This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

Comment

← Intelligent Design and the cruelty of nature

godzillatemple's Avatar Jump to comment 20 by godzillatemple

There is a fundamental logical/moral dilemna there. If you are going to argue that the universe is cold and indifferent and doesn't care...then on what basis do you make the moral judgement that it contains badness that negates a 'good' God ?

I'm not sure I can fully (or even partially, to be honest) answer your question, but I think it might depend on whether you are talking about "god" as defined in the abstract by theologians or the "god" described in scriptures and embraced by most world religions.

The abstract god is one who is mysterious and unknowable and who does whatever he does for his own reasons, although we are expected to accept that whatever he does must be "good" and "moral" by definition. Your argument goes toward this concept of god. If God defines what is "good" and "moral," how can we argue that anything he created is "bad" or "immoral" since those terms are only defined with reference to god's actions in the first place.

If you look at the way god is actually depicted in scriptures, however, there are numerous descriptions of what constitutes "goodness" and "morality" in his view. "Loving thy neighbor as thyself" is "good." "Committing adultery" is "bad." Similarly, God is described in the scriptures as being a loving god who cares about all his creations, not just man. Since, according to the very scriptures that purport to support the existence of god in the first place, there are clearly defined descriptions of what "good" and "bad" actually mean to God, it is therefore possible to point out the contradictions between what the scriptures say is "good " and how the natural world actually operates.

It is therefore logically possible to state that, since the scriptures state that the world should be one way if there is a god and that evidence shows the world to not be this way, the god described by the scriptures must not really exist.

Hmmmmm... I'm not sure that came out exactly right, but hopefully you get my point. I'm not exactly Dostoevsky either.

Wed, 16 May 2012 14:18:26 UTC | #941844