Theodicy: solution lies in definition of God (Introduction)

by dhw, Sunday, October 17, 2021, 09:13 (48 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: it is your imagined God who is n-p even if you point out the weird purpose as reasonable, which for me isn't. I did answer the bold with an answer you reject, so now I didn't answer???

dhw: Firstly, why is it namby-pamby to design a system that will produce the constantly changing spectacle that is formed by the history of life as we know it? Secondly, you have NOT answered the bolded question. Why is it less “human” for your God to be unable to produce a perfect system, and also unable to control some of its errors, than for your God to produce a system that he wants to produce?

DAVID: The 'changing spectacle' is the process of evolution, nothing more. You need spectacle for your humanized God.

Why is that “namby-pamby” and why is it more “humanized” than a God who tries but sometimes fails to correct the errors caused by the system he designed?

DAVID: Difference is I don't think God could have produced any other system of life and purposely edited for errors.

I know. You have now decided that your all-powerful God was incapable of designing a perfect system, and tried but often failed to “edit” for errors. For example, you believe that the production of new antibodies against new invaders is automatic, so what happened to the 4,882,066 people who up until last Friday had been killed by the Corona virus your God designed for good reasons as yet unknown? (If you don’t believe your God designed this particular virus, then substitute any other killer virus you think he did design.) May I suggest that even if these people’s cells recognized the foreign invader, they were unable to design the required new antibodies – as opposed to your God’s automated process mysteriously failing to spring into action?

DAVID: You don't seem to separate God from His living biochemical system. In my view He designed the only system that would work to produce life. His system can make errors, but there are no errors in his design to which He also designed editing for errors. My view of God is that He designed a system that He knew would result in rare errors.

He designed the system which can make errors but there are no errors in his design. No wonder you are advocating a God who doesn’t have to be logical. But well done God for realizing that the system he designed would result in rare errors that would cause immense suffering and death to millions of people, and well done you for realizing that his unknown intentions are good, but he just doesn’t have the power to prevent the nasty consequences of his design.

DAVID: Our difference is my God knew what single system would provide life, and accepted it. He cannot invent would could not work!!!

Our difference is that your all-powerful God is not all-powerful and because of his limitations is not responsible for any of what we humans consider to be the bad side of life which raises the great problem of theodicy. My proposal is that he is all-powerful (if he exists) and deliberately created a system that left organisms free to design their own means of survival in ever changing conditions. In other words, he designed the system he wanted to design instead of being forced by the circumstances he had created to design a system which he himself was unhappy with (hence the often vain attempts to correct its errors). For reasons which you refuse to offer, you regard a God who produces what he wants to produce as namby-pamby and more human than a God whose powers are limited and who tries (often in vain) to make up for his limitations. NB In view of past distortions, this is not a criticism of your God but a criticism of your concept of your God.

DAVID: He didn't wish for the only life system that could work. Since He made life appear from an inorganic Earth, His miraculous result works. He accepted what would work. And you call Him limited while we have consciousness as humans, the only consciousness existing besides His.

There is no logic in this disjointed statement. If he exists, he designed the system. Yes, it works. He didn’t “accept” what would work – he designed it! And what he designed also contains features that do not work. You say he could not do otherwise, and so it is you who call him limited! How our consciousness is meant to explain the errors in the system – the “bad” side of life that creates the problem of theodicy – I really don’t know, except that our free-running conscious human behaviour is probably the greatest source of what we call the “bad” side of life!:-(


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