Outline of Evil and Suffering; The Problem of Evil

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  • Created by: Carly B
  • Created on: 16-04-13 12:45
  • Natural Evil - any evil that is brought about outside the control and influence of free-will agents, EG natural disasters, earthquakes, hurricanes
  • Arguably, it is the actions of free-will agents that can lead to natural evil (eg climate change) so can they be blamed?
  •  Moral Evil - any evil that is brought about directly by a free-will agent, EG murder, ****, abuse
  • Can God be held accountable in any way for moral evil?


Animals Suffering

  •  Nature is "red is tooth and claw"
  • If humans have the free-will to choose good/evil, and animals don't have this moral choice - why do they suffer?
  • Suffering is to improve/develop your soul but if animals don't have a soul - why do they still suffer?
  • An omnibenevolent God would not have created animal suffering as part of the natural order of the world.
  • Pain is necessary for a living thing to best learn how to survive in the world.
  • Suffering as part of natural selection will develop and better the species.
  • Suffering of animals is an extended punishment to humans empithetically
  • Animal suffering exists to allow humans to develop and practise positive qualities EG compassion, caring

Innocent Suffering

  • Why would an omnibenevolent God allow an innocent suffer?
  • If suffering is to punish wrongs, what have innocents done to deserve their suffering?
    • Story of Job
    • Innocent suffering may seem unjust now but we do not have God's perpective. As long as God has a reason it is not unjust suffering.

Immense Suffering

  • How could an omnibenevolent God allow millions of humans to suffer?
  • Leibinez suggests that God created the optimum conditions for us to grow towards God
  • Immense suffering allows us to develop positive qualities EG compassion, empathy


Mackie; The Inconsistent Triad

  • 1) God is omnibenevolent
  • 2) God is omnipotent
  • 3) Evil Exists
  • "Either God wants to abolish evil and cannot, or he can but does not want to. If he wants to but cannot, he is impotent. If he can but does not want to, he is wicked"
  • If


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