Thoughts on the Problem of Evil

It amazes me that people who live in a world filled with child abuse can believe in God. How can the omnibenevolent be reconciled with this? Perhaps it is because we live in such a world that some people need faith in order to deal with these awful facts. As for me, the idea of an all powerful being who could prevent child abuse, but chooses not to, this idea brings me no comfort.

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  4 comments for “Thoughts on the Problem of Evil

  1. June 18, 2015 at 1:21 am

    I like this quote from a “mrozatheist”: “Every human I respect: *would* stop a child from being raped if they could. The god of every believer I know: would not.”

  2. June 18, 2015 at 1:22 am

    If you’re actually interested in some of the ways the Problem of Evil has been dealt with, you could pick up this book. Not that any of the answers will necessarily be any more satisfying for you but, if you’re thinking about it anyway, you may as well think big.
    [And you might actually find something useful in Epictetus… or a few biting critiques to borrow from Schopenhauer.]

  3. June 18, 2015 at 9:21 pm

    It amazes me too. I have had so many debates around this subject and they all say the same things. It’s our fault because we sinned, read the book of revelations, yada yada. It takes some hard core indoctrination to believe that your God is so good that he would let children starve and be murdered just to “send them back home to Him”.

  4. purplesnoopy34
    June 28, 2015 at 7:01 am

    I thought you might appreciate this quote from Brothers Karamazov, which I think is what I was trying to recall earlier at Alcove.

    “Oh, yes, when the mother and the torturer whose hounds tore her son to pieces embrace each other, and all three cry out with tears: ‘Just art thou, O Lord,’ then of course the crown of knowledge will have come and everything will be explained. But here is the hitch: this is what I cannot accept. And while I am on earth, I hasten to take my own measures. You see, Alyosha, it may be well that if I live until that moment, or rise again in order to see it, I myself will perhaps cry out with all the rest, looking at the mother embracing her child’s tormentor: ‘Just art thou, O Lord!’ But I do not want to cry out with them. While there’s still time, I hasten to defend myself against it, and therefore I absolutely renounce all higher harmony. It is not worth one little tear of even that one tormented child who beat her chest with her little fist and prayed to ‘dear God’ in a stinking outhouse with her unredeemed tears! Not worth it, because her tears remained unredeemed… Can they be redeemed by being avenged? But what do I care if they are avenged, what do I care if the tormentors are in hell, what can hell set right here, if these ones have already been tormented? And where is the harmony, if there is hell? I want to forgive, and I want to embrace, I don’t want more suffering. And if the suffering of children goes to make up the sum of suffering needed to buy truth, then I assert beforehand that the whole of truth is not worth such a price.” (Later): “And therefore I hasten to return my ticket.”

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