By traditional arguments, I mean argument widely and traditionally used for existence of God like:

Cosmological argument, Teleological argument, Moral argument, Ontological argument, Pragmatic arguments, Religious experience, Miracle argument

What are some non-traditional arguments for existence of God, where an argument is such that rational person will take it seriously.

An argument such as, "1. If this sentence is true, then God exists. 2. This sentence is true. 3. Therefore God exists." may not taken seriously by rational persons.

But what are some good non-traditional arguments for God's existence?

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    If God does not exit then, by the pressure of positive benefits, I would surely be compelled to create God. – christo183 Jan 14 '20 at 10:10
  • Hello, unfortunately this question is completely open ended and so does not fit the Q&A format of this site, which is designed around focused questions which can (in principle) be answered conclusively or even objectively. – curiousdannii Jan 14 '20 at 11:45
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    Hi curiousdannii, the question above is not 'open-ended' and can be answered conclusively and objectively, however there is a misleading problem with the use of the so-called predicate 'existence.' Existence is not a predicate at all; if it is one, it would be trivial at best. – Michael Lee Jan 14 '20 at 16:39
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    @curiousdannii I disagree. The question just seems to be one of "taxonomy". Most arguments for the existence of God are variations of the types that the OP mentioned, and they were just wondering if there are arguments that don't fit into those types. Understood this way, this seems, to me, answerable in an objective way. – Adam Sharpe Jan 14 '20 at 16:44
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    I'd strongly recommend the OP do a search on "Two Dozen or So Arguments God". This was the title of a paper delivered by Alvin Plantinga some years ago. It's now also the title of an collection of philosophy papers inspired by that talk. – Steve Lovell Jan 14 '20 at 16:55

I can think of a few arguments that don't fall into any of the categories your mentioned (ontological, cosmological, teleological, moral, etc.) that rational persons (philosophers) have propounded and defended:

God could be a properly basic belief (Plantinga): Many beliefs, such as there are other minds, that the world didn't come into existence five minutes ago, that I am typing an answer to the question right now, and so on, are formed non-inferentially. That is, I didn't reason from premises to conclusions (which is not to say that I cannot offer support for such beliefs, but that such support is "after the fact"), but rather the beliefs were simply caused in me by some factors outside of my immediate awareness. Plantinga argues for an externalist epistemology, so that whether a belief is warranted depends crucially on how the belief was formed and whether the right sort of conditions obtained. If my beliefs about God (and other beliefs about religious matters) are caused by the right sort of factors, then they may be warranted independently of, and prior to, any evidence I have for them.

Evolutionary argument against naturalism (Plantinga): If naturalism (atheism) and evolution are both true, we have no reason to suppose that our beliefs are true. Evolution selects on the basis of adaptive behaviour, not on the basis of true beliefs. Since any number of false beliefs (or no beliefs at all) may produce behaviour which is conducive to survival, and that survival-conducive behaviour is all we need to stay alive long enough to propagate, the odds that most of our beliefs (including the belief in naturalism) are true is very low. Since naturalism and evolution taken together are self-defeating, and the evidence in favor of evolution is great, we should reject naturalism.

Argument from desire: Most of us have a yearning for deeper meaning in life. This yearning for meaning is difficult to explain on atheism, since it doesn't seem to have any sort of survival benefit, nor does it seem to be a satisfiable desire. Since most universal and natural desires are satisfiable, the desire for deeper meaning is probably satisfiable too, and such a deeper meaning requires God (or at least something transcendent).


I found one paper in which the author writes some non-traditional argument for the existence of God, which can be summarized into the following categories:

  • Metaphysical argument
  • Nomological argument
  • Axiological argument
  • Noological argument
  • Linguistic argument
  • Anthropological argument
  • Meta‐argument argument

Source: http://www.academia.edu/download/59975353/Nontraditional_Arguments_for_Theism.pdf

In addition, a political argument for God's existence has been proposed:

Source: https://philpapers.org/rec/MCNBWA

Recently argument from beauty developed which is a much-neglected argument, and the author argues that the existence of God can best explain it.

Source: https://media.proquest.com/media/pq/classic/doc/4327269039/fmt/ai/rep/NPDF?_s=yecHathHxqUzaXO8C%2FvByO8nsnM%3D

Javad Taheri proposes Argument from unnaturalness of necessity for the existence of God:

Source: http://ri.urd.ac.ir/article_54768.html

Katherin Rogers argues that certainty indicates God and provide evidence for them:

Someone who is not powerfully committed to the non-existence of God, though, granting that we sometimes do have strongly certain beliefs about necessary propositions, ought to conclude that this provides some evidence for God.

Source: https://place.asburyseminary.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2073&context=faithandphilosophy

Chaotic unpredictability, emergent property, and fine-tuning may show that physical reality does not behave as just happened to be, but works under the direction of God, as scripture like Bhagavad Gita says:

This material nature is working under My direction, O son of Kunti, and it is producing all moving and unmoving beings.

Source: https://asitis.com/9/10.html

One author collected arguments for the existence of God, from which some are:

Conceptualist Argument. Quentin Smith, “The Conceptualist Argument for God’s Existence,” Faith and Philosophy 11 (1994), pp. 38-49. Robert Adams, Leibniz: Determinist, Theist, Idealist (Oxford, 1994), ch. 7. John Byl, “Theism and Mathematical Realism,” Proceedings of the Association of Christians in the Mathematical Sciences (2001), pp. 33-48. See especially the work of Richard Brian Davis, who is pioneering work in this area: “God and Modal Concretism,” Philosophia Christi 10 (2008), pp. 37-54

The Omnificence Argument. A much neglected but ingenious argument, John Bigelow, “Omnificence” Analysis 65/3 (2005), pp. 187-196.

The Argument from Temporal Duration of Composite Objects. David Braine, The Reality of Time and the Existence of God (Oxford, 1988).

Transcendental Argument. James Anderson, “If Knowledge then God: The Epistemological Theistic Arguments of Plantinga and Van Til,” Calvin Theological Journal (2005). David Reiter, “The Modal Transcendental Argument for God’s Existence,” The Confessional Presbyterian volume 7 (2011), pp. 147-152.

Incompatibility of Naturalism and Abstracta. J. P. Moreland, “Naturalism and the Ontological Status of Properties,” in Craig & Moreland, Naturalism: A Critical Analysis (Routeledge, 2000), ch. 4.

The Argument from Proper Function. See Mark Talbot, “Is it Natural to Believe in God?” Faith and Philosophy 6/2 (1989), pp. 155-171. Alvin Plantinga, Warrant and Proper Function (Oxford, 1993), especially Ch. 11. Alvin Plantinga & Michael Tooley, Knowledge of God (Oxford, 2008), pp. 20-30.

Source: https://appearedtoblogly.wordpress.com/theistic-arguments/

Edward Feser proposes five arguments in the book "Five proofs for the existence of God":

Professor Feser shows that if you believe any of the following propositions, you should also believe that God exists:

  1. Change is real.
  2. The things we see, experience, and interact with are made up of parts.
  3. Abstract objects, such as universals, numbers, propositions, and possible worlds exist.
  4. The things we see have distinct essences and existences.
  5. The principle of sufficient reason is true.

Source: "Five Proofs for the existence of God"

Joshua Rasmussen in the book, "How Reason can lead to God" step by step construct a pathway to how reason can lead to a vision of God.

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    I just wanted to second the recommendation for Joshua Rasmussen's How Reason Can Lead to God. Even though he does present his take on the "traditional" arguments (cosmological, teleological, moral, and ontological), I don't think I've ever seen them presented in such an engaging, convincing, and unpretentious way. – Adam Sharpe Jan 17 '20 at 22:16

The Simulator argument is one of the most novel new arguments for God's existence. It's based largely on the work of Oxford philosophy professor Nick Bostrom. I have a whole series on the topic at Partially Examined Life, but in brief the argument is this:

  1. If the mind and/or soul are entirely reducible to the physical, then it should be theoretically possible to create a human being, either through building it physically in the real world or simulating it on a computer (given enough knowledge and fine-grained control).

  2. Given the exponential advance of technology, if #1 is theoretically possible now, it will be a reality for our descendants, given that human beings don't die out before technology advances that far.

  3. If there's reason to believe that our descendants could simulate us, it's plausible to believe that they already have, and that we are in fact the simulated ancestors of our "descendants" (and not their actual ancestors).

  4. If we are in a simulation, then the creator of the simulation is in a godlike relationship to us.

  5. There is no reason to deny the simulation's creator the title of god.

If we reject premise 1, then we are accepting the real and irreducible existence of the mental and/or the spiritual, which means we are not in a wholly physicalist universe, and therefore that we don't have reason to reject the possibility of the existence of God on the basis of naturalism.

Note that neither horn of the argument entails that God exists, but only that we have no basis for rejecting the plausible existence of an entity that stands in a godlike relationship to us.

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