Theodicy (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Saturday, November 07, 2020, 19:34 (648 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: (Under "Junk DNA: goodbye!"): As usual the 'dark areas' of DNA are purposeful. I cannot image a designing God who created a bunch of useless DNA. God, as I view Him, is purely purposeful, and never shows frivolous human thoughts or desires.

dhw: I don’t know what you mean by “purely” purposeful. You have explained the clearly defined purpose of this “area” of DNA. So why do you think he did not have a clearly defined purpose in designing every life form, or in designing humans?

I specifically said all dark areas of DNA have purpose. You continually misunderstand me as you read me from a biased mind .

dhw: And since you are sure your God watches us with interest, why is it more “frivolous” for him to have created life in order to watch it with interest than, for instance, to set us a challenge by leaving us to combat the bad bugs he has created (one of your own theories)? Why would he set us a challenge?

To make our lives more interesting, but not for His self-purpose of some sort of enjoyment. His purposes are never self-centered as you humanize Him.

dhw: I’m happy to drop the “frivolous” term “spectacle” and stick to your own positive statement that he is interested in us.

DAVID: I cannot fully solve the problem. You keep forgetting our interpretation of evil comes from our human assumption that God is benevolent. He may not be and we may have to accept that point, and deny religion's propaganda about His characteristics. also rightly point out all the good things he has done (and I must confess that my own view is that the world really is a mixture of wondrous beauty and love, and sheer horror), and so it is also possible that just like us he is a mixture of “good” and “bad”. We are making progress in our search for possible reasons why your God – if he exists – might have created or allowed evil.

I really doubt God has an evil side. I believe what we see as evil bugs have a purpose

DAVID: The prime issue is why do we exist? It cannot be by chance. Therefore, from my standpoint, God exists.

dhw: The problem of theodicy only arises if we accept the premise that God exists! His existence is not the subject we are discussing!

We will stick to a discussion that follows from the proposition God exists.

DAVID: And we are here to look at what we consider evil He allowed. I am not considering the evil humans do with their free will. We do that, not God.

dhw: Are you telling us that your God didn’t know evil existed until – according to you - he specially designed us and gave us free will? How could the very concept of evil come into being if God – according to you, the source of everything – didn’t know about the self-interest which lies at the heart of most human evils?

Again, one of your weird convoluted views of what I wrote. We both know free will leads to human evils. God obviously expected that also. My comment is meant to limit us to other forms of bad things, bugs, tornados, earthquakes, etc.

DAVID: Metabolic mistakes have excellent, if not perfect editing system, which I believe is the best God can do to create life. God has reasons for the bad bugs I do not understand, but accept He wanted them and gave us the brains to fight them.

DAVID: That is as far as I can go. We do not know if He is interested. But He has made our lives very interesting, at our human level, a good not an evil.

dhw: You have already gone much further, with your certainty that he is watching us with interest, with your theory that he may have designed the bad bugs as a challenge, and now with your acknowledgement that for all we know, he is not benevolent, to which I have added the possibility that just like us, he is a mixture. After all, it is perfectly possible that he made us in his own image, i.e. as you have put it, that he thinks like us, has logic thought patterns, emotions and other attributes similar to ours. Thank you for your gradually increasing open-mindedness. We are certainly making progress in our various attempts to solve the theodicy problem.;-)

The bold is not my view of God's thinking: I view God as producing results based on his purposes with reasons for them not known by us. I don't think He creates reality for His own self-interest. I view Him as a creator for the sake of creating. I think we both agree He follows the events His creation produces, and it is my position that He steps in to guide the course of evolution to be sure it reaches Humans.

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