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The Question Of Good And Evil

The Question of Good and Evil (As Pertaining to God)

Many people over the past centuries of monotheism have argued that if God were perfect and good, then God would not or should not have created a universe arguably filled with evil. Furthermore, they question why a good God, would use seemingly evil methods, such as war, genocide, and plagues, to judge the world. Finally they argue, how could a good God, create an evil being such as Satan.

The problem with this is quite simply, a misapplication of the terms “Good” and “Evil”. First, these terms are used incorrectly when describing objects. An object or individual is not good or evil, rather they are capable of actions, that can be described as good or evil.

In addition, good and evil are relative terms, and subjective in nature. What is “good” for one person, may appear “evil” to another.

Given each individuals limited perspective of the world, it would therefore seem impossible for there to be a fair, and objective way to determine morality. Well, what about the hypothetical God? In theory, God is omniscient, and therefore able to perceive everything at an objective level. God would therefore be able to determine the overall benefits and consequences of all actions.

Since this hypothetical God also, supposedly created the universe with some divine, benevolent purpose, this God would be able to decide whether these actions served the eventual purpose. Thus, this hypothetical God would make the best judge of what “good” and “evil” in an objective sense would be, assuming Good were to describe things that moved the universe closer to a state of benevolent perfection or whatever.

As for whether God is inherently good or evil, the correct answer is neither. God is benevolent, and uses actions that from the relative standpoint of an individual on Earth, could be described as either good or evil. For God, it is not a matter of doing only good, but it is a matter of maximizing the overall positive nature of the universe, even at the expense of a few individuals, if it means that in the long run, human society will improve, and progress towards its higher purpose.

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Page last modified on July 23, 2014, at 03:09 PM