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
Gormley


HOW BELIEF IN GOD DENIES THAT FREE WILL TO CHOOSE EVIL IS REAL

Some say that evil including suffering and sickness and crime and being violated are fully illusions or mainly so.

They only say that for they want to believe in God.  Otherwise they would just condemn evil outright and forget about if it is real or a mirage.  That is not very caring of them to treat somebody's suffering as a prop with which to build a God on.

It is not respectful to free will to insult free agents - even if we are not free agents they think we are - to say the abuse of it is to blame for evil when the analysis of evil is so obscene.  Its an insult to humanity and God to blame free will for evil to get God off the hook when free will is not really valued at all.  To glorify evil or water it down means that if its really not bad then there is no such thing as free will after all for free will is about the power to choose evil.

Some argue that the notion of evil being mainly or essentially a lie or unreal or an illusion solves the problem of evil - of how God can be called love and allow terrible things to happen to innocent people.

This shifts the problem of evil to a new problem.  God ends up being accused of creating the illusion of suffering and sickness and injustice and hate.  This new problem is far worse than the one it pretends to fix.  It smacks of God not being able to create real evil so he has to resort to that.  If God is thought to create the illusion of evil then you still have a God creating evil and he is evil for trying to use "but its not real!" as a pathetic excuse.  So you can assume that we are blamed not God for the illusion.  But the fact remains that we do not deliberately create the illusion!  Most of the time we want rid of evil and want it to be a bad dream to snap out of!

It is argued that the proof that God did not create evil is that there is no completely evil being or thing and the reason is that making one is impossible.  This gives rise to the eccentric notion that a wholly evil being would be the same as a non-existent one.  So turning totally evil is impossible for all that will happen is that you would vanish permanently out of existence.  This is total rubbish for it means Hitler's twin brother was so evil that he never came into existence.  What happens to a totally evil sin or crime?  Religion is forced to admit it has enough good in it and is mainly good which is why it exists!

A theodicy is an attempt to show that a perfectly good God can let evil sully his creation and still be perfectly good.  The fundamental theodicy, the one that all others depend on, is that evil is a word to describe an idea but it is not a real thing.  Religion says, ďEvil is simply the absence of good so it does not exist in the sense that it is not a real thing. God is right to allow it for it is a negation and nothing more. There is no evil as such - just misused good. God is not to blame for evil for evil isnít real.  God is good and cannot make evil.Ē

Cancer involves good strong cells that are just out of place.  Its nothing huge.  Free will when used to do evil is really about trying to do good the wrong way.  There is no such thing as a truly bad intention.  A bad intention is a good one that does not reach a certain standard.  That is what this doctrine of the lack says.  Nobody believes it anyway.  Believers in God treat evil as a thing and that is how our nature makes us think of it.  So they pretend that evil is somehow good and fits God while deep down they think God is bad when he creates evil.

Reading between the lines of the lack doctrine, it blames the victim for experiencing evil as something that has nothing to do with good. 

This is not in theory exactly the same as the Christian Science Church teaching that evil and suffering are all in the head and its the victims fault for there is no evil.  But it has exactly the same psychological effect - negative - as that hard-faced doctrine.  It amounts to saying the experience of being raped and abused is good in itself and it is just the time and place and the person's attitude that is the problem.  It is very personal.  It is wholly abusive.  The theories are different but not significantly so or in any meaningful way.  If evil is not real then it is a lie and an illusion in that sense.  Christian Science simply says it is illusion as in being all in the mind.  In personal and human terms the difference does not matter or apply.

If evil is nothing then is no free will to truly be evil.  The experience of evil is a delusion so we are not right in the head if we think suffering is real for us.

Astonishing, truly astonishing, that anybody could accept the lack as an excuse for the divine letting evil happen! It is very hurtful to tell people that their suffering is nothing but the absence of good. And we do treat and think of evil as real when we try to avoid it and we donít excuse anybody for doing it on the grounds that it isnít real! This theodicy is vicious for it has people who oppose evil embracing it by lying to themselves that it isnít real. How can we insult sick people with such an attitude? Evil is what you can condemn a person for committing and if this theodicy works you cannot do that.
 
We want to know how a good God could permit evil. Saying evil isnít real solves nothing for it is still what is to be shunned by God and by man. If it really isnít real then it shouldnít be shunned. The theodicy isnít relevant. It is a trick used by Catholic philosophers to make us think it answers a question it has nothing to do with. The theodicy is an insult to the most important gift we have, our intelligence.
 
The theodicy fails for it attempts to say that evil is abstract like mathematics and that it isnít a real power.  But it is. If evil is a power then God made it and God is evil. Hate is an evil power. It makes no sense to say it is just the absence of love. And what makes it worse is that most people who hate donít want to and want rid of this emotion that has taken over them.  It gets its grip by trying to look good and justified.
 
You cannot say it is okay to run a bakery and burn the cakes deliberately on the basis that the cakes are good and the terrible taste is good in the sense that it proves the taste buds are working. Some say that God made all things out of nothing so that the universe is independent of him and that is what is to blame for the flaws not him. The problems come from the nothing we came from! This makes no sense and the universe cannot truly be independent of an almighty God. If it can then there is no need for him as an explanation for why there are lots of different things rather than nothing.

The theory of sin and evil being a lack suggests the problem is not the damage but the person!  That is a cruel judgemental psychopathic way to look at it.  Its just moralism on steriods.

Who is it that is defining evil as a simple lack of good?  We have no proof that God said it.  Its such a serious matter that we need confirmation.  Where are his specific guidelines for such a dangerous doctrine needs them?

It is human philosophy's definition.  It is theology's definition.  It is not anybody's place to comment on the horrors of injustice and plague and famine that way.  Even if it were plausible it is a problem that it comes from human beings and their thinking.

If evil is an illusion then we don't really know it but just know what it does.  Can we judge for it follows that we never really know evil anyway?  No.  We cannot even judge it in ourselves.  So how can God have the right to judge it? It does away with a God who has moral interests.  It paradoxically does away with this God the very thing it depends on!

If free will is partial then how does that impact?

Is it partial as in being significantly confined by psychological pressure?  In other words, does your brain work like a computer that you can do nothing about but which allows you a little say?  Is it partial in God adding in some force that you are not aware of?  Is it partial in that your situations in which you must choose are forced on you?  God then is forcing you into situations where you will take good and abuse it.  You may choose but so is he.  He is your partner in crime.

The reason evil would be evil is when you look at the circumstances, direct and indirect, that make the action bad and do it anyway.  If evil is distorted good then it is less distorted if there is a God watching over it and working on it to change or diminish it.  The notion that God is a good doctrine for helping you be the best person you can be is a strange one.  Its totally wrong.

If evil is just good that falls short then the sensation that we can choose evil with our free will is an illusion.  It is a trick for evil is a trick both in how it pretends to be good and uses that good as bait and is a trick in how we fool ourselves with it. Two tricks.  Free will then would be an illusion too!