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Why does your God permit suffering?

 
 
Reply Sat 16 Aug, 2014 08:52 am
for the theists among us, if you have a belief in a God or gods. Based on the current condition of the world, why do you suppose he allows suffering?

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Type: Discussion • Score: 7 • Views: 2,416 • Replies: 21

 
Buttermilk
 
  1  
Reply Sun 17 Aug, 2014 02:10 am
@Smileyrius,
I'm not a theist, I'm an agnostic-theist, but I'm leaning towards deism so to answer this question I would say the following:

First off we need to define what suffering is to begin to answer this question, but if we go with the standard definition of suffering as as an experience of unpleasantness and aversion associated with the perception of harm or threat of harm in an individual we can begin to discuss the question at hand.

-God allows suffering because to suffer is also to experience reality. For example physical pain in the form of a toothache that feels severe to the point of describing it as "suffering" could be the body's way of telling you, you have an infection.

-God allows suffering for the development of moral subjectivity and to equip people to understand the difference between right and wrong, good and evil.

I even personally have an issue with saying that God "allows" because to allow something is to willfully decide to not intervene. I would say the universe proceeds from which it began and that all actions and inactions are products of causality.

0 Replies
 
dalehileman
 
  1  
Reply Sun 17 Aug, 2014 11:00 am
@Smileyrius,
An apodictical existential pantheist replies, it's because She can't do the impossible. Things are the way they are because that's the way they have to be in order to avoid contradiction and paradox
luismtzzz
 
  1  
Reply Sun 17 Aug, 2014 11:57 am
@Smileyrius,
I am a catholic. I do not think god is the cause of our sufferings. Here is a quote from genius Alan Moore from his acclaimed graphic novel Watchmen.

The vigilante Rorschach talking to his psychiatrist while in prision:

Quote:

Watchmen ("In Prison" Monologue)
Rorschach

You keep calling me Walter and I don’t like you. You’re fat. Wealthy. Your liberal sensibilities, what you call passion, wanting to protect and understand the guilty, this rotting society, what it calls rehabilitation. Nothing short of compromise. There are men in here with behavior more extreme than mine, Doctor. Of course, they’re not famous, are they?

You want to know about Rorschach? I’ll tell you about Rorschach. Once a man has seen society’s black underbelly, he can never turn his back on it. Never pretend, like you do, that it doesn’t exist, no matter who orders him to look the other way.

We don’t do this “thing” ’cause it’s permitted. We do it because we have to. We do it because we’re compelled.

I was investigating a kidnap case. Blair Roach. 6 year old girl.

I was young then. Too soft on criminals.

I let them live.

Broke a man’s arm to get a tip. Led me to the missing girl’s location. I knew the girl was here, but when I searched the place, I saw nothing.

And then I found her.

It was dark when the murderer got back. As dark as it gets.

Men get arrested. Dogs get put down.

The tremors of impact shook my arm. Warm blood splashed my face. Whatever was left of Walter Kovacs died that night with that little girl. From then on, there was only Rorschach.

See Doctor, God didn’t kill that little girl. Fate didn’t butcher her, destiny didn’t feed her to those dogs. If God saw what any of us did that night, he didn’t seem to mind. From then on, I knew: God doesn’t make the world this way. We do.
Romeo Fabulini
 
  1  
Reply Sun 17 Aug, 2014 12:22 pm
The earth is a TESTING GROUND so no wonder things get a little rough at times-

GOLD BERET
Just as Army Regiments award the beige beret (SAS), green beret beret (US Special Forces) and red beret (Paras), so does God award us a "gold beret" if we pass his test.

The only success that matters is getting through the Life Assault Course:-
"All creation groans in pain from the beginning til now" (Rom 8:22)

And it sorts the men from the boys:-
"We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God" (Acts 14:22)

Jesus welcomes anybody into his squad:-
"Whoever comes to me I'll never turn away" (John 6:37)

And he'll lead by example:-
"To follow me you must carry your own cross daily" (Luke 9:23)

The C.O. shows no favouritism:-
"God didn't spare his own son" (Rom 8:32)

So if he can hack it so can we:-
"We share in Jesus's sufferings in order to share in his glory" (Rom 8:17)

And others have stayed the course too:-
"I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith" (2 Tim 4:7)

Then if we qualify we win the Gold Beret:-
"Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life.." (James 1:12)

But for those who want a soft, easy religion, Christianity's not for them -
"They prefer teachers who only tell them what they want to hear" (2 Tim 4:3)
Waddya say sergeant?

"Take the pain! TAKE THE PAIN!"
http://i53.photobucket.com/albums/g64/PoorOldSpike/Barnes.jpg
Smileyrius
 
  2  
Reply Tue 26 Aug, 2014 08:46 am
@Romeo Fabulini,
so what you are saying is that your God does not just permit suffering, he needs us to suffer and designed the earth this way.

It is hard to fathom why so many today are angry at such a god.

For what reason does God need to test us? would you say it is absolutely necessary?
0 Replies
 
lovegroved
 
  1  
Reply Tue 26 Aug, 2014 09:06 am
@Smileyrius,
He doesn't allow suffering because the evidence suggests there isn't a"personal" god that is influencing earthly affairs on a macro level. I would humbly suggest that what you have quoted supports this theory.
0 Replies
 
lovegroved
 
  2  
Reply Tue 26 Aug, 2014 09:10 am
@Romeo Fabulini,
The last para supports my theory that there isn't a personal god interfering on a macro level.
0 Replies
 
Smileyrius
 
  2  
Reply Tue 26 Aug, 2014 10:03 am
@luismtzzz,
An interesting quote, rather than question the cause of suffering, why do you think he allows it to happen?
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Woman4Christ
 
  1  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 05:04 am
@Smileyrius,
I'd recommend Kenneth Hagins the believers authority.
Krumple
 
  0  
Reply Fri 17 Oct, 2014 05:14 am
@Woman4Christ,
Woman4Christ wrote:

I'd recommend Kenneth Hagins the believers authority.


Shouldn't a book titled "Believers Authority" be a red flag for every christian? But then again I don't ever expect Christians to be consistent with their beliefs.
0 Replies
 
Squeakybro
 
  1  
Reply Sat 1 Nov, 2014 05:47 pm
Suffering is the only reward for rebellion. Don't rebel don't suffer.
Smileyrius
 
  2  
Reply Thu 20 Nov, 2014 07:27 pm
@Squeakybro,
Do those who live in harmony with Gods teachings not suffer?
0 Replies
 
neologist
 
  1  
Reply Thu 20 Nov, 2014 07:44 pm
@Squeakybro,
Reading
0 Replies
 
neologist
 
  3  
Reply Thu 20 Nov, 2014 08:14 pm
A lot of interesting opinion here:
http://able2know.org/topic/70309-1
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JohnBaner01
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Mar, 2015 05:32 pm
@Smileyrius,
Most suffering is either caused by human greed or a lack of love from humans. In other words it's because of human free will. The real cause of suffering is not God but our ungodly behaviour.
JohnBaner01
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Mar, 2015 05:33 pm
@Smileyrius,
Plus, God works and makes things better over time so just because things seem bad at the moment, it may be for the better in the end.
neologist
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Mar, 2015 06:55 pm
@JohnBaner01,
JohnBaner01 wrote:
Plus, God works and makes things better over time. .. .
How would you know that?

And, in what way does God make things better?
Are we better off today?
JohnBaner01
 
  1  
Reply Tue 31 Mar, 2015 10:11 am
@neologist,
It's what happens through time. Think about it, from atoms to molecules to DNA to cellular organisms to multi cellular organisms to bacteria to species, matter becomes larger and more stable over time. This process of enlarging of matter over time is what God does and may be called God himself. This culminated in human beings having co-operative and loving instincts which allows humans to work together, in harmony with one another. However, this has not happened due to the issues that consciousness has brought with it such as anger, ego-centricity etc. These issues were not caused by God but rather are a by product of the invention of the brain.

As I said earlier, most of our problems are created by the negative aspects of human beings. Our greed does not solve poverty, our selfishness and pre-occupation with ourselves causes problems with the environment, our angers, jealousies, competitiveness etc. cause war, terrorism, etc. If one thinks about it, if every human being lived in accordance with the ideals, then the world would have few problems. Thus, I think I have shown that we are not in a bad state because of God or his creation of humans but rather as a by product of it. The world is imperfect because of ourselves.
neologist
 
  0  
Reply Tue 31 Mar, 2015 12:20 pm
@JohnBaner01,
Are you saying that, in spite of our greed, our selfishness, our love of pleasure, our disrespect for the environment, and our religious violence, we are better off?
0 Replies
 
 

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