March 28, 2004

Item 1:
A "good", omniscient, omnipotent God should tilt the universe toward "good". Why wouldn't God? Incidentally, this implies that God cares ... something we have perhaps irretrievably interlinked with the concept of being "good".

Item 2:
A "good" God should have no capacity to understand "evil". Why should God?

Item 3:
Yet "evil" exists, and in our minds frequently appears at best to be balanced out, at worst to be winning. Within standard logic structures, this does not make sense.

Easiest way out is to assume God does not exist. In some aspects this can also be the hardest way: since it removes any concept of intercessionary between us and the consequences of our actions.

Middle way out is to extrapolate some "evil" entity: but if God is to remain omniscient and omnipotent, in some obscure way that "evil" entity is actually performing God's will. Within concepts of overall neutrality or even uncaringness of the divine force, no problem. Within an unquestioned a priori that God is "good", theology comes up with variations of the suffering-on-earth leading to rewarding afterlife theme. Whether or not the suffering seems to be justified by the nature of one's actions, enduring them and keeping faith is required to be rewarded, and since the reward frequently cannot be seen while living, a positive afterlife is postulated.

(Within necessity, Judas did what was necessary for the divinely willed plotline to play out. Within atemporal omniscience, Judas' actions were inevitable. Within free will, Judas chose his actions: and thus must be punished for them. In this is the heart of the great betrayal of Iblis by God. Required never to set any above God, required to bow before man: what is someone, utterly obedient, to do in the face of conflicting demands? Within the structure set up by God, how could Iblis have acted otherwise than to rebel against God?)

Hardest way out is to try to conceive that the "good/evil" polarity does not have meaning except within human dimensions ... that there is absolutely nothing requiring (outside human expectations and human wish-fulfillment) that God be "good".

Freedom. It is a terrifying gift.

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