Abbruzzese, John Edward. 2007. "The Structure of Descartes's Ontological Proof." British Journal for the History of Philosophy no.
Armogathe, Jean-Robert. 1995. "Caterus' Objections to God." In Descartes and His Contemporaries. Meditations, Objections and
Replies, edited by Ariew, Roger and Grene, Marjorie, 34-43. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Cress, Donald. 1973. "Does Descartes' 'Ontological Argument' Really Stand on Its Own?" Studi Internazionali di Filosofia no.
A discussion of the Gouhier-Gueroult controversy on the purpose of placing the ontological argument in Descartes' Fifth
———. 1975. "Does Descartes Have Two "Ontological Arguments?"." International Studies in Philosophy no. 7:155-166.
The ontological arguments of (1) the Fifth Meditation and (2) the Principles and the Response to the Second set of
Objections differ in that they have two distinct major premises. By means of a set of interlocking distinctions, I show how one might deal with the vicious
circle as well as resolve the dispute between Gueroult and Gouhier on the standing of the ontological argument in the Fifth Meditation."
Crocker, Sylvia Fleming. 1976. "Descartes' Ontological Argument." Modern Schoolman no. 53:347-377.
Curley, Edwin. 2005. "Back to the Ontological Argument." In Early Modern Philosophy. Mind, Matter, and Metaphysics, edited by
Mercer, Christa and O'Neill, Ellen, 46-64. New York: Oxford University Press.
de Finance, Joseph. 1959. "Position Anselmienne Et Démarche Cartésienne." In Spicilegium Beccense I. Congrés International Du Ix
Centenaire De L'arrivée D'anselme Au Bec, 259-272. Paris: Vrin.
Dicker, Georges. 1993. Descartes. An Analytical and Historical Introduction. New York: Oxford University Press.
Chapter 4. Meditation V: The Ontological Argument for the Existence of God pp. 147-176.
Doney, Willis. 1991. "Did Caterus Misunderstand Descartes's Ontological Proof?" In René Descartes. Critical Assessments. Vol. Ii,
edited by Moyal, Georges J.D., 344-353. London: Routledge.
———. 1993. "On Descartes' Reply to Caterus." American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly no. 67:413-430.
In Descartes' presentation of his a priori proof in the Fifth Meditation, there are three sorts of problems often passed over by commentators
which will occupy me here. In each case, I will first present the problem as clearly as I can and then consider some important information found in the First
Set of Objections and Replies concerning a solution of the problem." p. 413.
———. 2003. "Objections and Replies within the Fifth Meditation." British Journal for the History of Philosophy no.
Dougherty, Michael V. 2002. "The Importance of Cartesian Triangles: A New Look at Descartes's Ontological Argument." International
Journal of Philosophical Studies no. 10:35-62.
Abstract: "In this paper, I argue that commentators have missed a significant clue given by Descartes in coming to understand his
'ontological' proof for the existence of God. In both the analytic and synthetic presentations of the proof throughout his writings, Descartes notes that the
proof works 'in the same way' as a particular geometrical proof. I explore the significance of such a parallel, and conclude that Descartes could not have
intended readers to think that the argument consists of some kind of intuition. I argue that for Descartes the attribute of existence is a 'second-order'
attribute that is demonstrated to belong to the idea of God on the basis of 'first-order' attributes. The proof, properly understood, is in fact a
demonstration. Having brought to light the geometrical parallels between the ontological and geometrical proofs, we have new evidence to resolve the 'intuition
versus demonstration' controversy that has characterized much of the discussion of Descartes's ontological argument."
Dutton, Blake. 1993. "The Ontological Argument: Aquinas's Objection and Descartes' Reply." American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly
One might wonder what Aquinas's response would have been to Descartes' unique form of the ontological argument. He certainly would not, as
Descartes seems to think, find it compatible with his own natural theology. But how exactly would he have read it? Although one can only guess, I believe he
would have read it as a failed attempt to gain a supernatural knowledge of God by the natural light of reason alone. More specifically, he would have seen it
as an attempt to attain a knowledge of God that is accessible only to the elect in heaven who enjoy the beatific vision.
We have seen that Aquinas rejects the possibility of all natural knowledge which does not originate in the senses and is independent of any
sense-based image. This, of course, holds true for natural knowledge of God as well. However, these conditions do not pertain to the state of beatitude. In
that state, Aquinas tells us, the saints in heaven are granted an intellectual vision of the essence of God to which no created similitude is adequate. They
are said to see the divine essence by an uncreated similitude which, by virtue of being uncreated, cannot be produced by the abstractive activity of the
intellect upon the image. Here the intellect has a direct apprehension of its object which is not grounded in sense perception. Two features of this
account should strike us as familiar; the beatific vision is an intellectual vision of the essence of God, and it is not attained by the abstraction from an
image. These features are familiar because they are the very features we have found to characterize Descartes' account of clear and distinct knowledge of God.
Such knowledge, Descartes claims, is of the nature of God, and as it is attained only as the mind withdraws from any presentation of the senses or the
imagination, it is independent of any image.
We may also recall that for Descartes the existence of God is immediately and evidently known because in clearly and distinctly perceiving
the divine nature one also perceives that existence pertains to that nature. Aquinas, because he denies that we can have such natural knowledge of the essence
of God, denies that the existence of God is self-evident. Presumably, though, this would not be the case for the saints in heaven who are not bound by
dependence on the senses or reliance on images. We would expect that they, enjoying the vision of the essence of God, would have the kind of immediate and
evident knowledge of the existence of God that Descartes claims for himself. And this, it turns out, is exactly what we find. Aquinas writes that "just as it
is evident to us that a whole is greater than a part of itself, so to those seeing the divine essence in itself it is supremely self-evident that God exists
because His essence is His being" ( Summa contra Gentiles I, 11, V, 5). Once again, Descartes claims to see what Aquinas believes God has reserved
only for the eyes of the beatified." pp. 448-449.
———. 1993. "Suarezian Foundations of Descartes' Ontological Argument." Modern Schoolman no. 70:245-258.
Forgie, William J. 1974. "Existence Assertions and the Ontological Argument." Mind no. 83:260-262.
Many philosophers have claimed that Descartes' ontological proof rests on the assumption that existence is not a property and have then tried
to attack that assumption by arguing that existence assertions are not subject-predicate assertions. I try to show that this kind of attack on Descartes is
misguided. I distinguish a 'semantic' and an 'ontological' criterion of propertyhood. I argue that 1) Descartes' argument at most requires that existence be a
property in the ontological, not the semantic, sense; and that 2) if existence assertions are not subject-predicate assertions it follows only that existence
is not a property in the semantic sense."
———. 1976. "Is the Cartesian Ontological Argument Defensible." New Scholasticism no. 50:108-121.
Consider the following traditional criticism of Descartes' ontological argument. "Either Descartes' first premiss ('God is a supremely
perfect being') is a categorical assertion, in which case his argument begs the question by assuming the existence of a subject of such an assertion, or it is
a disguised hypothetical assertion, in which case Descartes' conclusion --' God exists' -- will also be hypothetical and so will lack existential import."
Anthony Kenny has recently argued that this criticism can be avoided by construing Descartes' first premiss as a non-question-begging, but nevertheless
categorical, assertion. I consider a number of different ways of so construing Descartes' initial premiss, e.g., as an assertion about a being in fiction or
(following Anselm) a being in the understanding, or an assertion about a Meinongian "pure object" (Kenny's example). I argue that construing Descartes' first
premiss in any of these ways does nothing to avoid the heart of the traditional criticism."
———. 1990. "The Caterus Objection." International Journal for Philosophy of Religion no. 28:81-104.
A successful ontological argument must meet Caterus's objection that the argument's conclusion lacks existential import. Caterus thought this
was true of Descartes's argument because Descartes's conclusion was merely a hypothetical, or conditional, statement. However, it is easy -- by a device I call
"subjectizing" the argument -t o produce an ontological argument with a categorical, not hypothetical, conclusion. Anselm's arguments, as well as certain
contemporary modal arguments, are "subjectized" and so appear to avoid the Caterus objection. This paper examines the nature of the subjectizing process and
argues that even though it yields ontological arguments with categorical conclusions it guarantees that those conclusions still lack existential import."
Galonnier, Alain. 1997. "Descartes Et Saint Anselme: Du Proslogion À La Meditatio Tertia." In Descartes Et Le Moyen
Åge, edited by Biard, Joël and Rashed, Roshdi, 293-306. Paris: Vrin.
Goudriaan, Aza. 1999. Philosophische Gotteserkenntnis Bei Suárez Und Descartes in Zusammenhang Mit Der Niederlandischen Reformierten
Theologie Und Philosophie Des 17. Jahrunderts. Leiden: Brill.
Gouhier, Henri. 1954. "La Preuve Ontologique De Descartes." Revue Internationale de Philosophie no. 8:295-303.
Gueroult, Martial. 1955. Nouvelles Réflexions Sur La Preuve Ontologique De Descartes. Paris: Vrin.
———. 1957. "La Vèrité De La Science Et La Vérité De La Chose Dans Les Preuves De L'existence De Dieu." In Cahiers De Royaumont,
Philosophie No. Ii. Descartes, 108-120. Paris: Éditions de Minuit.
Reprinted New York, Garland, 1987.
Suivi d'une Discussion (pp. 121-140.
Humber, James M. 2003. "The Order and Placement of Descartes' Proofs of God in the Meditations." Philosophical
Inquiry.International Quarterly no. 25:41-58.
Kenny, Anthony P. 1969. "Descartes' Ontological Argument." In Fact and Existence, edited by Margolis, Joseph, 18-36. Oxford: Basil
Symposium with Anthony Kenny (pp. 18-36), Norman Malcolm (pp. 36-43); Terence Penelhum (pp. 43-55), comments by Bernard Williams (pp. 55-56)
and Ernest Sosa (pp. 56-58) and reply by Anthony Kenny (pp. 58-62).
Koyré, Alexandre. 1922. Essai Sur L'idée De Dieu Et Les Preuves De Son Existence Chez Descartes. Paris: Ernest Leroux.
Reprinted New York: Galrland, 1987.
Translated in German as: Descartes un die Scholastik, Bonn: Bouvier, 1923.
Miner, Robert C. 2002. "The Dependence of Descartes' Ontological Proof Upon the Doctrine of Causa Sui." Revista Portuguesa de
Filosofia no. 58:873-886.
Can God be the efficient cause of Himself (Causa Sui)? It is well known that Descartes answers this question in the affirmative, but it is
considerably less clear why. The main contention of the essay is that Descartes advances the causa sui doctrine because he came to think that the
ontological proof of Meditation V required it. We argue these contentions through a close analysis of Descartes' initial articulation of causa
sui in response to Caterus, followed by attention to the reformulation of the doctrine in response to the logical objections posed by Arnauld. Our
understanding of causa sui as a move made within the horizon of the ontological proof not only illuminates why Descartes would have defended a
doctrine as conceptually problematic as causa sui, but also provides an alternative to Jean-Luc Marion's view that causa sui constitutes a
third, distinct proof for the existence of God."
Nicolle, Jean-Marie. 2008. "The Mathematical Analogy in the Proof of God's Existence by Descartes." In Mathematics and the Divine. A
Historical Study, edited by Koetsier, Teun and Bergmans, Luc, 387-403. Amsterdam: Elsevier.
Nolan, Lawrence. 2005. "The Ontological Argument as an Exercise in Cartesian Therapy." Canadian Journal of Philosophy no.
I argue that Descartes intended the so-called ontological "argument" as a self-validating intuition, rather than as a formal proof. The
textual evidence for this view is highly compelling, but the strongest support comes from understanding Descartes's diagnosis for why God's existence is not
immediately self-evident to everyone and the method of analysis that he develops for making it self-evident. The larger aim of the paper is to use the
ontological argument as a case study of Descartes's non-formalist theory of deduction and his method of analysis, showing how he conceives the latter as a form
of philosophical therapy."
Nolan, Lawrence, and Nelson, Alan. 2006. "Proofs for the Existence of God." In The Blackwell Guide to Descartes' Meditations, edited
by Gaukroger, Stephen, 104-121. Malden: Blackwell.
We argue that Descartes's theistic proofs in the Meditations are much simpler and straightforward than they are traditionally taken
to be. In particular, we show how the causal argument of the "Third Meditation" depends on the intuitively innocent principle that nothing comes from nothing,
and not on the more controversial principle that the objective reality of an idea must have a cause with at least as much formal reality. We also demonstrate
that the so-called ontological "argument" of the "Fifth Meditation" is best understood not as a formal proof but as an axiom, revealed as self-evident by
Ramadan, Hani. 1990. Une Critique De L'argument Ontologique Dans La Tradition Cartésienne. Berne, New York: P. Lang.
Tweyman, Stanley. 1991. " Deus Ex Cartesio." In René Descartes. Critical Assessments. Vol. Ii, edited by Moyal, Georges
J.D., 329-343. London: Routledge.
Van Inwagen, Margery Naylor. 1969. Descartes' Three Versions of the Ontological Argument, University of Rochester, New York.
Available at UMI Dissertation Express. Order number: 7002919.