Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

Patrick H



The atheist does not care what evil is just that it is despicable and to be avoided at all costs.


The believer will not settle for that.  She or he will try to redefine evil in such a way that one can get out of inferring that God must have created evil.  The notion that evil is not a thing or a power but a defect is key to such attempts and is the backdrop to all attempts to show that evil and the existence of a loving creator God are not in contradiction.


The doctrine that evil is nothing but the absence of good implies that the bigger the evil the more it is virtually nothing. That is a contradiction. The more evil cannot be the same as less evil.  Evil cannot be fought with nonsense but merely empowered so it is a way of sounding and seeming good while sowing poison around. Evil being a mere negation means in a sense the more evil the less evil there is. See the point?

This makes any punishment of murder or adultery or bank robbery to be unfair and evil for it is the petty thief and the person telling white lies who should be punished.

The difference between good and evil become a difference of more or less. Human nature would love to hear that.

Spinoza thought that Good was merely power and Evil was weakness. All thinkers who think along those lines and who see love as a form of power and indeed the only real power are satisfying their crave for power and control.  Is love being good for us more important than love being power?  No.  It has to be power first and foremost before it can be good for us.  That is why those who love the most or talk about love the most are often the riskiest individuals you can meet.

If this stuff is not denial of the existence of evil it is trying to be. If it is refusing to call a spade a spade then it is evil. It tries to create a harmony between virtue and vice. It turns evil into a word more than anything else. And human nature does take labels and words seriously. People condoning evil does not mean they really think of it correctly as evil – they could be talking about a label!

So if evil is not real then it does not need a cause. A defect that is unavoidable is enough to explain where it comes from.  To teach that God is all good creator of all pressures people to accept the notion that evil is not real.  In fact, even if the doctrine is true it is not right to pressure people to believe it.  It should be believed freely and because it is right and not because of pressure.  Any pressure may make people seem to be morally compliant but they will explode or end up doing secret evil.  It is evil in itself to oppose evil for the wrong reasons.  It stops one

Leibnitz thought evil was just a lack of good down to the fact that creatures by default cannot be perfect and even God cannot make them perfect but this is not the same as Augustine’s doctrine. Augustine thought evil was merely the lack of a moral good.

Leibnitz actually turned sin into a necessary evil! Sin or wrongdoing are inetivable because human nature is limited and has to be limited. Does this erase the idea of God being responsible for evil if he made us? Some say yes and others say no. The answer is that if God wants to create he has the right to tought he will lead us to evil for it does

It means we cannot say man is inexcusalble when doing evil.

It turns sin inot a ntural evil. It is just a necessary part of being human and thus as natural as our weakness and iabitilyt to fight against cratures in the wild.

People can easily feel that evil and suffering are illusions or less than good as opposed to evil until they get an ulcer or something. That stops them trivialising evil. It is scandalous that it needs to happen to them before they realise. Their empathy for starving babies is low.  No matter how bad people are or a group is some will surprise you and help the babies.  That is human nature.  Religion has no right to say people who do that shows religion's unique and supernatural power to do good.  That is religion trying to use something that happens naturally in its own favour and is a sign that religion is actually crafty.  The question is not, "Why are some people in the religion so good at times to the babies?" but rather, "Why do most believers in the religion do little or nothing for the babies and why is there no real sacrifice in what they do?" 

If X had cancer or lost their child, no Christian came along and said to X, "There is good in what happened. The evil itself was only good in the wrong place. It was not as bad as you thought or think." Indeed the Christian would surely be obligated to say just that and to say it is the truth. The Christian doctrine that where possible we should look at the good not the bad especially when seeing the good is seeing God who is perfect goodness demands just that. Not saying it would be very manipulative of the Christians. It contradicts their doctrine that the good is to be seen and focused on more than the bad. They claim to be trying to put God before others and to serve others for the sake of God. Thus they in fact should say it for defending God takes priority over the feelings of others. Jesus himself had that attitude when he rioted in the Temple and upset the Jews. Its very fake to say that evil is nothing and then not tell suffering people that. 

To tell somebody to see their suffering as good in the wrong place is telling them they are making it worse for themselves by failing to see its goodness. It shows blatant disregard for them and a horrendous lack of empathy. It pressures them to do the impossible - see the suffering as almost a benefit - to please God. If suffering is misplaced good then it is an abused gift from God and so it is blasphemous to think it is awful. They are accused of sin if they fail to look on the suffering as somehow good that is just in the wrong place and time.

Believers might reason, "If belief in God and respect for him makes the person feel worse at least they are told something that - according to the faith - will help them exonerate God and free themselves from the danger of being angry with God." But exonerating God is the principle concern and as God is what ultimately matters it follows that it is the only real concern. This can only make an angry person worse especially considering how anger is largely irrational anyway.

The Christian faith might not voice the nastiness but it is there by implication and lurking in the heart of the faith. The hiding serves only to empower it. People who feel discomfort when priests and clergy come to "comfort" them may have sensed its presence.

It is only people who want to save God from being accused of letting evil and suffering happen with insufficient justification who concentrate on making out that evil is not good but "good". The doctrine is not natural to us and our experience which is what counts opposes it. Our experience is against it even if it is true. Is it really right to oppress people's sense of experience and judge it over a theory for God is nothing more than a theory? Of course it is not right.

The argument is an excuse for not taking responsibility. If evil is like a hole, the hole has to be made. Evil being nothing does not get God off the hook for its a causable nothing. You don't cut a foot wide hole in the Mona Lisa and then say it doesn't matter for nothing is nothing and you cannot create it. It is what you do with nothing not where nothing comes from that is the problem. And so it is with God.


If you create a God who fails to do the right thing and take responsibility, you are taking the responsibility.  If you give a God responsibility then by proxy you take it on yourself especially if he is not there to take responsibility or if he cannot.  Once you believe in God you by default give him responsibility for the universe and all that happens in it.  If God asks you to believe he asks you to take proxy responsibility.  You are responsible if you get God off the hook by saying evil is somehow unreal.  That is so if there is a God.  The responsibility is even heavier on you and belongs to you even more if there is no God.  If the doctrine is offensive then take responsibility and apologise.  Do you want to be intention wise as responsible as God for evil and suffering?  Think about that.


If evil is a mere absence of good then is a disease killing innocent people as much of an evil as somebody deliberately killing them? The outcome is the same.  Religion denies this for it says God can make the disease without sinning while it would be a sin if we made it.  But the outcome is the same and the outcome is the reason we condemn!  It is callous not to care about the outcome when God is responsible for it.  It is hypocritical to pick on the wicked.  Religion cares more about the nature of the action than the deaths.  It should care about the deaths equally whether deliberately done by God or man.

What if the atheists see evil as just misplaced good?

The danger is they could see evil as tolerable. In fact the very notion implies there is something tolerable about evil!

The good side – there is always hope.

The good side- they do not have to risk a God being to blame for evil. Even if we believe that if there is a God then he is good we only believe it meaning we admit we could be wrong.

What if the believer in Gdo sees evil just as misplaced good?
The danger – he could see evil as tolerable. In fact the very notion implies there is something tolerable about evil! The pressure to see it as tolerable increases if you think there is a God responsible for all things. Even if seeing evil as misplaced good is fine we easily distort it to make ourselves see it as not a huge deal.
The good side – there is always hope. But you don’t need God for that. There is a difference between letting hope be and creating a more hopeful version. The latter is really risking and delieveirng false hope. Any hope that is more than what is needed is by default false hope. It I sbad for it sinot needed and also because of the risk of hurting the person. And it is an attempted lie.