Sunday, January 14, 2018

Where Atheist and Theist Agree (to ignore the white elephant)

That mutual darling of believers and nonbelievers is possibly the most blatant logical mistake in the entire history of human thinking.

Childish, peevish, immature, coy, naive, bluffing, and the lazy person’s stargate to lifelong misery. It’s the unjustified, rarely questioned, but merely assumed existence or reality of evil by people of all persuasions about God. Hey, it’s the so called problem of evil.

Although, as you’ll soon see, the only real problem of evil is the avoidance of questions about what it means and what it assumes.

As Schopenhauer said about pantheism: you don't add anything to the world by calling it God. And you don't add anything to dislike by calling it evil.

To recognize anything to be evil, bad, or negative in any sense beyond human dislike requires a problem-free standard of goodness to contrast itself to and therefore justify it’s claimed reality, give it meaning and recognizability, as having a status beyond that dislike, however extreme, exceptionless, absolute, and dedicated that dislike might be on its own by the people doing the disliking.

Any claim that there is some kind of problem of evil steals its meaning through this lack of up front clarity about the meaning of the word, and without drawing attention to what it’s doing. It has to assume there is no problem in order to claim there’s a reliably identifiable problem of something called Evil.

But Evil can be recognized as Evil only in the light of a contrasting already-existing problem-free idea of goodness that gives it its notoriety as something that is somehow worse than the fact that people don't like it.

Without some concept of perfect goodness or goodness per se, you don't get to add the dramatic "evil" label to the fact that everyone dislikes it, and get out of that anything more than the fact that everyone dislikes it.

So the whole argument for the problem of evil is definitionally dependent, and contradicts its own intended conclusion by implicitly using goodness (the negation of the conclusion trying to be proved: that there is no such goodness) as an unstated premise.

It's something you do when you need evil so much, and have no basis for asserting it, that you're willing to steal its criterion of meaning from the concept of ultimate perfect goodness to even get to the first step of knowing that anything is evil in the first place.

The problem of evil is not an objection to the good at all. What makes something evil?

The problem of evil already assumes perfect goodness in asserting the recognizable existence of evil in the first place.

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