Why is the problem of theodicy a problem?

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by wynn, Dec 28, 2012.

  1. Balerion Banned Banned

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    I'm not trying to offer an explanation beyond that. You never asked me for one, you never actually engaged in the discussion; you merely pointed out that you can't understand what anyone's talking about.


    No it doesn't. You only define happiness as something that is "madness" to strive for in the material world. That's not a definition of the concept itself, but a definition of where it can or cannot be found (but not really, since you only say it is "madness" to seek happiness in this world, not that it is impossible). That's like me asking you what the treasure is, and you telling me it's buried in your back yard. It doesn't even attempt to define the actual concept, let alone give an exact definition, as you claim to have done, but sets vague parameters for where it might exist.

    I did, I just can't see what your comments have to do with it.


    So you understood that he defines the Holocaust as an irredeemable evil that is, as you say, diametrically opposed to good, yet you still claim to have no understanding of what he considers good? I mean, am I supposed to take this BS seriously? You'd better come up with something better than that if you don't want everyone to realize you're just in another one of your intellectual holding patterns.
     
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  3. Balerion Banned Banned

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    Might appear twice.

    I never made any attempt to explain the concept. I simply said that the author of the quote assumed a common understanding of it. And as I said before, you seem to be the only one struggling with it.

    It does not. All you've done is vaguely outline where it might or might not be found, not the concept itself (and certainly not "exactly defined" as you claimed previously). It's like if I asked you what the treasure was, and you respond that it's buried in my backyard. That is not a definition of the concept.

    Of course I did. What does that have to do with what you wrote?

    So you understand that he defines the Holocaust "et al" as irredeemable evils that could not possibly serve some greater good, and you understand that such suffering is diametrically opposed to happiness, yet you still claim not only that he doesn't attempt to define the concept, but that you have no conception of it in this context? I mean, are we supposed to take this seriously? I think you'd better take another tack if you don't want everyone to see that you're just in another one of your intellectual holding patterns.

    Of course, you could always show some integrity and drop the ruse. The conversation is clearly over your head, but everyone starts somewhere. You'd probably learn something if you weren't so busy trying to stall things.
     
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  5. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    sure
    hence the fumbling ...

    on the contrary, the absence of clarification is the weak point of both his and your arguments

    yet you still continue to fumble with even the hint of the general direction of this so-called common knowledge.

    Needless to say, if "goodness" is a value that automatically grants a uniform comprehension of its true and valid application, it would certainly make it a most unique value ....
    :shrug:



    On the contrary it provides parameters for discerning the nature of happiness (which in turn contextualizes the so-called problem of theodicy having with an all good god)



    its certainly doesn't appear that way



    Sure, you are both playing god as being necessarily incomplete however the vagueness (and inherent weakness) lies in his and your inability to explain precisely why this "evil" is "irredeemable" and "could not serve some greater good"

    IOW I think we can both now disregard your earlier statements about discussions of "happiness" having no bearing on the problem of theodicy as both you and the rabbi are presenting

    At the moment I am just trying to help you form a coherent argument by understanding the necessary terms that are integral to the points you are trying to make
     
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  7. Balerion Banned Banned

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    Um, no. If I had tried and failed, then it would be a fumble. I never tried, because, as I said, there's nothing to explain.


    You seem to think so, but at this point I'm not particularly concerned with your opinions on the matter. Also, there seems to be little question by anyone else as to what he means, so you continually appear to be the odd man out.

    Do you know what fumble means? I mean, seriously. I've never made an attempt to explain the value, since it's one that appears to be widely understood (present company excluded).

    Would it? Or would it just be one more concept defined by its context? It's the 21st century west, I think there is a fairly common general understanding of what constitutes good and what doesn't. If there wasn't such an understanding, then questions of theodicy would never arrive. Or, perhaps would never be answered, since no one would be able to settle on the definitions.

    Vaguely, sure. But your original contention was that it exactly defined happiness, which it does not. It doesn't even provide exact parameters. It's just another one of your wishy-washy "please bail me out, I'm in way over my head" fling-shit-on-the-wall-and-hope-something-sticks comments. There's no substance here, which is why you've already retreated from your original claim.

    You can do better than this, can't you?

    Evasion. You are borderline trolling here.

    You could say that I am, in the sense of God being a man-made construct and therefore not being a fully-realized character. I'm not sure how you could say the author is doing the same, however, unless you're suggesting that he means God is incomplete in terms of how he is being presented in scripture. Is that what you meant?

    No it isn't. You're trying to add levels of complexity to this argument that are not required. Do you have some sense of what evil is? Of why it would be irredeemable to kill millions, or why there is no greater good worth that much suffering? You must, since you're an adult human being living in the same or a similar society to the one that the author lives in, at the same time as the author is living. Your refusal to accept that there is some general consensus for these terms is of no consequence, because it, frankly, is bullshit. You clearly do know what he means by what he says. You're, again, trying to obfuscate the matter.

    This is another lie. I never said happiness had no bearing on the problem of theodicy. What I said was that happiness was not one of the terms we were discussing in the context of you allegedly not understanding their meaning. We had been discussing your lack of understanding of the concept of goodness prior to that, and "evil," but not "happiness." You brought up happiness as if I had failed to define it in my previous answer, when we weren't actually discussing it. Hence the remark about it being a non-sequitur. Unless, of course, you mistakenly interchanged the two words "happiness" and "goodness," which I guess wouldn't be terribly surprising.

    No you're not, you're just pretending not to know the definitions. Oh, and you're also trying to define them and failing miserably (see your piss-poor attempt earlier). You've once again bitten off more than you can chew, and you're trying to go in circles until I drop out of the debate so you can save face. Unfortunately, anyone reading this can already tell that you're full of crap, so you're only digging yourself a deeper whole by continuing this charade.
     
  8. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    in the midst of this tirade I missed your attempt to explain precisely why this "evil" is "irredeemable" and "could not serve some greater good"

    You just said this exact statement previously.

    Is it too much to assume that you know what you are talking about?

    :shrug:
     
  9. Balerion Banned Banned

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    I'm going to assume this is your white flag.

    Lightgigantic felled again by logic and reason.

    Run and hide in your hole, troll.
     
  10. lightgigantic Banned Banned

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    your fumble +3
    :shrug:
     
  11. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    There are numerous contradictions out there, and within one's own mind. And yet people leave many of those unaddressed.

    Why address theodicy?


    No, look deeper.

    There are all kinds of pseudo-intellectual attempts to explain this or that.
    Why bother with theodicy?

    What is so appealing about it?
    There are both theists as well as non-theists who grapple with the problem of theodicy. There must be something very appealing about it.



    Going with the usual one-lifetime conception, the free-will explanation makes for a reprehensively cruel outlook.
     
  12. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    But what is it that makes the problem of theodicy so appealing to look into?
    Why bother with it?

    How come people use some solutions to theodicy, or the lack of such solutions, as reason to dismiss belief in God, or as reason to declare that God doesn't exist?


    It seems to me that a strong sense of entitlement plays a central role in this appeal: "I am entitled that the Universe be the way I want it to be. And if the Universe is not the way I want it to be, I have the right to decry its maker, or declare that he doesn't exist. Also, if the Universe is not the way I want it to be, I am entitled to do everything in my power to get it to be the way I want it to be, regardless of what it takes, including murder."


    But I am sure there is more to it. This is what I am interested in.
     
  13. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    WAITING FOR ONE POST TO SHOW.



    This god, the god of that episode in the Bible, yes.

    Not necessarily God.
     
  14. Balerion Banned Banned

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    I honestly don't understand the question.

    I'll appeal to the readers of the thread: Did my previous answer not address this already?

    I'll try again: Theists address the contradictions because those contradictions are very important issues to them, as I said in my previous answer. Non-theists address theodicy for the same reasons they address theism in general, or Christianity, or Islam. I mean, are you really asking us why people talk about things? Your question can't be that shallow.
     
  15. Balerion Banned Banned

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    If you're asking why theodicy is a more important topic to some, I think the answer would be self-evident. Why do you pick flowers? There are plenty of people in the world, and a whole bunch of flowers, yet many people leave flowers absolutely untouched.

    I mean, seriously. What an inane question.
     
  16. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    That is not shallow at all. It's key.

    You don't talk because your tongue happens to be moving around in your mouth.

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  17. Balerion Banned Banned

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    It's also self-evident.

    Yeah, because that's what I said.

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  18. Syne Sine qua non Valued Senior Member

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    How would one lifetime in any way malign free will?
     
  19. kx000 Valued Senior Member

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    Who's who in all of this?

    Do people think that a system of want would identify a population of evil people?
     
  20. elte Valued Senior Member

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    I think Epicurus had it right about God. If there is God who is good and all powerful then evil wouldn't exist, and we wouldn't miss it. We wouldn't need it for comparison purposes in order to know what good is. Everyone would be good, and we would know that and enjoy the results.
     
  21. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    It doesn't malign free will.

    It makes for a cruel outlook.

    The one life-time conception would have us conclude, for example,
    that it is alright, just, good that infants are abused,
    or that life in this Universe is simply a dog-eat-dog life and that we must be at peace with that.

    I don't know how to come to the point of being at peace with either.
     
  22. wynn ˙ Valued Senior Member

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    Again, Epicurus' objection applies only in a one-lifetime conception.
     
  23. elte Valued Senior Member

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    We would have just one lifetime and it would always be good and enjoyable, and I guess, forever. Maybe we're both not looking at the same thing.

    Although, if Epicurus believed in free will in the absolute sense that I see religion give it, I disagree with him on that.
     

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