AD2000 - a journal of religious opinionAD Books
Ask a Question
View Cart
Search AD2000: author: full text:  
AD2000 - a journal of religious opinion
Find a Book:

AD2000 Home
Article Index
About AD2000
Contact Us
Email Updates


Add Me
Remove Me

Subscriber Access:

Enter the Internet Access Key from your mailing label here for full access!


The Self Evident Proof, by Richard Kouchoo

Bookmark and Share

 Contents - Mar 2003AD2000 March 2003 - Buy a copy now
Editorial: War in Iraq? Questions to be considered - Peter Westmore
Sydney Archdiocese RE test: behind one school's success story - Michael Gilchrist
News: The Church Around the World - AD2000
Ten years on former Anglicans enrich Church - Fr Peter Geldard
Vatican tells politicians: Don't hide your light - Michael Casanova
Good priest, bad priest - my faith remains - Frank Mobbs
Religious faith and modern culture: responding to a secular critic - Bill Muehlenberg
Liturgy: The Mass is the same sacrifice as the Cross - Msgr. Peter J. Elliott
New Age ideas: how Catholics should respond - Fr Peter Joseph
The media and evangelisation - Moira Kirkwood
Letters: Brisbane Synod (letter) - John F. Nolan
Letters: 'Partner' or spouse? (letter) - Peter Hannigan
Letters: Women's Commission (letter) - Leon Voesenek
Letters: Church renovation (letter) - T.E. Geraghty
Letters: Government proposals (letter) - Dr Arnold Jago
Letters: Last things (letter) - Kevin McManus
Letters: New springtime (letter) - Errol P. Duke
Letters: Apostolate (letter) - Barry O'Brien
Letters: Catholic websites (letter) - John Carroll
Letters: Third rite (letter) - Norm Power
Letters: Invalid (letter) - Maria Lossberg
Letters: New Age? (letter) - Dr Lance Eccles
Letters: Accountability (letter) - John Leach
Letters: Infallible teaching (letter) - Peter Howard
Poetry: From Tradition (For my mother) - Andrew Huntley
Books: Life's Worth: The Case against Assisted Suicide, by Arthur Dyck - Bill Muehlenberg (reviewer)
Books: Human Cloning And Human Dignity: Report of the President's Council on Bioethics - Bill Muehlenberg (reviewer)
Books: The Self Evident Proof, by Richard Kouchoo - Catherine Sheehan (reviewer)
Books: The Latest from AD Books
Reflection: Lenten self-denial - at the very heart of our lives with Christ - Fr F.E. Burns

by Richard Kouchoo

(Protea Publishing, USA, 2002, 120pp, US$14.98. Available from

Richard Kouchoo claims that knowledge of the existence of God is possible through simple reasoning and logic. The main thrust of his argument is that since there is objective truth it follows that there is a moral law. As moral laws are "mind commands" they must have been created by a personal intellect, which we would call God.

In order to establish his first proposition that truth exists, Kouchoo demonstrates the erroneous and self-contradictory nature of the arguments for agnosticism and relativism. His treatment of these two philosophies is admirably concise and clear, showing the absolute irrationality of subscribing to their arguments.

Using a conversational style between a fictional believer and an unbeliever, Kouchoo presents an example of how to deal with people who refuse to admit the existence of truth. In fact, by claiming that there is no such thing as the truth, the unbeliever is effectively proving that it does exist.

When a relativist claims "there is no such thing as absolute truth", one can respond: "Is that absolutely true?". To the agnostic who claims that "we cannot know anything", the appropriate reply is: "Do you know that for sure?". They are themselves making absolute claims and stating something that they believe to be objectively true. The existence of truth is therefore inescapable and undeniable.

The self-referential style of these philosophies is their great undoing at the most basic level. It is disturbing, when faced with the obvious logical errors involved in relativism and agnosticism, to note nevertheless the great influence such thinking has had in our higher education institutions in the Western world.

Other absurdities used by those trying to deny the existence of objective truth are demonstrated in the book. For example, Bishop John Selby Spong is quoted as claiming that "no word is objective" and "words are never the truth". But as Kouchoo points out, Bishop Spong has used words to convey this to us, so should we believe what he says?

Moral law

Through objective truth we come to know that some things are good and some are bad, which in turn leads us to know that there is a moral law, e.g., we know innately that "murder is wrong". Such natural laws are "mind laws", meaning that they refer to values and morality and therefore could only have been produced by a personal intellect. This brings us to the existence of God, the mind from which the moral law originated.

The Self Evident Proof would make ideal reading for any philosophy student, serving as a stimulant for informed discussion. It is also a valuable resource for anyone wanting to know how best to contend with those rejecting the existence of objective truth.

Kouchoo presents his arguments in easy-to-understand language and in 'bite size' morsels, chapter by chapter, making them accessible to anyone whether a student of philosophy or not. His use of the conversational technique is helpful in conveying the arguments and allowing the reader to absorb them. He also defines key philosophical terms and introduces the arguments of major philosophers such as Augustine, Aquinas, Hume and Kant.

Some may find the style somewhat repetitive in places but it certainly drives home the theme of the reality of objective truth and moral law, which inevitably points towards the existence of God.

Catherine Sheehan is a Melbourne Catholic writer who is completing her Arts degree at Monash University.

Bookmark and Share

Reprinted from AD2000 Vol 16 No 2 (March 2003), p. 18

Page design and automation by
Umbria Associates Pty Ltd © 2001-2004