Because there really is such a thing as evil.
Hey friend. This sounds like you may be going through a rough time or experienced something bad. I hope everything is okay.
Thanks mate. I’m alright. God bless.
Always remember there’s also such thing as good too. And it will win out over evil.
Since this is the philosophy forum, do you mind if I play devil’s advocate for a second?
Augustine asserted that evil is the privation of good – that is, the privation of God.
So, then: your reason to believe in the existence of God is the existence of the privation of God?
In other-word’s i would be making a circular argument. But Augustine is describing evil in relation to God. However, i am saying that i have identified evil in my personal experiences. if i experience evil, then that is what it is. And if there is evil then there must be such a thing as good. I know it only because i have experienced it. One could then put that experience in metaphysical terms and say i have experience a lack of something, and that something is what we describe as good or God.
On the other hand one could say there is no evil.
Well, for the opposite of something to exist, the original must exist…
Nope. Just asking how we should understand ‘evil’, and thereby, understand God.
Well… ‘yes’ and ‘no’. Sometimes, we describe things in terms of what they are and what they are not:
- the Pittsburgh Pirates are black and gold. They are not “red and blue” or “orange and black” and all other combinations of team colors.
- the Pittsburgh Steelers are “Big Ben” and the “Killer B’s”. They are not any of the other nicknames of NFL team members.
Here’s the thing: in the context of our discussion, Augustine’s assertion is that God is all things and evil is the absence of all things. So, if we were to continue the bullet point listing in the pattern from above, we would have:
- God is all good.
- Evil is … nothing.
- God is all love.
- Evil is … nothing.
You get the point: God is. Evil is what is not.
And, following Augustine, I might reply, “you have experienced the lack of something, not a thing in itself.”
Perhaps we’re closer to the same thought than we might expect. Would you say, then, that “if there is the lack that I’ve experienced, then there must be such a thing as what I have not experienced”?
Yep… I think that, unless I’m misunderstanding you, then we’re saying the same thing!
Or, perhaps, evil is no thing.
That is correct. Augustine had been a Manichean before he became a Christian, and he was refuting Manicheanism, which was fundamentally dualistic and taught that Evil existed in and of itself, in opposition to God, and that the material world was Evil, and the spiritual plane was Good.
How does he refute the existence of evil?
Too complicated for a forum post, but these articles will give you a good idea:
Well, I have an argument against that. If evil is only privation of good then extreme evil should not exist since existing is good. Suppose you are in Hell. Now suppose that God increase the fire into infinite degree. Does infinite degree of fire exist? Of course yes.
…and you read the forum?
You’re entitled to your opinion but you could express it in a less offensive manner.
Also why are you on these forums?
I know someone like that
This is a straw-man. God created us to give us heaven, but since heaven is quite literal love itself, we must choose to love perfectly. Now, you might think this is stupid, but you cannot even identify an objective standard by which to judge something as stupid. I mean at the end the day you think it might possibly be true that we all exist in your head and you take that idea so seriously that i think you would prefer it to be true. In fact all you have done since you have been on this forum is dictate your preferences. So forgive me for being direct, but i do not consider you to be a reasonable person or the go to person for reliable well-reasoned arguments. At least Christians have logical arguments for what they believe.
Wow and I was told I was the rude athiest on this site lol. Seriously though it’s one thing to criticize someone’s belief, but hatefulness and name calling are not right and shouldn’t be done.
Oh I agree with you about religion beliefs. I’m an athiest. I’m just saying the people on here are nice people and aren’t stupid.
No, it’s what you believe to be true or want to believe i suspect. If you had good intentions on this forum, you just would not do what you just did. You would have presented a well-reasoned argument against the OP. You didn’t do that because you have no argument. You just don’t like Christianity. And if that’s the case, what are you doing here, because we are not particularly interested in your opinion.