Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able ? Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing ? Then he is malevolent.
Is he both willing and able ? Then whence cometh evil ?
Is he neither able nor willing ? Then why call him God ?
Any thoughts ?
"Most of the christians around me have told me... "The reason God does not prevent things like cancer.. natural disasters.. etc.. is because after the fall of man... (What their bible tells them in Genesis) They were taken out of the Garden into a broken world." This is how most counter me when I present this riddle. They say that their religion covers this and that this is not a logical argument for them. How can I argue this?"
Maybe reading my blog in the blog section titled Theodicy might help you.
Anthony, I agree, your Theodicy is a good read.
That is truly pure and utter nonsense. There is no plan, no design, no sin, no fall of man. The broken world is their imagination fed by hope and fear.
Of course downtrodden people who can't find the bottom rung of a ladder to healthy, productive, meaningful living seek magic to get them out of their mental and physical hell, but the reality is that natural world offers no guarantees, no security, no guy in sky to rescue them. Real life means eating other creatures and being eaten. Life requires vigilance, intelligence, skills, and community.
Imagine a black African slave in chains in a cotton field in the Americas and his and her unanswered prayers, even as he or she mimics the prayers and hymns of white slave owners. They had no hope of redemption, except death, and no way out of pain and suffering caused by human imagination.
We must KILL that imagination. We can't be quiet or polite or gentle. We have to be as powerful and as strong and as vocal as the magic-believers.
"...We must KILL that imagination. We can't be quiet or polite or gentle. We have to be as powerful and as strong and as vocal as the magic-believers.
I'm 100% with you on all you said Joan.
So well said, Joan! Life and the universe are completely indifferent to suffering and pain but humans have the potential to build something better out of our ability to empathize and care for each other.
B.K. Exactly, humans have that extra grey matter that allows us to move into a higher plane of interpersonal relationships than chimps and baboons. You say it so well, "the potential to build something better out of our ability to empathize and care for each other." Since the potential is there, it now becomes a matter if we have the will to move higher
Actually I've even taken passages from the Bible that prove that if you take the Old Testament literally, their god is nothing more than an extremely Malevolent, Narcissistic Megalomaniac.
They cannot argue with this because it is so written in their scriptures, but, again their schizophrenic delusion base is far more important than reality, so they go into complete denial of the Old Testament.
They then just rant about belief in Jesus is all that is required, to which I remind them that if the Old Testament/Judaism didn't exist, then Jesus Christ wouldn't have existed, because Judaism is the basis of his mission.
To which they simply ignore me and avoid eye contact with me completely.
I've defeated them, but they will always be in denial of this fact.
Because their delusion is as important to them as breathing.
There's no winning against devout crackpots!
Christians will claim that God, in sending Jesus, opened a new dispensation in the way he deals with man, and that he is no longer the harsh and evil bastard of the Old Testament. I guess they forget how the Bible says that God never changes, and that there is no shadow of turning in him.
I share your analysis, "god is nothing more than an extremely Malevolent, Narcissistic Megalomaniac." Have you heard Richard Dawkins's rant?
“The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”
~ Richard Dawkins, The God of the Old Testament.
Another hammer in the theistic coffin for me personally.
Like many logical arguments, they appeal well to those who are actively questioning. The stalwart believers will ignore it just as hard as any others. However, it's nice to see that our LACK of belief has at least as extensive a history as existing belief systems do.