality and time should be derived in terms of the “fundamental philosophical concept” of cause. To give an example of how a formalization of such causative Gödelian ontology and ontological proof might look, we propose the transformation of GO into a kind of causally re-interpreted justification logic.

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Srećko Kovač
Institute of Philosophy, Zagreb

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