Theodicy (Introduction)

by dhw, Saturday, October 17, 2020, 11:53 (660 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: You know very well that the God I am describing is just as full of purpose as yours. The only difference between us is that I am prepared to say what that purpose might be: to provide an ever changing spectacle. Now please tell us what you think was his firm objective in designing bad bugs. If your answer is that he wants to challenge us, please remember that bad bugs existed long before we did, and also tell us his purpose in wanting to challenge us. And while you’re at it, tell us why you view a God who wants and creates a free-for-all as “weak”.

DAVID: Our images of God's personality are totally different. I view Him as having a direct course to humans.

As you have admitted on the “errors” thread, there is no direct course to humans.

DAVID: I can't tell you why the bad bugs exist. God isn't talking. He has his reasons and we have the brains from Him to fight them.

Bad bugs existed long before we did. You have raised the problem of theodicy and you offered us the possible solution that God wanted to “challenge us”. You seem to have dropped it, now that you realize that this is a humanization and if you follow that idea to its logical conclusion, you will have to admit that your God is probably watching with interest how we respond to his challenges, and this in turn leads to the conclusion that he created us in order to watch us with interest (i.e. we are part of the great spectacle).

DAVID: Theodicy is a human view of what God might have done wrong. There is nothing wrong for us believers to assume God has His own reasons we do not understand.

dhw: So did you start this new thread to tell us that you can’t think of an explanation and there is nothing wrong with that?

DAVID: There is nothing wrong with assuming God has his reasons. I've not read theologians' thoughts but tried to develop my own.

Of course God if he exists, he has his reasons. The development of your own thoughts has led you to admitting that you haven’t a clue. At least I have managed to come up with a possible explanation of “evil”, and your only reason for rejecting it seems to be that you don’t like the image of God that it suggests.

DAVID: You should understand that faith involved in that statement.

dhw: Yes, I do. You have faith in all your theories, even when you can’t find any logic behind them (see the post on “error corrections”) and you reject any explanations that don’t fit in with your preconceptions concerning God’s nature and purpose. ;-)

DAVID: I've explained my logic about errors. You illogically reject them: simply God gave us the best living system He could.:-)

The “errors” thread has moved on to your whole theory of evolution. As regards errors in particular, it makes no sense to claim that he tried to correct them because he didn’t want to harm us but he also directly created bad bugs whose purpose is to harm us.

DAVID: As for free-for-all we free-will folks provide plenty of spectacle if He wants to note it. But we do not know if that was his reasoning in granting free will to us. I believe He felt free will was an important attribute we needed to have.

dhw: If he exists, then obviously it was important or he wouldn’t have given it to us. A free-for-all among all organisms that have formed the vast, 3.8-billion-year-old bush of life would also have given him plenty of spectacle. And that would be a purpose for your purposeful God, as opposed to your purposeful God directly creating all of them, including free-will humans, for a purpose we can’t guess at.

DAVID: My guess is that God created humans to dominate and control the Earth when evolution ended. My purposeful God doesn't care about spectacle. Again you are humanizing God.

What do you think was your purposeful God's purpose in getting humans to dominate the Earth (after he had directly designed millions and millions of life forms and econiches that wouldn't even be there when humans arrived)? You have agreed that free will provides plenty of spectacle. What is wrong with the idea that God wanted to create plenty of spectacle? All you can come up with is “weak” and “humanizing”, the first of which is a meaningless judgement and the second of which is countered by your perfectly logical conclusion that a God who creates a being with certain thought patterns, emotions and other attributes probably has thought patterns, emotions and other attributes similar to ours.

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