Theodicy: solution lies in definition of God (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Thursday, August 19, 2021, 15:06 (358 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: Yes life is a free-for-all, but not evolution.

dhw: How do you know? If your God gives organisms the means of adapting autonomously to different surroundings, why should he not provide them with the means of autonomously inventing new ways of adapting to different surroundings?

The bold is your wishful guess


DAVID: Feser asked for limitations in implying various possibilities in descriptions of God.

dhw: If Feser is free to inform us that his God is all-good, immutable, all-knowing etc., does that mean he has a divine right to stop me from proposing that God – if he exists – might experiment, get new ideas as he goes along, create a free-for-all? You have said yourself that we can only form our subjective impressions of God by studying his works. These are manifested by a vast bush of life forms which have come and gone, often eating one another, often ravaged by disease, sometimes destroyed by natural disasters, and the vast majority having no link whatsoever with humans. You have agreed that all my alternatives explain the history of life. How do you and Feser know that none of them are correct, and we must all accept your unprovable theory that your God’s nature corresponds exclusively to such human concepts as good, immutable, all-knowing etc.?

You have every right to your views of a very humanized God which explain the history of evolution/life very differently than I do. We have outlined our differences.

DAVID: […] you want Him spectating.

dhw: You have said yourself that you are sure he watches us with interest.

DAVID: Allegorically, not in a human sense.

dhw: What on earth does that mean? What does watching with interest symbolize?

He does not watch in a human way.

DAVID: […] you resent being limited in your areas of criticism of God, in which you totally humanize Him to make your criticisms.

dhw: There are no criticisms of God in any of my alternative theistic theories! I do not regard it as a criticism of God to compare him - in his uniquely divine manner - to an experimental scientist, or a painter who gets new ideas as he goes along, or a novelist who allows the characters to take over the story. Feser makes similar comparisons (plus a builder). What I resent is Feser’s assumptions – which you obviously share - that God has all the attributes you both want him to have, and that any alternative is to be dismissed, no matter how logically it fits in with life’s history.

DAVID: I'll make my same point. Theists view God in certain ways which limits the expanse of what might be implied as to His thinking and possible intentions.

dhw: And you think I have tunnel vision! In any case, you are wrong. There are deists who think their God set creation in motion and then left it to run its own course, there are process theologians who believe God is constantly in the process of becoming (i.e. not immutable), experiences and loves the process of changing nature, and is “the great companion – the fellow sufferer who understands” (Oxford Dic. of World Religions), and there are theists who believe in multiple gods that manifest multiple human characteristics. How dare any theist insist that God must only be viewed his way and no other?

You are right about all the different deism/theisms of which I am totally aware. I follow Thomism thought in thinking about God. Thus I read Feser.

DAVID: Your approach is uninhibited and wide open to all imaginations possible.

dhw: My approach in all cases has been to find a rational explanation for the history of life as we know it. You have agreed that every single one of my theistic proposals is logical, unlike your own, which leaves you with premises you simply cannot explain.

You rigidly oppose my point of view. You keep forgetting I accept your theories only if I accept a very humanizing form of a God, which I don't. Please remember the point even if yhou don't like it..

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