RS - Problem of Evil

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  • The Problem of Evil
    • the evidential problem of evil
      • why is there SO MUCH evil if there has to be some?
      • William Rowe's examples of pointless suffering
        • the man who kills, beats and rapes his girlfriends daughter
        • a fawn dies slowly and alone after a forest fire
    • the logical problem of evil
      • the inconsistent triad (epicurus)
        • God is omnibenevolent
          • "a wholly good being eliminates evil as far as it can" J.L. Mackie
        • God is omnipotent
        • Evil Exists
        • a version of the irenaean theodicy
        • "is he both able and willing? then whence cometh evil?"
    • "evil is the rock of atheism" Hume
    • defenses of God/Theodicies
      • Aquinas
        • divine goodness is different to human goodness
      • John Hick's Soul making theodicy
        • modern version of the Iranean Theodicy
        • we have to perfect ourselves (in his image vs in his likeness)
          • "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness" Genesis, Bible
        • " intrinsically more valuable than virtues created within him ready made without effort on his own part"
          • diminishes role of Jesus as Messiah
          • otherwise we'd just be very moral robots
        • the world is "rather well adapted to the quite different purpose of soul making"
          • evil matters more
            • "only in such a world can mutual caring and love be elicited"
        • if you don't do it in this life, you get reincarnated and can try again
          • your actions don't matter?
        • explains why we can't know God -
          • we'd have to obey him - like driving with a policeman in the back seat
      • Free will defence
        • Søren Kierkegaard's parable of the king and the peasant girl
        • Richard Swinburne - God can't prevent serious moral evil without restricting choice
          • "we are asking [...] that God should make a toy world, a world where things matter, but not very much"
        • weaknesses
          • J.L Mackie - could create beings that always chose good
            • John Hick says these would be no more free than robots
          • Peter Vardy - what about natural evil?
          • determinists - we don't have free will, it is all cause and effect
          • love can never be expressed through pain (D.Z Phillips)
      • Process Thought (not a theodicy)
        • based on work by A.N. Whitehead but created by David Griffin
        • hebrew translation of bible "when God began to create the heavens and the earth, the earth was without form"
          • God created the world out of Chaos and can't control natural laws
            • HE IS NOT OMNIPOTENT
              • "God is the fellow sufferer" A.N Whitehead
              • Brian Davis - God is also "In the soup"
            • "God cannot coerce worldly beings because the inherent power they have cannot be overriden" David Griffin
              • makes you feel at one with God
              • is this a God worth worshipping?
              • like a father - the holy trinity
    • suffering is unevenly distributed
    • the brothers Karamazov (novel written by Fydor Dostoyevsky to talk about philosophy through fictional characters)
      • "It's not God that I don't accept, Alyosha, only I most respectfully return him the ticket [to heaven]”
        • Ivan Karamzov (fictional) believed we shouldn't accept favour from a God who causes such suffering
    • augustinian theodicy
      • God created the world good but it went bad bc of original sin


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