The problem of Evil and Suffering Part 1

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  • Created on: 28-05-19 11:12
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  • Problem of Evil and Suffering- part 1
    • Augustinian theodicy
      • God is perfect+ He created the world= The world is perfect
      • Evil is a privation of good
      • "Evil is either sin or the punishment of sin"
      • God is still all-loving by giving humans his only son for us to have eternal life
      • A+E (the Fall Genesis 3) disobeyed God- thus evil is the result of humans falling from God's grace
      • "The penalty of sin corrects the dishonour of sin"- God is just as he doesn't intervene + respects human free will
    • Logical problem of evil
      • Epicurean paradox- if God was all-powerful he could prevent evil and suffering however he doesn't
      • Mackie- Inconsistent triad if God was omnibenevolent, omniscient and omnipotent he would be able to stop evil
      • Therefore, All three statements are contradictory as they can't all be logically possible at the same time
      • Concluding that God does not exist as it is incompatible w/ the existence of evil
    • Evidential problem of evil
      • Rowe- the existence of evil makes God's existence improbable or unlikely
    • Criticisms of Augustine's theodicy
      • Schleiermacher- argues how can a perfect world go wrong- whether it wasn't perfect to begin w/ of it was made to go wrong
      • How can we chose to do wrong if we are made in the image of God who (according to this theodicy) is intrinsically perfect
      • Evolution is proof of humans evolving not regenerating (or falling)- furthermore A+E aren't historical figures for most christians
      • Nature is "red in tooth and claw"  Lord Alfred Tennyson
      • By calling evil the privation of good it diminishes feelings of suffering to merely a lack of something we believe to be innately within us
      • It is unjust for people to inherit the sins of another due to the other person's actions- such as children who are innocent
    • Support for Augstine's theodicy
      • Davies- supports that evil cannot be a substance, meaning God isn't responsible for evil
      • If God gave us free will then moral evil is inevitable to happen as it is made a possibility
      • Swinburne-  we choose to follow God, otherwise faith would be meaningless if we didn't go to it willingly
      • Plantinga- if we were designed to only choose good we wouldn't have full autonomy
      • Successfully accounts for the creation of natural evil as the loss of balance w/ moral behaviour
    • Logical problem of evil- breakdown
      • Premise 1- Evil + suffering exist
        • Augustine argues evil is a privation  of good not a thing itself
      • Premise 2- God is all loving and powerful
        • Deists believe God is impersonal and doesn't interfere, thus he doesn't have all-loving and good qualities
          • Meaning we are humanising him and diminishing his power
      • Premise 3-  An all-loving + all-powerful God, if he existed, would remove evil + suffering
        • 1) God doesn't exist, 2) a world without evil is illogical, 3) God believes we need evil to understand good
      • Conclusion- He doesn't exist
        • If the premise can be proven to be true, then the conclusion is true
        • If the premise can be proven to be false the arugment will fail


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