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If there is a God, why is there evil?

Discuss philosophical questions regarding theism (and atheism), and discuss religion as it relates to philosophy. This includes any philosophical discussions that happen to be about god, gods, or a 'higher power' or the belief of them. This also generally includes philosophical topics about organized or ritualistic mysticism or about organized, common or ritualistic beliefs in the existence of supernatural phenomenon.
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Belinda

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Post Number:#61  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 4:18 am

The basic Christian myth is as follows:

God created the world and its natural laws, and God's laws are everlasting. God's natural laws include that pain and sorrow are permitted.

God however is love, meaning total understanding plus the striving towards the eliminating of sorrow.God therefore became man so he could suffer from the joys and sorrows of temporal life.This personal suffering enabled God to forgive and understand all our joys and sorrows.

Since we are understood and forgiven by God we can start afresh every day unburdened by excessive need or by guilt.

Translating the religious myth into philosophy yields the explanation that the world is a deterministic system,* and once we understand that everything that happens is a necessary event, whether it happens to ourself or to others, we can forgive self and others.(NB this bit is in The Lord's Prayer)

* not a simplistic linear determinism but a wholistic determinism.

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ape

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Post Number:#62  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 8:52 am

Dear Belinda,
Simply awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

May I write the AV: Ape's Version?:)

The basic Christian myth is as follows:

God created the world and its natural laws and their opposites, as per Newton's 3rd law, based on the all-encompassing Love of Love, which LOL is God's only everlasting Law. God's natural laws include that pain and sorrow are permitted and can only be accepted and seen as permitted when that Everlasting LOL is applied to both pain and pleasure, sorrow and joy.

God however is Love, meaning total understanding plus the striving towards the eliminating of The Sorry Hate for sorrow while keeping sorrow for adverse times as per Proverbs 17:17.

God therefore became man so he could suffer IN LOVE from the joys and sorrows of temporal life IN LOVE FOR BOTH and so show us how IN LOVE to do the same for ourselves!!
This Love for personal suffering and pleasure simply re-enabled God to forgive and understand all our joys and sorrows.

Since we are understood and forgiven by God by Him loivng us, we can start afresh every day unburdened by excessive need or by guilt of hating ourselves as guilty, by doing the same for us.

Translating the religious myth into philosophy yields the explanation that the world is a deterministic system,* and once we love and so understand that everything that happens is a necessary event, whether it happens to ourself or to others, we can love and forgive self and others.(NB this bit is in The Lord's Prayer)

* not a simplistic linear determinism but a wholistic determinism.
Amen and amen!:)
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Post Number:#63  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 1:33 pm

Hi Belinda

God however is love, meaning total understanding plus the striving towards the eliminating of sorrow.God therefore became man so he could suffer from the joys and sorrows of temporal life.This personal suffering enabled God to forgive and understand all our joys and sorrows.


I say this respectfully but this seems more like a myth about Christianity rather than a Christian myth.

We may need experiential knowledge but to think that an ignorant supreme being outside of time and space must take human form in order to experience the human condition and forgive it can only mean a very weak and ignorant god which is contradictory to the Christian God concept as the source of creation outside of time and space.
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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Post Number:#64  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 4:33 pm

Nick_A wrote:Hi Belinda

God however is love, meaning total understanding plus the striving towards the eliminating of sorrow.God therefore became man so he could suffer from the joys and sorrows of temporal life.This personal suffering enabled God to forgive and understand all our joys and sorrows.


I say this respectfully but this seems more like a myth about Christianity rather than a Christian myth.

We may need experiential knowledge but to think that an ignorant supreme being outside of time and space must take human form in order to experience the human condition and forgive it can only mean a very weak and ignorant god which is contradictory to the Christian God concept as the source of creation outside of time and space.

Nick. XLNT Kudos for the Respectful bit!

So extend it to the weak and ignorant and contras>
You can only say what you wrote there in Hate of yourself as ignorant and weak and contradictory!
Follow?
Here is WS for encouragement:
"He that of greatest works is finisher
Oft does them by the weakest minister:
So holy writ in babes hath judgment shown,
When judges have been babes; great floods have flown
From simple sources, and great seas have dried
When miracles have by the greatest been denied.
Oft expectation fails and most oft there
Where most it promises, and oft it hits
Where hope is coldest and despair most fits."
All's Well That Ends Well [II, 1]
Isn't WS awesome?

Btw, thanks for those da Vinci, rwe and ae quotes under separate cover!:)
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Post Number:#65  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 5:00 pm

America wrote:When the last eagle flies
Over the last crumbling mountain
And the last lion roars
At the last dusty fountain
In the shadow of the forest
Though she may be old and worn
They will stare unbelieving
At the Last Unicorn

When the first breath of winter
Throught the flowers is icing
And you look to the north
And a pale moon is rising
And it seems like all is dying
And would leave the world to mourn
In the distance hear her laughter
It's the Last Unicorn
I'm alive... I'm alive

When the last moon is cast
Over the last star of morning
And the future is past
Without even a last desparate warning
Then look into the sky where through
The cloudes a path is formed
Look and see her how she sparkles
It's the Last Unicorn
I'm alive... I'm alive.


There is the possibility of goodness in all as well as evil, but they do not exist untill we call upon them.

(The poem/Song was to break up the monotony, I cry every time I hear the song.)
Who I Am Is What I Am
What I Am Is Why I Am
Why I Am IS Who I Am...

The question you should be asking is...who are you?
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whitetrshsoldier

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Post Number:#66  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 5:10 pm

Here's a simple answer, from Family Guy:

Peter wrote:I want to thank God. I want to thank the Lord God because It is really not up to me, it is up to him. And I want to thank the devil too because, you know, that's why God is there. He's out there minding the fence to make sure that guy never comes back. You know if it weren't for the devil God would probably go insane and blow his brains out from boredom


And that's pretty much why god allows there to be evil. 8) :lol:
"I'm sorry if I hurt your feelings! I'm obviously just insecure with the ineptitudes of my logic and rational faculties. Forgive me - I'm a "lost soul", blinded by my "ignorant belief" that there's such a thing as reality and truth in the world"
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Post Number:#67  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 7:14 pm

ape wrote:
Nick_A wrote:Hi Belinda

God however is love, meaning total understanding plus the striving towards the eliminating of sorrow.God therefore became man so he could suffer from the joys and sorrows of temporal life.This personal suffering enabled God to forgive and understand all our joys and sorrows.


I say this respectfully but this seems more like a myth about Christianity rather than a Christian myth.

We may need experiential knowledge but to think that an ignorant supreme being outside of time and space must take human form in order to experience the human condition and forgive it can only mean a very weak and ignorant god which is contradictory to the Christian God concept as the source of creation outside of time and space.

Nick. XLNT Kudos for the Respectful bit!

So extend it to the weak and ignorant and contras>
You can only say what you wrote there in Hate of yourself as ignorant and weak and contradictory!
Follow?
Here is WS for encouragement:
"He that of greatest works is finisher
Oft does them by the weakest minister:
So holy writ in babes hath judgment shown,
When judges have been babes; great floods have flown
From simple sources, and great seas have dried
When miracles have by the greatest been denied.
Oft expectation fails and most oft there
Where most it promises, and oft it hits
Where hope is coldest and despair most fits."
All's Well That Ends Well [II, 1]
Isn't WS awesome?

Btw, thanks for those da Vinci, rwe and ae quotes under separate cover!:)


It's because of you that I was bitten by and aristocratic French Poodle today.

I was walking down the street and this animal looked at me in disdain and barked at me. I told it that the only reason it is barking was because it didn't love itself. It blinked in disbelief and uttered a warning growl. I told it that if it hates itself how can it love me so by loving me it can hate itself and allow this hatred to become hatred for me so that it can experience self love. At that point it lost its aristocrasy and snapped at me.

You posted fine quotes but I wish you would have quoted why God doesn't pay my taxes. Is it a lack of love?
Man would like to be an egoist and cannot. This is the most striking characteristic of his wretchedness and the source of his greatness." Simone Weil....Gravity and Grace
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ape

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Post Number:#68  PostJune 23rd, 2009, 8:36 pm

[quote="Nick_A"]
It's because of you that I was bitten by and aristocratic French Poodle today.
Ape: I am a big dog now with broad shoulders, and so can take the blame!:)
Nick:
I was walking down the street and this animal looked at me in disdain and barked at me.
Ape: First lesson on dog-training is: Love the dog by loving self as dog.
Nick: I told it that the only reason it is barking was because it didn't love itself.
Ape: You shd have barked back in Love of then said what you said in Love!
Nick: It blinked in disbelief and uttered a warning growl.
Ape: Then you shd've have let the dog in you out and growled back in Love, mirroring it!
Nick:I told it that if it hates itself how can it love me so by loving me it can hate itself and allow this hatred to become hatred for me so that it can experience self love.
Ape: No wonder the dog snapped at those words!
What you meant to say in Doggish was:
If you hate yourself, big boy, how can you love me and so bark at me in Love? First love yourself as man, so that you can love me as you! And by loving me as man and as dog, tou teach me to love me as man and dog and so love you as me!
You can't hate yourself as me which allows that hatred to automatically become hatred for me as you! So by loving you as dog and as man and all doggish words and theier opposites, you can experience self love!
If you had said that, that frenchie poodle wd have been wagging its tail and you wd have had a whale, er, poodle of a tale of tails to tell!
Nick: At that point it lost its aristocrasy and snapped at me.
Ape: Any human wd have done the same thing at your penumbraic elucidation of Love! Much more a mere dog, aretesocratic notwithstanding!:)
Nick:
You posted fine quotes but I wish you would have quoted why God doesn't pay my taxes. Is it a lack of love?
Ape: He does pay YOU full taxes, excise and customs, of 100% Love in currency and in gold coin, just for being there!
That's found in Romans 13:
7Render therefore to all their dues:
tribute to whom tribute is due;
custom to whom custom;
fear to whom fear;
Honour to whom Honour.  
8Owe no man any thing, but to love one another:
for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
Even poodles get paid, plus gods and dogd are man's best friend!:)
Now I want to ask you one question:
Who let the dog out?;)
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Belinda

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Post Number:#69  PostJune 24th, 2009, 4:38 am

Nick_A explanatory myths are not supposed to be understood so literally. Explanatory myths are 'what-if ' stories.

We may need experiential knowledge but to think that an ignorant supreme being outside of time and space must take human form in order to experience the human condition and forgive it can only mean a very weak and ignorant god which is contradictory to the Christian God concept as the source of creation outside of time and space.
(Nick_A)

The way to interpret the myth is to substitute necessity for the creator God character, who if you think about it stands for strongly deterministic 'natural law' in all the monotheists' stories, excepting the one that tags Free Will For Humans on as an afterthought.

The basic myth explains how love, as understanding, reason and empathy, that transcend our basic passions allows us humans to have what freedom as is possible.

Re: 'An ignorant supreme being' is not a version of God that I am on about. Necessity is neither ignorant nor wise, it is existence itself. God is belittled if thought to be nothing but a supreme being; a supreme being is nothing but a very exalted temporal being. God is existence itself, that is why God is said to be eternal, not temporal.
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Re: If there is a God, why is there evil?

Post Number:#70  PostAugust 7th, 2009, 1:33 pm

Floyd wrote:If there is a God, why is there evil? Why do bad things happen to good people? Why is there so much needless suffering in the world, from natural disasters and such? Why would a loving God do this?


You have to understand what\who God is.

God is the spirit of Truth and Righteousness. We are the hands of God. All God can do is tell us what is right. It is up to us to decide to do what is right or not. That is why there is evil in the world. because we do it, not God.

Natural disasters are not evil. there is no "intent" that is necessary to do evil. They are unfortunate, they are harmful, but not evil.
Dieing is a part of life, without death the world would become overpopulated and unable to provide enough room or food for all. By dieing we allow room for babies to be born and grow from laughing children to helpful adults.

All God does is tell us "do good". And of course God inspires us and gives us faith and strength to do that good.

God Bless You, always.
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Re: If there is a God, why is there evil?

Post Number:#71  PostAugust 7th, 2009, 4:11 pm

james1951 wrote:All God does is tell us "do good". And of course God inspires us and gives us faith and strength to do that good.

God Bless You, always.

Hi James 1951!
But isn't good determined by the attitude or spirit of truth IN which we do good?
So isn't evil determined by the attitude or spirit of lying IN which we do goo?
Like this:
Here is the Phar doing GOOD in the evil spirit of HATE for the evil: That evil spirit made his good evil.
Luke 18:
9And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others [who were evil or unrighteous or wrong]:

10Two men went up into the temple to pray;
the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

11The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

12I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

13And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

14I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Here is God:
Isaiah 45:
7I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

How does God do evil? In Love or in Hate?
Job 42:
11Then came there unto him all his brethren, and all his sisters, and all they that had been of his acquaintance before, and did eat bread with him in his house: and they bemoaned him, and comforted him over all the evil that the LORD had brought upon him: every man also gave him a piece of money, and every one an earring of gold.
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Re: If there is a God, why is there evil?

Post Number:#72  PostAugust 14th, 2009, 12:53 pm

ape wrote:
james1951 wrote:All God does is tell us "do good". And of course God inspires us and gives us faith and strength to do that good.

God Bless You, always.

Hi James 1951!
But isn't good determined by the attitude or spirit of truth IN which we do good?
So isn't evil determined by the attitude or spirit of lying IN which we do goo?
Like this:
Here is the Phar doing GOOD in the evil spirit of HATE for the evil: That evil spirit made his good evil.
Luke 18:
9And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others [who were evil or unrighteous or wrong]:

10Two men went up into the temple to pray;
the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

11The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

12I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

13And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

14I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Here is God:
Isaiah 45:
7I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

How does God do evil? In Love or in Hate?
Job 42:
11Then came there unto him all his brethren, and all his sisters, and all they that had been of his acquaintance before, and did eat bread with him in his house: and they bemoaned him, and comforted him over all the evil that the LORD had brought upon him: every man also gave him a piece of money, and every one an earring of gold.


Just because the Pharisee claimed to be good does not mean he was.
It is said our judgement of "goodness" is as filthy rags next to what god judges as good, because Gid sees the motive, not just the actions. The same actions can have good or evil motives.
Give a child a treat to - lure him for evil intent
Give a child a treat to - reward good effort

Is giving the child a treat good or evil? You see good and evil lies in the intent not the activity.

To harm or deceive others for self promotion or gratification may not really be a good activity.
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Post Number:#73  PostAugust 14th, 2009, 1:14 pm

God does not "allow" evil! It is the fall of man from which evil is manifest here on earth.

I understand when someone develops an argument for debate as to what constitutes evil but when evil is ascribed by its relation to Christian precepts then it should be considered how those precepts are manifest.

Evil has no existence on its own so therefore evil is the absence of good. In relation to the Christian view of God we are not robots we have "free will" and that will is manifest by its relationship to good and/or evil. Without evil man would worship God out of obligation not from a self originated and developed sense of love and joy.

It is free will that necessitates "evil" and by what other rational would a loving God truly show his love but by creating that which is the antithesis of His being so that He may inspire humanity to excel to the spirit of Gods Will.
When everyone looks to better their own future then the future will be better for everyone.

An explanation of cause is not a justification by reason.
C. S. Lewis

Fight the illusion!
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Re: If there is a God, why is there evil?

Post Number:#74  PostAugust 14th, 2009, 2:49 pm

Floyd wrote:If there is a God, why is there evil? Why do bad things happen to good people? Why is there so much needless suffering in the world, from natural disasters and such? Why would a loving God do this?


An evil will demonish the world.

Things happen as always, not to blame on the God.
There are concepts behind all these.
The God does not intend to hurt you, if you were.

The God is always, but changing, like us.

If a reform is needed, the world need to be changed by the young.

Rebellions in youth do not necessary turned out to be revolts.

Reforms of the world by changing our minds and the others'.

Up and Down, as always.
The worst may not yet be.
The best is not always.

Comfort not by others.
The day you look back, you will have an answer.

Don't make yourself regret.

May the God be with you.

Teru
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Post Number:#75  PostAugust 17th, 2009, 9:14 pm

I argue against free will. I've never known a human being that can choose not to do evil (and I don't mean singular acts, because I myself have chosen to tell the truth or not to steal) but to do all good is impossible and i guess to do all evil is impossible, because somehow good could come out of evil or evil out of the good you've done.

Intention is very important, i do agree.

We being born into sin, being born sinful... We have no free will, we can't choose. Has anyone accepted Jesus, who supposedly gives power over sin, and never sinned again? I tell you, I do not wish to sin, but my very existence is sin.. my society prevents me from any chance. All is vanity.

Yes I'm a cry baby.

Since my intention is to follow God, but I am to weak....does that dimiss me. Is my choice to do good made, but my inability to do so excusable?
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