Against Theodicy

Howard Wettstein

in The Significance of Religious Experience

Published in print August 2012 | ISBN: 9780199841363
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199950003 | DOI:
Against Theodicy

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The problem of theodicy is a philosophical classic. This chapter argues that not only are the classical answers suspect, but that the question itself is problematic. In its classical form, the problem presupposes a conception of divinity—call it “perfect-being theology”—that does not go without saying. Even so, there is a significant gap between what the western religions seem to tell us about the reign of justice and what we seem to find in the world. The chapter argues that approaches to evil need to maintain focus on this discrepancy. This chapter concludes with some suggestions for the shape of “non-opiate” ways of coming to terms with evil.

Keywords: evil; suffering; Job; justice; Spinoza; theoretical problem of evil; existential problem of evil; sub specie aeternitatis; midrash

Chapter.  4658 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy

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