Theodicy (Introduction)

by dhw, Tuesday, October 13, 2020, 11:27 (9 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: We are discussing theodicy! Your molecular errors are one form of “bad”, which you say he tried to correct because he wished us no harm. Bad bugs are another form of “bad”, and you say he designed them but you don't know why. They hardly fit the image of a God who wishes us no harm, do they? I suggest he didn’t attempt to correct the errors, but the attempts were made by good free cells trying to fight bad free cells, just as good free bacteria might try to fight bad free bacteria, while God watches with interest as they all try to master the challenges to their survival.

DAVID: Again you have a weak God who is a spectator.
And later:
DAVID: As above you want a weak God. My God designs all and I admit I don't know why He designed the bad bugs.

Then according to your logic, your God must be “weak” because he gave humans free will to practise good and evil, and because he watches us try to meet his challenges. You have him trying in vain to correct errors he couldn’t prevent, and you have no idea why he designed bad bugs even though he doesn’t wish us any harm. What's more, you yourself have suggested that although he no longer intervenes, he is watching us with interest.(I don't have time to look for the exact quote.) Why don’t you consider the logic of my proposal instead of faffing around with your concepts of what makes your God weak or strong?

DAVID: You are back to humanizing God who has to have gimmicks to retain interest. My view is that God has no need for it.

dhw: First you reject intelligent cells, then it’s back to your silly “humanizing”. You have said that your God probably has thought patterns, emotions and other attributes similar to ours, and you have always said that he must be interested in his creations, and it was you who suggested that he wanted to challenge us. Why are the challenges to humans not humanized “gimmicks” but challenges to other organisms are? And how do you know what God needs?

DAVID: I don't know what God needs but you offer a plethora of humanizing needs for Him.

In the above proposal, I have him giving cells/cell communities the freedom to design themselves as they meet what you call the “challenges”, and I have your God watching them with interest. What “plethora” of humanizing needs have you found in that proposal?

Under “Bacteria fungus symbiosis”:
DAVID: Happily working it out by mutual adaptation using modifying mechanisms that I believe are God designed.

dhw: I’m again delighted to see you acknowledging that they “work it out” using a mechanism designed by your God. The mechanism would have to be what I call “cellular intelligence” – how else can any organism happily work anything out, if not by using its intelligence?

The rest of the post ends up with you claiming you know Shapiro’s thoughts and their theoretical limitations. Now perhaps you will answer my question.


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