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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james1951
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Post by james1951 » August 20th, 2009, 10:41 am

nameless wrote:
Belinda wrote:Presumably if God is all-powerful he could do anything including making a world devoid of suffering.Since there is no known world that is devoid of suffering then there is no such entity as an all-powerful God.
Why is it that 'suffering' and 'pain' are 'errors' or 'faults' or 'wrong' or 'evil' or 'mistakes'?
This 'god' must operate on particular peoples egoic whims?
There is nothing 'imperfect' in pain or suffering. It's just 'uncomfortable', and there's nothing imperfect about discomfort, either!
My understanding is that pain is commonly a signal that there is something wrong or amiss. It is a signal to stop doing the things causing the pain as it is damaging your body for example. Take your hand out of the fire. Set and stablize the broken bone so that it heals. Find a way to deal with the situation that is causing you stress and making life unpleasant.

Evil is another issue. When someone does something that causes you pain and makes you uncomfortable, that is "wrong" IMHO. Thus the code for a doctor is do no harm and the code for those who are spiritually minded is do no harm.

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 10:45 am

nameless wrote:
Belinda wrote:Presumably if God is all-powerful he could do anything including making a world devoid of suffering.Since there is no known world that is devoid of suffering then there is no such entity as an all-powerful God.
Why is it that 'suffering' and 'pain' are 'errors' or 'faults' or 'wrong' or 'evil' or 'mistakes'?
This 'god' must operate on particular peoples egoic whims?
There is nothing 'imperfect' in pain or suffering. It's just 'uncomfortable', and there's nothing imperfect about discomfort, either!
Nameless!
Xlnt!
Pain is good since it tells us when something else is wrong and NOT right!
Plus we can make champagne out of it and of course, "No pain, no gain.'
Plus we have people named payne as in stewart and John payne! Not to mention Spain!:)

And imperfection is perfect: imperfection makes perfection perfect! Perfection is imperfect without imperfection!:)
2 Corinthians 12:
9And he said unto me,
My grace/My Love is sufficient for thee: for my strength/my perfection is made perfect in weakness/in imperfection.
Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power/firmity of Christ may rest upon me.

10Therefore I take pleasure
in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities,
in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak/imperfect, then am I strong/perfect.
Last edited by ape on August 20th, 2009, 10:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

james1951
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Post by james1951 » August 20th, 2009, 10:48 am

Belinda wrote:
You've made the fallacy of composition; just because there is evil in the world does not mean the world is evil.
I have not.

Presumably if God is all-powerful he could do anything including making a world devoid of suffering.Since there is no known world that is devoid of suffering then there is no such entity as an all-powerful God.
I am glad you phrased it as "no "known" world. Just because you do not know of one does not mean that one does not exist.

It is interesting however that much of the goodness Jesus taught involved easing suffering. If we have no suffering how do we express ourlove. If no one hungers or thirsts who is there to give drink and food to? WHo is there to comfort in sickness or in prison?

But when we have given that love then the suffering ceases. Love is the condition of keeping the suffering at bey. With perfect love there is nom suffering. We are the hands of God. We are given the gift of life the ability to find our own happiness by saving others from suffering.

The perfect world will be when there is so much love that none of us suffer but all attend to each other in such detail as to prevent the suffering before it occurs.

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 10:51 am

james1951 wrote:
Belinda wrote: I have not.

Presumably if God is all-powerful he could do anything including making a world devoid of suffering.Since there is no known world that is devoid of suffering then there is no such entity as an all-powerful God.
I am glad you phrased it as "no "known" world. Just because you do not know of one does not mean that one does not exist.

It is interesting however that much of the goodness Jesus taught involved easing suffering. If we have no suffering how do we express ourlove. If no one hungers or thirsts who is there to give drink and food to? WHo is there to comfort in sickness or in prison?

But when we have given that love then the suffering ceases. Love is the condition of keeping the suffering at bey. With perfect love there is nom suffering. We are the hands of God. We are given the gift of life the ability to find our own happiness by saving others from suffering.

The perfect world will be when there is so much love that none of us suffer but all attend to each other in such detail as to prevent the suffering before it occurs.
Hi James!
Just sharing!
God can NOT make pleasure without pain and suffering IF he was us or any life to be viable because without pain or suffering we wd not know when we were sick!
If I cd not suffer pain, I wd only know my fingers were burnt off when I smelled my burning flesh!
So the only thing we need to eliminate is the HATE of pain or suffering!
See?
That Hate of suffering is what makes the suffering double and so unbearable when I am suffering, and makes it unbearable even when I am JUST THINKING of it!
Last edited by ape on August 20th, 2009, 11:46 am, edited 1 time in total.

james1951
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Post by james1951 » August 20th, 2009, 11:01 am

ape wrote:
james1951 wrote: I am glad you phrased it as "no "known" world. Just because you do not know of one does not mean that one does not exist.

It is interesting however that much of the goodness Jesus taught involved easing suffering. If we have no suffering how do we express ourlove. If no one hungers or thirsts who is there to give drink and food to? WHo is there to comfort in sickness or in prison?

But when we have given that love then the suffering ceases. Love is the condition of keeping the suffering at bey. With perfect love there is nom suffering. We are the hands of God. We are given the gift of life the ability to find our own happiness by saving others from suffering.

The perfect world will be when there is so much love that none of us suffer but all attend to each other in such detail as to prevent the suffering before it occurs.
Hi James!
Just sharing!
God can NOT make pleasure without pain and suffering because without pain we wd not know when we were sick!
See?
I have to disagree on this as I was writing my last message I realized that indeed the pleasure comes from the absense of suffering, the absense of suffering comes from loving each other. It is the lack of love that causes the suffering. That is our choice to allow suffering or to prevent suffering.

There are people in this world who have so much food and drink and medicine that they could never use it all. Why then do they choose to horde it and not provide wells and farm equipment to ease the suffering of those who have no food. We could produce medicine at a fraction of the cost we do and yet we do not make enough to ease the suffering of those who cannot give us money.

Will the time come when the masses demand that those who hourde all the wealth of food and medicine and actually cause suffering to keep their power, release that wealth to the entire world? Or do we have to wait for the destruction of the world before those power mongers finally learn it really isnt worth the suffering they cause to keep their power?

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 1:31 pm

James1951:I have to disagree on this as I was writing my last message I realized that indeed the pleasure comes from the absense of suffering, the absense of suffering comes from loving each other.
ape: Yes! Seems we agree,--to me!;)
James: It is the lack of love that causes the suffering.
ape: Yes!
James: That is our choice to allow suffering or to prevent suffering.
ape: Yes, as given or not given by God! John 6:44.
James: There are people in this world who have so much food and drink and medicine that they could never use it all. Why then do they choose to horde it and not provide wells and farm equipment to ease the suffering of those who have no food.
ape: Because they hate themselves as hungry and poor and sick and so must be full and rich and well to love self and must keep that food and riches and meds coming by all and any means necessary to love self and so can never get enough of food or riches! Plus they hate the hungry and the poor---as themeselves!!
James: We could produce medicine at a fraction of the cost we do and yet we do not make enough to ease the suffering of those who cannot give us money.
ape: Because of the Hate of self by the full and the Hate of self by the empty! When the poor who hate themselves as hungry and weak are given money to buy food, guess what they buy? Guns! Why? Because a lean hungry STRONG-ARMED man gets more Love and Respect than a fat satisfied UNARMED weak man!
So the problem of Hate is on both sides!
Why do you think there is so much black-on-black crime? Same reason: Hate of self as poor and white and weak!
James:
Will the time come when the masses demand that those who hourde all the wealth of food and medicine and actually cause suffering to keep their power, release that wealth to the entire world?
ape: That FORCE will never work! But the rich will do it WILLINGLY when shown first to love self as poor!
JAMES: Or do we have to wait for the destruction of the world before those power mongers finally learn it really isnt worth the suffering they cause to keep their power?
ape: No, not for the destruction of the world, but for the destruction of HATE of self and of others as self in the world! People only share with who they first love.
People only take a handout from people they first love.
Enjoy:
"If the first 7 editions of my introductory text on economics managed to omit 'Love" from the index, why cannot the 8th let well enough alone? It is not as if I have suddenly gone soft in the head. Rather it is a case of having, belatedly, come clear in the head: to explain the scientific facts that are out there to be explained, had Love never existed we should have had to invent it."
Paul Samuelson, 12.29.1969 in Economics From The Heart.

"The 1920’s through the 1950’s were economies of the hand.
The 1970’s through the 1990’s were economics of the head.
The 2000’s through 2020’s will be economies of the heart."
Vlachav Havel

"The fundamentals of the whole economic condition are divine in nature and are associated with the world of the heart and spirit.
Hearts must be so cemented together,
Love must become so dominant
that the rich shall most willingly extend assistance to the poor and take steps to establish these economic adjustments permanently.
If it is accomplished in this way of Love, it will be most praiseworthy because then it will be for the sake of God and in the pathway of His service.
For example, it will be as if the rich inhabitants of a city should say,
"It is neither just nor lawful that we should possess great wealth while there is abject poverty in this community,"
and then willingly give their wealth to the poor, retaining only as much as will enable them to live comfortably.
Strive, therefore, to create Love in the hearts in order that they may become glowing and radiant.
When that Love is shining, it will permeate other hearts even as this electric light illumines its surroundings.
When The Love of God is established, everything else will be realized.
This Love is the true foundation of all economics.
Reflect upon it.
Endeavor to become the cause of the attraction of souls rather than to enforce minds.
Manifest true economics to the people.
Show what Love is, what kindness is, what true severance is and generosity.
This is the important thing for you to do.
Economic questions will not attract hearts.
The Love of God alone will attract them.
Economic questions are most interesting; but the power which moves, controls and attracts the hearts of men is The Love of God.
`Abdu'l-Baha: Promulgation of Universal Peace, pages 238-239, 7.23.1912

boagie
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Post by boagie » August 20th, 2009, 1:49 pm

A little reference material on evil.


http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_slav.htm

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 2:08 pm

boagie wrote:A little reference material on evil.
http://www.religioustolerance.org/chr_slav.htm
A little reference material elucidated in Love!:)
Please remember to not ever read it literally, but to only always read it in Love and so metaphorically---like this:

Slavery was established by decree of Almighty God IN LOVE OF MASTERS AND SLAVES, HUSBANDS AND WIVES, PARENTS AND CHILDREN, ADULTS AND KIDS, ALL WORDS AND THEIR OPPOSITES...it is sanctioned IN LOVE OF ALL OPPOSITES in the Bible, in both Testaments, from Genesis to Revelation...it has existed in all ages, has been found among the people of the highest civilization, and in nations of the highest proficiency in the arts right up to 2009 in the USA.

The right of holding slaves is clearly established in the Holy Scriptures, both by precept and example, IN LOVE OF THE MASTER AND THE SLAVE AS IN MARRIAGE OR IN ANY LOVE RELATIONSHIP.

I give WITH LOVE FOR MY DAUGHTER AS A SLAVE AND MASTER my daughter, Joyce Falkner, present wife of John Falkner, of the county of Fayette and State of Virginia, a negro girl by name of Gemima otherwise called Mima. I give her IN LOVE to the above Joyce together with said Mima's increase forever and for the only use of the said Joyce, to will and dispose of as to her seemeth fit, hereby revoking all other claims of right or title to the said Gemima alias Mima of her increase forever. AND SO GIVE MY DAUGHTER AS SLAVE AND MASTER TO GEMINA AS MASTER AND SLAVE OF MY DTR SINCE GEMINA WITHOUT LOVE CAN EASILY POISON MY DTR.

...the campaign to end slavery in the United States was for many years largely the work of a small number of Christians who opposed slavery on explicitly religious grounds IN HATE OF SLAVERY RATHER THAN IN LOVE OF SLAVERY SO THAT MENTAL AND ATTITUDINAL SLAVERY TO HATRED STILL REMAINED WITH POSITIONS REVERSED, and who at the time were regularly condemned IN HATE as fanatical zealots, bent (as indeed they IN HATE were) on imposing their religiously based views regarding this particular issue on all those who disagreed...WHICH IS WHY WE STILL HAVE HATRED AND THUS SLAVERY IN HATRED IN THE US UP TO TODAY 2009.
Redemption Song [from Mental Slavery]: Bob Marley
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MJHgMD1S ... re=related
"Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery;
None but ourselves can free our minds.
Have no fear for atomic energy,
cause none of them can stop the time.
How long shall they kill our prophets,
While we stand aside and look? ooh!
Some say its just a part of it:
Weve got to fulfil de book."

The Christian church's main justification of the concept of slavery was WRONGLY AND UNRIGHTEOUSLY based on HATRED FOR THE CURSED AND CURSERS AND THE CURSED the "curse of Ham" which appears in the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament) in Genesis 9:25-27 WHICH GOD MEANT IN LOVE SINCE HE TURNS ALL CURSES IN TO BLESSINGS AND SINCE ALL CURSES ARE BLESSINGS IN DISGUISE.

"Cursed be Canaan IN LOVE OF BLESSINGS & CURSES AND IN LOVE OF THE BLESSED AND THE CURSED! The lowest of slaves will he be IN LOVE to his brothers SO THAT LIKE JOSEPH WHO WAS A SLAVE TO HIS BROS AND THE EGYPTIANS UNTIL HE BECAME PRIME MINISTER OF EGYPT AND MASTER IN LOVE OF THE EGYPTIANS AND OF THOSE SAME BROS WHO THEN BECAME HIS LOVE-SLAVES!
See Genesis 39-50.
He also said,
'Blessed be the Lord, the God of Shem, WHICH GOD LOVES HIMSELF AS MASTER AND AS SLAVE, AS BLESSED AND AS CURSED AND SO LOVES MASTERS AND SLAVES AS HIMSELF! May Canaan be the slave IN LOVE of Shem AS MASTER SO THAT CANAAN WILL BE MASTER IN LOVE OF SHEM, WITH SHEM ALSO PLAYING BOTH PARTS IN LOVE.

I wrote the above, in Love of myself as slave and as master, as a Civil-SERVANT or Civil-SLAVE for the benefit of ALL my masters on this forum to help all teach themselves how to be slaves to me--like I let my wife master&rule me to show her how to let me master&rule her!!:)
Hmmmm
Hint!:)
Last edited by ape on August 20th, 2009, 2:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Post by rationalist griggsy » August 20th, 2009, 2:23 pm

The problem of Heaven and William Rowe's the evidential argument from evil both reveal the sterility of all theodicies: no recompense in Heaven validates all the unrequited evils here!
The problem of Heaven presents theists as being very inconsistent, and this plea for consistency in not one of little minds. With David Ramsay Steele, one asks why if there is free will in Heaven and a guarantee for no doing wrong, then it would be consistent for the same here!
The free wil1 and soul-building arguments are mere scams! Hick, advanced theologian, guesses that there might be heavenly virtues akin to earthly ones. Why, then not be consistent and wonder why not here?
Richard Swinburne alleges that we naturalists overlook the values of free will and overemphasize the evil. Nay, that kind of rebuttal blasphemes reason and- humanity! Nay, he is not a serious person with that empty excuse. We are the serious ones.
Steele makes this pellucid argument in " Explaining Atheism: from Folly to Philosophy." My friend Graham Robert Oppy expatiates on it in " Arguments about God." Michael Martin briefly mentions it in ' Atheism, Morality and Meaning." Still another author uses it. And Fr. Meslier uses it.
That is a form of the logical problem of evil.
The evidential form is that of maintaining that the evils present an overwhelming case themselves against God.Rowe is ever developing it, and Nick Trakakis, tentative theist, expatiates on it in his new book.
The Bible adds to the problem of evil! The ideas of the Atonement and Hell worsen some theists' case! :wink: :roll:

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 2:31 pm

rationalist wrote: The Bible adds to the problem of evil! The ideas of the Atonement and Hell worsen some theists' case! :wink: :roll: [/b]
Hi rationalist!
That's true only if you hate yourself as evil rather than love yourself as good and evil, and read the Bible in Hate of evil.
That makes the real evil any Hate of yourself as evil.

Do you love yourself as evil?
Do you love yourself as good?
Can you separate good from evil?
Do you love you are your own worse enemy and as you own best friend?

"Good and evil grow up together and are bound in an equilibrium that cannot be sundered. The most we can do is try to tilt the equilibrium toward the good." Alvin Toffler.

Matthew 5:43-48 Ye have heard that it hath been said,
Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
44But I say unto you, Love your [friends and] enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
45That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
46For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
47And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?
48Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

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whitetrshsoldier
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Post by whitetrshsoldier » August 20th, 2009, 4:11 pm

I don't understand why this is difficult for people to grasp. BOAGIE PLEASE HELP!

According to you all, god 'CREATED' EVERYTHING, right people? He is ALL-POWERFUL [OMNIPOTENT], and ALL-KNOWING. If he KNOWS EVERYTHING, then he KNEW BEFORE he 'created' us that he was condemning us IN CREATION to ETERNAL DAMNATION!!!

If that is not evil, I do not know what is! And if god is evil, what is good?

p.s. If you say he created us with "free will" and didn't know, then he's not all-knowing or all-powerful, and that's one pathetic god. You can worship him if you wish, but I'd say he's more like just a regular person.

p.p.s. If you say he created us with "free will" and is still all-powerful, then he basically set us up by creating us with a temptation he knew was more powerful than our will. And that, also, is pretty f#$king sadistic!!!
"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"

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 4:51 pm

whitetrshsoldier wrote:
According to you all, god 'CREATED' EVERYTHING, right people? He is ALL-POWERFUL [OMNIPOTENT], and ALL-KNOWING. If he KNOWS EVERYTHING, then he KNEW BEFORE he 'created' us that he was condemning us IN CREATION to ETERNAL DAMNATION!!!

If that is not evil, I do not know what is! And if god is evil, what is good?
Hi WTS!
With the same evidence as you mention above, I come to the opposite conclusion:
Because he LOVES EVERYTHING, then he KNEW BEFORE he 'created' us that he was justifying us IN CREATION to ETERNAL SALVATION!!!

If that is not GOOD, I do not know what is! And if God is GOOD, what is EVIL?

"Human knowledge must be understood to be loved, but divine knowledge must be loved to be understood." Blaise Pascal.
You only come to your conclusion because I think that you are using the Evil of Hatred to hate evil.
Just to check:
Do you love yourself as evil?
Do you love evil?
Do you love evil people?
Do you love to do evil?

I only come to my conclusion because I am using the GOOD of Love to love good and to love, especially, evil.
Love of good and evil makes good of evil, better of good, and best of better.

Hate of evil makes evil of good, worse of bad and worst of worse.

"It is good to see ourselves as others see us. Try as we may, we are never able to know ourselves fully as we are, especially the evil side of us.
This we can do only if we are not angry [in Hate of evil] with our critics but will take in good heart whatever [evil] they might have to say."
MKG


"575. All things work together for good to the elect [who love all good and love especially all evil things], even the obscurities of Scripture; for they honour them because of what is divinely clear. And all things work together for evil to the rest of the world, even what is clear[and good]; for they revile such [that is evil in Hate of evil], because of the obscurities which they do not understand." Blaise Pascal

"There is some soul of goodness in things evil,
Would men observingly distil it out.

For our bad neighbour makes us early stirrers,
Which is both healthful and good husbandry:
Besides, they are our outward consciences,
And preachers to us all, admonishing
That we should dress us fairly for our end.
Thus may we gather honey from the weed,
And make a moral of the devil himself."
Henry V [IV, 1]
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whitetrshsoldier
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Post by whitetrshsoldier » August 20th, 2009, 4:55 pm

Ape,

If I believed in the soul, I would love it as not going to hell. I would expect god to do the same, but he has expressed in the bible his desire to not do so.

His intent on damning anybody who does not drop to their knees to praise him for his greatness is not good. It is megomaniacal and self-serving, and I will never accept it as selfless or loving.

Please do not try to defend any deity who would damn me to hell for not praising him for his forgiveness of a sin that HE BRED ME INTO.
"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"

ape
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Post by ape » August 20th, 2009, 5:07 pm

[quote="whitetrshsoldier"]Ape,
If I believed in the soul, I would love it as not going to hell. I would expect god to do the same, but he has expressed in the bible his desire to not do so.
ape: No he has not. You are reading him literally when he is writing metaphorically and can only be understood figuratively.
Here is is what he does in general and ALWAYS IN LOVE:

Romans 4:
17...God, who ... calls those things which be not [so] [as though they were [so]].

Can you give me one 4 letter-word for what God is defining himself as there in Romans 4:17?
It begins with an 'l' and ends with an 'r.'
This is one of the kinds of people you most likely also do not love, nor love you as.
So, from word one, you will misread whatever he says.
See?
wts:
His intent on damning anybody who does not drop to their knees to praise him for his greatness is not good. It is megomaniacal and self-serving, and I will never accept it as selfless or loving.
ape: If he were so, you wd be right.
But he is NOT so ---tho' he wants you to love YOU as such so you wd love him when he LOOKS so or when you THINK he IS so!
He actually says that everybody is saved--already!
Do you know that?
Wd u like me to show you where it is?
wts:
Please do not try to defend any deity who would damn me to hell for not praising him for his forgiveness of a sin that HE BRED ME INTO.
ape: He cd defend himself better than I can--believe me!:)
BUT if I were Him or if He were me, especially YOU wd have free pass straight, --no go to jail, no pay any dollars,--to Heaven!
But I wd be faking you to make you feel so special: everybody has a FREE pass and are ALREADY saved and were NEVER at any time ever lost!
Hmmmm
And He is better than me!
So you got it made---already!:)
Do you like being tricked?
Well, you just got played the best one by the Master Player!
You just said the greatest words ever and yet don't understand the truth of what you just said means!
Here are some leading questions:
How cd God condemn you for doing what he does?
How cd God not NOT condemn you if he himself does what you do?
If God does all that you do and is cool with it, what is the only sin we cd 'commit'?
Is that ONLY sin an act or a THOUGHT?
If you choose THOUGHT, what is the only thought that can be a sin if God thinks all thoughts and so all thoughts are ok to be thought?
THINK about those last 3!
Now listen to this::)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJwe-3AA ... re=related
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Post by whitetrshsoldier » August 20th, 2009, 5:24 pm

If the bible can't be read literally, then it means whatever I want it to. If that's true, it's worthless.

If the bible is worthless, so is everything it preaches. If everything it preaches is worthless, so is the person who 'supposedly' preached it.

End of story.
p.s. Ziggy Marley should go hit the bong some more. Then maybe he could go and die off like his idiot father, and I would never have to hear him speak or sing again. Mindless idiots.
"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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