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?

 


The problem of evil in the light of a God who necessarily exists

We have the argument that nothing can exist without a necessary being - being that needs nothing to create it. Religion says this being is God. It is related to the idea that nothing should exist and all things exist for God made them from nothing. God did not make himself but he just exists.  The idea is that the only being that must exist is God and anything else like the world or your dinner does not have to exist.  So what must exist is responsible for the existence of everything else.
 
The problem of evil comes into all this. In reality there is no problem of evil. Evil simply contradicts and refutes the existence of a perfect God.  But let us leave that aside.
 
The necessary being argument when put together correctly assumes that what we need to explain is how good things can come from nothing. Evil is anti-being and thus if any allegedly created thing were evil that would refute the argument.

The necessary being argument assumes that the being makes only good and does not make evil.  Does that not make sense?
 
The Christian answer is that evil is really just good that is in the wrong place and time.  It is anti-existence in the sense that the good is using good against itself.  So it is not the thing that is evil but the way it happens. Saying that is evil in itself for depression for example really is just evil and is not something that is out of place and time. Experience of evil does not feel like something that is merely in the wrong place.  The argument assumes that evil is not real but it is up to hard evidence and experience to determine that. It is evil to merely assume that. A theory of goodness that calls on you to become evil in such a fundamental thing is an evil not a good.
 
The notion of God being evil or a little evil in his intention would ruin the notion that God needs no explanation and the universe does. If God is perfectly simple then he needs no explanation we are told. He cannot be perfectly simple if he is even a little evil. We would need an explanation for why he suffers a defect.  He has the defect meaning something is bigger than him if that is why he cannot fix the defect. If God is evil or evil damages God then evil is much the same as a God in its own right.  It is foolish to risk antagonising it.
 
God lets us suffer and do great harm. Religion says he is only being a good parent and refusing to protect us from all evil for it is bad for us to be sheltered all the time. We need our space to make our own mistakes and learn from them. Good parents do shelter their children all the time and letting them take risks at times is a form of sheltering. Being sheltered from being sheltered too much is still being sheltered. Real parents communicate their love to their children. God leaves us suffering and has no concern for helping us understand why. It is an insult for people to tell us he loves us. Who are they to say? That is no good when God can tell us himself and only allow suffering when we understand why it is happening. 

Some say, "A parent being with you supporting you to shelter you from the feeling you are alone is still sheltering you." That is true for being supported like that is more realistic than trying to stop a child ever from feeling bad.  You know you cannot do that.  Sheltering leads to being spoiled no matter what form the sheltering takes.  As God necessarily
 
Even if God is impersonal and does not really love anybody or anything but just supports existence in so far as evil is anti-being then evil would refute even that kind of God. God would be the wrong word for the being.

The argument from necessity is based on a bad view of evil as a mere lack or abstract judgement on how things are working.  The argument is itself evil.  And the fact is that evil while it can be directed by people seems to have a mind of its own.  So what is doing the directing that we are not involved in?  If there is a God then it is him.  If there is no God then evil is just another feature of evolution with its red in blood and claw way of working.  Evil cannot be separated from how it acts directed.  Religion does just that and ends up treating it like a thing after all.