Heckuva Job, God

Either God is such a duffer
That He’s left us all to suffer
Through omnipotent incompetence and falsely random chance
Or He’s outsourced pain and hatin’
To His alter-ego, Satan
So He’ll dodge responsibility and let the devil dance.
Is He callous and uncaring
Or just really bad at sharing?
Either way, it seems our suffering is had at his behest
So Plantinga wants to gulp a
Bitter cup o’ Felix Culpa:
Though God punishes His children, it is all done for the best.

This morning, Jerry Coyne gets around to reacting to Dennett and Plantinga’s back-and-forth on God and evolution. Turns out, Plantinga says we are living in a “best possible world”, which of course turns out to require a great deal of suffering.

I really wish the various different arguments for God would get together and hammer out their mutual disagreements. I mean, the ontological argument starts with “if I can conceive of a great thing, it exists in my thoughts–and since an even greater thing would exist not merely in my thoughts, then this greater thing must necessarily exist in reality.” (yes, I have overly distilled it). So, Plantinga, if our world, suffering and all, is a best possible world, what does that say about being able to conceive of a world where David Attenborough would not point out that a parasitic worm can burrow into a child’s eye, eating it and blinding him.

Maybe this is the best possible world for parasitic worms.


  1. ShavenYak says

    The great thing about the ontological argument is that you can use it to make anything real. For example, Spongebob Squarepants is a being more absorbent, yellow, and porous than which nothing can be conceived. A real being must necessarily be more absorbent, yellow, and porous than one which exists solely in Nickeoldeon cartoons. Therefore, Spongebob Squarepants is real. QED.

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