This week, my report is about the POE (Problem of Evil).
On Bernardo Kastrup’s blog, there was an interesting discussion recently about the POE in the comments section of this entry:
Bernardo Kastrup: Realities of Academic publishing
A commenter by the name of Steve Turnbull seems to believe strongly in the POE:
I certainly understand the appeal of idealism - you (username tjssailor) make a very good case. But I have yet to be persuaded on the problem of evil. Like you and countless others I have suffered a lot in life. My parents divorced. My brother committed suicide. My marriage broke up (happily I’m with a new partner). And lots more besides So there’s certainly more than enough there not to believe in God;) But there’s also more than enough in nature/the universe to keep me searching for answers. And I’m open to any avenue that might provide them - both scientific and spiritual/religious. Let me ask you then - how do you know the ‘judicial thugs’ will transition to another state of being and suffer the consequences of their actions?Steve also shared this article from BeThinking.org from William Lane Craig:
Be Thinking: WLC and the Problem of Evil
In this article, WLC distinguishes between two different kinds of POE:
During the last quarter century or so, an enormous amount of philosophical analysis has been poured into the problem of evil, with the result that genuine philosophical progress on the age-old question has been made. We may begin our inquiry by making a number of distinctions to help keep our thinking straight. Most broadly speaking, we must distinguish between the intellectual problem of evil and the emotional problem of evil. The intellectual problem of evil concerns how to give a rational explanation of the co-existence of God and evil. The emotional problem of evil concerns how to comfort those who are suffering and how to dissolve the emotional dislike people have of a God who would permit such evil. The intellectual problem lies in the province of the philosopher; the emotional problem lies in the province of the counselor.On the Kastrup link, someone made a comment on how the concept of evil comes from humans. I agreed with him, and then I posted something about the POE from another site (I won’t share the location here):
There is no problem of Evil -- as you guys have rightly said here. Atheists cannot define evil -- as my discussion with them about the justification of lies on CARM exposed. If they do define evil (as HRG did), they rely on theist definitions, which is it’s own self-contradictory thing.
Atheism has the root problem of being based on things placed in the wrong ontological position. Placing Man at the center of the universe is as equally-indefensible as geocentric cosmology.
Then, I posted a link to Joe’s blog entry about the POE:
Religious A Priori: Answer to Theodicy-Soteriological Drama
Here’s Joe’s argument:
(1)God’s purpose in creation: to create a Moral Universe, that is one in which free moral agents willingly choose the good.On Kastrup’s blog, Damien said this about Joe’s article:
(2) Moral choice requires absolutely that choice be free (thus free will is necessitated).
(3) Allowance of free choices requires the risk that the chooser will make evil choices.
(4). The possibility of evil choices is a risk God must run, thus the value of free outweighs all other considerations, since without there would be no moral universe and the purpose of creation would be thwarted.
This leaves the atheist in the position of demanding to know why God doesn’t just tell everyone that he’s there, and that he requires moral behavior, and what that entails. Thus there would be no mystery and people would be much less inclined to sin.
This is the point where Soteriological Drama figures into it. Argument on Soteriological Drama:
(5) Life is a “Drama” not for the sake of entertainment, but in the sense that a dramatic tension exists between our ordinary observations of life on a daily basis, and the ultimate goals, ends and purposes for which we are on this earth.
(6) Clearly God wants us to seek on a level other than the obvious, daily, demonstrative level or he would have made the situation more plain to us.
(7) We can assume that the reason for the “big mystery” is the internalization of choices. If God appeared to the world in open objective fashion and laid down the rules, we would probably all try to follow them, but we would not want to follow them. Thus are obedience would be lip service and not from the heart.
(8) Therefore, God wants a heart felt response which is internationalized value system that comes through the search for existential answers; that search is phenomenological; introspective, internal, not amenable to ordinary demonstrative evidence.
Thanks Jbsptn, the article does make some good points, however I get the feeling that it is talking of ‘God’ being something entirely separate.Check out these articles and the comments (on Kastrup’s article). Lots of good stuff there. Have a nice day!