By Andrew Gleeson
A daunting Love substantially rethinks God and evil. It rejects theodicy and its impersonal perception of cause and morality. religion survives evil via a astounding love that resists philosophical explanation. Authors criticised contain Alvin Plantinga, Richard Swinburne, Marilyn McCord Adams, Peter van Inwagen, John Haldane, William Hasker.
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Additional resources for A Frightening Love: Recasting the Problem of Evil
As I wrote above, one might have expected this to make for a different argument than one relying on greater goods. One might have expected an argument to the effect that since God’s intentions were good – they were for an Eden, a world without evil – he is not to blame because human beings, exercising their gift of free will, have corrupted his plan. Free will features in the theodicies and defences considered so far as a justifying greater good. Presumably the alternative is some sort of principle to the effect that so long as God himself does not directly create evil – so long as all the evil in the world can be attributed to the free choices of created beings – then he is insured against blame for any evil in the world.
The source of both these necessities is love, perhaps a paradoxical love. Atheologists attack God in the name of morality. Theodicists choose to fight on the atheologists’ own battlefield: the tribunal of morality. I have argued that they lose. But the upshot of the atheologists’ win – that, basically, the world should not be here – is absurd. There is something too purist, something inhuman, about the whole idea. Evil or not, we are glad God made the world (or that it is here) and we want it to go on!
It will go quite unrecognised by denizens of the brave new world. It is recognisable only from within our present perspective, but it is no less real for that. Impiety then involves a dilemma. Either we fail in seeking the utopia of release from our creaturely subjection to evil and suffer a straightforwardly worldly disaster, or we succeed, in which case we suffer a different sort of disaster, a spiritual one. The aspiration for this utopia, for release from our condition as creatures, is the gist of impiety and hubris.