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Author Topic:   Is Evolution the Work of Satan?
Stephen Push
Member (Idle past 2967 days)
Posts: 140
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 10-08-2010


Message 46 of 104 (589582)
11-03-2010 12:56 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by jar
11-03-2010 12:47 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
I can see no evidence of "evil" or "natural evil" in evolution.

If you go back and read my post carefully, you will see that:

1) I agree that there is no evidence of intentional evil in evolution.

2) The term "natural evil" as used in my post does not mean what you think it does.

Edited by Stephen Push, : No reason given.

Edited by Stephen Push, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by jar, posted 11-03-2010 12:47 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 47 by jar, posted 11-03-2010 12:58 PM Stephen Push has not yet responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 47 of 104 (589583)
11-03-2010 12:58 PM
Reply to: Message 46 by Stephen Push
11-03-2010 12:56 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
If Natural Evil does not mean evil then we are simply left with ... natural.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
This message is a reply to:
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Havok
Junior Member (Idle past 2888 days)
Posts: 4
From: USA
Joined: 10-25-2010


Message 48 of 104 (589587)
11-03-2010 1:09 PM
Reply to: Message 17 by marc9000
11-01-2010 8:24 PM


Paul only points to the genesis account as proof of original sin. He does not make any claims of his own, his assertion rests solely on the genesis story. The validity of genesis's support of original sin is being discussed here:
http://www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dm.cgi?control=msg&t=15025
This message is a reply to:
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Stephen Push
Member (Idle past 2967 days)
Posts: 140
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 10-08-2010


Message 49 of 104 (589596)
11-03-2010 1:31 PM
Reply to: Message 45 by jar
11-03-2010 12:47 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
jar,

Thank you for the link to your earlier post.

IMHO GOD designed a universe that is, unlike the individuals in it, self healing.

The current scientific consensus is that the universe is moving inexorably toward greater entropy. But who knows, maybe everything will start over in another universe. However, the theory of multiple universes, if true, would undercut one of the currently fashionable arguments for the existence of God.

So the system GOD created is pretty good.

An omnipotent being might be expected to do better than "pretty good."

Yes, when I look around, I see the product of a Good GOD.

My point is not that God is necessarily bad (or necessarily non-existent). My point is that he cannot be good AND omnipotent AND omniscient.

Edited by Stephen Push, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by jar, posted 11-03-2010 12:47 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 50 by jar, posted 11-03-2010 1:34 PM Stephen Push has responded
 Message 52 by GDR, posted 11-03-2010 8:57 PM Stephen Push has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 30935
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 50 of 104 (589597)
11-03-2010 1:34 PM
Reply to: Message 49 by Stephen Push
11-03-2010 1:31 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
My point is not that God is necessarily bad (or necessarily non-existent). My point is that he cannot be good AND omnipotent AND omniscient.
jar,

Thank you for the link to earlier post.

IMHO GOD designed a universe that is, unlike the individuals in it, self healing.

The current scientific consensus is that the universe is moving inexorably toward greater entropy. But who knows, may everything will start over in another universe. However, the theory of multiple universes, if true, would undercut one of the currently fashionable arguments for the existence of God.

So the system GOD created is pretty good.

An omnipotent being might be expected to do better than "pretty good."

Yes, when I look around, I see the product of a Good GOD.

My point is not that God is necessarily bad (or necessarily non-existent). My point is that he cannot be good AND omnipotent AND omniscient.

And if you find me making such claims then perhaps you can address that then.

HOWEVER, the topic of the thread was about evolution and whether evolution is evil.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
This message is a reply to:
 Message 49 by Stephen Push, posted 11-03-2010 1:31 PM Stephen Push has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 51 by Stephen Push, posted 11-03-2010 1:45 PM jar has acknowledged this reply

  
Stephen Push
Member (Idle past 2967 days)
Posts: 140
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 10-08-2010


Message 51 of 104 (589600)
11-03-2010 1:45 PM
Reply to: Message 50 by jar
11-03-2010 1:34 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
jar wrote:

HOWEVER, the topic of the thread was about evolution and whether evolution is evil.

No, the topic of the thread is whether the suffering caused by evolution negates the concept of an omnipotent, omniscient, benevolent God.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 50 by jar, posted 11-03-2010 1:34 PM jar has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 53 by Jon, posted 11-03-2010 11:09 PM Stephen Push has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.9


(2)
Message 52 of 104 (589695)
11-03-2010 8:57 PM
Reply to: Message 49 by Stephen Push
11-03-2010 1:31 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
Stephen Push writes:

The current scientific consensus is that the universe is moving inexorably toward greater entropy. But who knows, maybe everything will start over in another universe. However, the theory of multiple universes, if true, would undercut one of the currently fashionable arguments for the existence of God.

Interesting that you should say that. The latest copy of Scientific American which showed up in my mail box last week had this on the front cover: "Hidden Worlds of Dark Matter - An entire universe may be interwoven silently with our own". This has been the Christian position for centuries, although obviously the writers of the article would envision a different universe than I might, but the belief in either one is just that: a belief.

Of course Christianity holds the position that at the end of time, (at least as we know it), our universe and that other universe, (which Christian's view as God's universe), will be united and evil will be no more. The point is of course that in the end the plan is to wind up with a one more complete universe that doesn't have the flaws that are causing the problems now.

I look at it this way although I don't know how many other Christians would agree with me. I agree that it is conjecture and that I may well be out in left field, however, I do believe that I am being consistent with scripture, science and history.

God has created a world that has evolved physically over millions of years to what it is today. Once physical evolution came to a specific point God introduced into at least one of his evolved species, and in particular into the human species, a higher level of consciousness. Since that time that same consciousness, that included a sense of morality and an ability to experience emotions, has been going through an evolutionary process itself. I believe that physical evolution is a guided process and I believe that God also intervenes in our spiritual growth as well, with the most obvious example being the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus.

I think that I can give one example of the spiritual growth I'm talking about. It was less than 2000 years ago that a Sunday afternoon's entertainment with the wife and kids was to go down to the Coliseum to watch people being killed and eaten by wild animals or to watch prisoners fight to the death. That was in what was arguably the most advanced civilization of the day. With all the horrors that still exist we have at least evolved beyond that.

It even applies to natural disasters. Sure earthquakes still happen but people have evolved to the point that we are now able to a large degree to be able to mitigate the damage as well as to bring aid to those affected far better than we were ever able to in the past. The point being that God has created a world where he has involved His created beings in the creation of the next generation but has also created beings with the joint responsibility of making this world a place that continues to evolve into a world where there is more and more joy and less and less sorrow.

I think that you have very effectively pointed out what is the biggest difficulty we Christians have to face. I have had to come to terms with it in different ways. One way is the way that I just talked about. I think that the way that impacts me most however is the fact that Im a dad, and grandfather for that matter. I experience real joy in being a Dad but in that I also experience real risk. I havent had to experience the loss of a child and I pray that I will go before any of them do. I also tried to be a good dad but I also know that these kids, could have become rapists or murderers, instead of the wonderful people they are. I think that my benevolent God takes similar risks with us and with all His creation.

In the end I believe that there is ultimate justice and eternal joy. Does that make God omnipotent; I dont know but it is enough for me. I hope that answers your question as to how I square the conundrum of an omnipotent and benevolent god with evil and natural disasters.

Edited by GDR, : No reason given.

Edited by GDR, : sp


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)
This message is a reply to:
 Message 49 by Stephen Push, posted 11-03-2010 1:31 PM Stephen Push has responded

Replies to this message:
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Jon
Inactive Member


Message 53 of 104 (589709)
11-03-2010 11:09 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by Stephen Push
11-03-2010 1:45 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
jar writes:

HOWEVER, the topic of the thread was about evolution and whether evolution is evil.

No, the topic of the thread is whether the suffering caused by evolution negates the concept of an omnipotent, omniscient, benevolent God.

So the title itself was just a faade?

Jon


Check out Apollo's Temple!
This message is a reply to:
 Message 51 by Stephen Push, posted 11-03-2010 1:45 PM Stephen Push has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 54 by Stephen Push, posted 11-04-2010 12:29 AM Jon has acknowledged this reply

  
Stephen Push
Member (Idle past 2967 days)
Posts: 140
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 10-08-2010


Message 54 of 104 (589716)
11-04-2010 12:29 AM
Reply to: Message 53 by Jon
11-03-2010 11:09 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
Jon writes:

So the title itself was just a faade?

Read my posts and decide for yourself.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 53 by Jon, posted 11-03-2010 11:09 PM Jon has acknowledged this reply

  
Stephen Push
Member (Idle past 2967 days)
Posts: 140
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 10-08-2010


Message 55 of 104 (589720)
11-04-2010 12:56 AM
Reply to: Message 52 by GDR
11-03-2010 8:57 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
GDR writes:

In the end I believe that there is ultimate justice and eternal joy. Does that make God omnipotent; I dont know but it is enough for me. I hope that answers your question as to how I square the conundrum of an omnipotent and benevolent god with evil and natural disasters.

Thank you for your thoughtful responses to my questions. I wish I could share your optimism, but I don't believe that progress is inevitable or God-given. The 20th Century was the bloodiest in history. The Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 was the deadliest in history. New infectious diseases emerge, while old ones develop resistance to our antibiotics. I think we mortals must create our own peace, justice, and joy.

Thank you again for sharing your ideas. Best wishes to you and your family.

Steve


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 Message 52 by GDR, posted 11-03-2010 8:57 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
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GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 56 of 104 (591107)
11-11-2010 5:53 PM
Reply to: Message 55 by Stephen Push
11-04-2010 12:56 AM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
Stephen Push writes:

Thank you for your thoughtful responses to my questions. I wish I could share your optimism, but I don't believe that progress is inevitable or God-given. The 20th Century was the bloodiest in history. The Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 was the deadliest in history. New infectious diseases emerge, while old ones develop resistance to our antibiotics. I think we mortals must create our own peace, justice, and joy.

I know that you kinda closed off this discussion but my mind keeps going back to it, as the squaring of the idea of an omnipotent God with a benevolent God in the face of suffering is not an easy question to answer.

I still go back to the fact that after tragedies such as the tsunami you mentioned, Id still like to point out that there is the good that comes from the humanitarian response to it. Even a hundred years ago the mortality rate from childhood diseases was much much higher than it is now because of advances in medicine.

However, there is something else that Ive been thinking about. Why is it that we see the results of that tsunami as a tragedy? Why are we bothered by the suffering that resulted? As North Americans neither of us would have even known that it happened if it wasnt for the media. In all likelihood it didnt involve anyone that we knew. It likely didnt have any direct impact on our lives other than that we found it upsetting. Why did we feel compelled that something should be done about it and that the something that should be done should involve us as individuals?

It seems to me that it only makes sense if there is something other than just socialization and natural selection involved that leads us to our altruistic views. If that is the case, which of course I do, then it seems reasonable to conclude that whatever or whoever is behind that sense of altruism would hold at least the same level of compassion and caring that we do.

If again that is the case, then I believe that it is sensible to assume that the world is the way it is for reasons that are beyond our understanding, and that we can actually have trust and confidence that in the end things will be made right and that we have a benevolent Creator. I see God as being all powerful from my vantage point as a human in our 4 dimensional universe, but beyond that I have no vantage point on which to base such a term.

Edited by GDR, : No reason given.


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 Message 55 by Stephen Push, posted 11-04-2010 12:56 AM Stephen Push has responded

Replies to this message:
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 Message 58 by Panda, posted 11-11-2010 6:43 PM GDR has responded
 Message 59 by Stephen Push, posted 11-11-2010 8:42 PM GDR has responded

    
frako
Member
Posts: 2813
From: slovenija
Joined: 09-04-2010


Message 57 of 104 (591108)
11-11-2010 6:01 PM
Reply to: Message 56 by GDR
11-11-2010 5:53 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
It seems to me that it only makes sense if there is something other than just socialization and natural selection involved that leads us to our altruistic views. If that is the case, which of course I do, then it seems reasonable to conclude that whatever or whoever is behind that sense of altruism would hold at least the same level of compassion and caring that we do.

If again that is the case, then I believe that it is sensible to assume that the world is the way it is for reasons that are beyond our understanding, and that we can actually have trust and confidence that in the end things will be made right and that we have a benevolent Creator. I see God as being all powerful from my vantage point as a human in our 4 dimensional universe, but beyond that I have no vantage point on which to base such a term.

Atcualy you do not, it is alyo possible that god is an evil sadistic bastard and gave us that altruistic view so he can hurt us too when he hurts some one else. And you whorship this bastard !!


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Panda
Member (Idle past 1820 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 58 of 104 (591120)
11-11-2010 6:43 PM
Reply to: Message 56 by GDR
11-11-2010 5:53 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
GDR writes:

It seems to me that it only makes sense if there is something other than just socialization and natural selection involved that leads us to our altruistic views. If that is the case, which of course I do, then it seems reasonable to conclude that whatever or whoever is behind that sense of altruism would hold at least the same level of compassion and caring that we do.


Is there a logical fallacy based around hope?
If so, then I think you have committed it.
Unfortunately, hope is not enough to successfully justify your position.

There are also other problems with your statement:
"It seems to me": argument from ignorance.
"that it only makes sense": argument from incredulity.
"whoever is behind that sense of altruism would hold at least the same level of compassion and caring that we do": non sequitor.
There are probably others.

But whatever gets you through your day, I guess.


Always remember: Quidquid latine dictum sit altum viditur
This message is a reply to:
 Message 56 by GDR, posted 11-11-2010 5:53 PM GDR has responded

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Stephen Push
Member (Idle past 2967 days)
Posts: 140
From: Virginia, USA
Joined: 10-08-2010


Message 59 of 104 (591133)
11-11-2010 8:42 PM
Reply to: Message 56 by GDR
11-11-2010 5:53 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
GDR writes:

It seems to me that it only makes sense if there is something other than just socialization and natural selection involved that leads us to our altruistic views. If that is the case, which of course I do, then it seems reasonable to conclude that whatever or whoever is behind that sense of altruism would hold at least the same level of compassion and caring that we do.

Natural selection and cultural evolution explain -- without the need to invoke a supernatural being -- why humans are sometimes altruistic. I say "sometimes" because humans are also sometimes selfish, callous, and murderous. I see no reason, other than wishful thinking, to give God credit for our better nature while shielding Him from any association with our dark side.

Edited by Stephen Push, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 56 by GDR, posted 11-11-2010 5:53 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 61 by GDR, posted 11-11-2010 8:51 PM Stephen Push has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.9


Message 60 of 104 (591134)
11-11-2010 8:48 PM
Reply to: Message 58 by Panda
11-11-2010 6:43 PM


Re: Powerful, Wise & Benevolent God?
Panda writes:

There are also other problems with your statement:
"It seems to me": argument from ignorance.
"that it only makes sense": argument from incredulity.
"whoever is behind that sense of altruism would hold at least the same level of compassion and caring that we do": non sequitor.
There are probably others.

When we discuss things on this forum that go beyond what we can sort out empirically there are no terms that seem to be acceptable. What terms should be used for something that you believe but which there is no empirical evidence.

I don't see the last statement as being a non sequitor as the question that was being addressed is how one as an individual deals with the idea of an omnipotent God with a benevolent God in the face of the suffering that we see in the world.

I was answering the question of how I deal with the issue. Can I prove it? No! Do I expect to convince anyone? No. I am just expressing how I deal with it personally in answer to the question that was asked.

Panda writes:

But whatever gets you through your day, I guess.

Just a tad condescending however, I am just trying to sort out my beliefs about the truth of our existence as we all do. We obviously have come to different conclusions.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 58 by Panda, posted 11-11-2010 6:43 PM Panda has responded

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