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Thread: Problem of Evil in Abrahamic Faiths197 days old

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    Quote Originally Posted by Arch Hades View Post
    But anyway, I don't believe in the Abrahamic concepts of God. They make assertions regarding our physical reality that are not true. Moses splitting the red sea? That never happened. Jesus flying into the sky 3 days after death? I don't believe that happened either. I am an "Atheist" regarding these Gods.
    Personally I don't think those stories are meant to be taken literally, or at least shouldn't. I think they're implying a higher reality by metaphorically describing that which can't be translated into our physical logic. Written religions quickly become universalistic as they conflate the exoteric with the esoteric, simplifying the message for mass use.

    Only "God" in the philosophical and metaphysical monist sense makes sense to me. Perhaps in order not to derail this thread anymore I'll make a thread on the concept of God we can all partake in.
    Agree. This would require re-connecting Christianity to its Pagan influences with different interpretations of a Ur-spirit encompassing all existence. A God that is not opposed to reality, as in dualism, but united in it or patterned in paralell with it as in monism.

    The point is that there is no reason why a Christian, as such, should in the first place believe that God is omnipotent. The concept is abstract and philosohical and highly artificial and leads to eternal contradiction. I therefore see God as originating in plurality and building towards something he wants.

    Quote Originally Posted by EliasAlucard View Post
    One could argue, as you do, that our will isn't free because he designed us this way, but I have to disagree with that, because our genetics is not the same as our will; even the dumbest guy doesn't have to be evil, if he doesn't want to. And even the most intelligent guy can be both good or evil, if he chooses to be.
    Isn't iGnorance synonymous with evil, as you always say, at least on a large scale? Everyone individually can rise above themselves, but ignorance rules the world. Can the "dumbest" guy distinguish bad from good in from a wholistic sense? You could say that whatever you have the intelligence to foresee, you are responsible for, which almost makes sense except for the unintended consequences that show up all the time when we enlarge time scale to see how seemingly benevolent acts produced disaster decades later. Not wanting to be "evil" and doing "good" often results in evil. So we do not need do-gooders, we need people who become good.

    But how do you know it's logical thinking if you don't possess all the knowledge God does? Maybe it's far more logical to believe in God, if you know everything?

    Well, the sick fuck stuff is a typical human feeling of frustration, as a matter of us not knowing what's going on, and being angry at a possible god or gods, for not telling us what's what.
    One thing I think most of us can agree on is that allowing the problem of evil to lead to a rejection of God is a failure of imagination and usually caused by a desire not to believe in the first place. The evidence for a Creator, and a loving one at that, is otherwise strong and takes in many things including the beauty in the world, the love in our own hearts and much else. We must either try to work out where evil might fit into a divine scheme of things or else not worry about its existence (philosophically speaking) and just get on with eradicating it from our own hearts and minds.

    One of the major problems of modern nihilistic times is to deny that there is anything bad within our individual human hearts (and collectively as a society) that needs changing. I don't think this project can be undertaken truly without acknowledging a creator as without that life is illusion and we are spiritually centreless and without direction. So "God" in whatever way we view "him" (without infringing upon each others moral intergrity) is the light of the world to which we must all look to purify our hearts of evil; even if the side-arguments about the nature or evil or of omnipotence of deity are disagreed upon.

    Also, omniscient perfect beings would never eat the forbidden fruit, because they'd know what it would lead to (as in, mortality). They only ate the fruit because they were deceived to believe that God was hiding something from them, namely, divine knowledge.
    I think that is a good analogy for the human engineering "failure". Adam and Eve eating the forbidden fruit, Satan revolting against God's order because it doesn't flatter him, or the crucifixion of Jesus all points to the same psychology and pathology: The ego wanting to control reality.
    Last edited by Aragorn; 2017-07-16 at 02:09.
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    They are sort of baseless, but then good at keeping hold of the people who convert to them. It's a mix of promise and fear which people want.
    Last edited by voyager14; 2017-07-16 at 06:53.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Semitic Duwa View Post
    The real reason why you don't like Judaism is because your ancestors have deserted the Greek gods for a Jewish rabbi, in other words Judaism is the root cause of your identity crisis.
    This is generally the case with anti-Christian white nationalism; the animosity toward Christianity, is not a matter of how false or "fairy tale" Christianity is (in actuality of course, monotheism in general and Christianity in particular, is far more realistic than the notion that there's a god for every object and human event), but simply because Christianity displaced all pagan European religions. This is also why a lot of white nationalist / neo-Nazi types are into Hinduism and stuff like that (or at least very positive to and open-minded about Hinduism), not because they believe in Hinduism but because Hinduism is like the closest religion to the old polytheistic Indo-European religions of Europe.

    Modern exiled ex-Muslim Iranians are a similar case with their penchant for Zoroastrianism. None of them seriously believe in Ahura Mazda of course, they're just anti-Islamic (and occasionally anti-Christian like @An Shigao ) because apparently, what's wrong with Islam isn't that it's a destructive death cult with iGnorant backward followers, but because it isn't Persian

    I've bumped into a few Assyrians who are anti-Christianity too, because Christianity is a Jewish religion in its origin and not Akkadian (such Assyrians can be counted on one hand). Personally I've never taken this POV all too seriously, and I can't imagine that if God exists, he'd be real only if he came from a certain ethnic/linguistic background. That would be too tribal anyway, and while Judaism is a tribal religion and the way God is presented there is tribal, Christianity isn't a tribal/ethnic religion.
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    Quoted for truth:
    Quote Originally Posted by Alaron View Post
    Anatolian Urhemait supporters are mostly butthurt Meds.
    For the lulz:
    Quote Originally Posted by drgs View Post
    Poland is a misunderstanding. It is a country which lies on the frontier between western and slavic world, and which combines elements of both.
    In fact, they are not even the Europeans in strict sense, meaning European as in bearing the responsibility and understanding of European interests. Poland has always been an subordinate country, on one side sucking German dick, on the other side -- Russian one, some kind of "novice" europeans, who are full of inferiority complexes, hysteria and obsessity neuroses. This is also true for all Baltic countries

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    Quote Originally Posted by An Shigao View Post
    Yes, but the key difference is what is considered virtuous in Abrahamic faiths is obeying God's commands whereas disobeying is sinful. On the contrary, in Zoroastrianism there is a struggle between good and evil within the wheel of the machinery of things.

    God in the Abrahamic faiths created both what we tend to consider to be good (e.g., pleasant sensation, , dogs, blah blah) and bad (e.g., plague, famine, etc.), which makes him ultimately the causal root of what we consider to be bad***. This is called the "Problem of Evil", the fact a supposedly benevolent God could create a universe filled with suffering.

    On other hand, in Zoroastrianism, Ohrmazd and Ahriman are in conflict, for Ohrmazd was not omnipotent when Ahriman attacked, signaling the on-going fight. Point is, there is no "Problem of Evil" there because Ohrmazd did not intend for our world to be filled with suffering, and that is a consequence of Ahriman's avarice and attack.
    I think it's fair to say, that no one really thinks of famine, earthquakes and plagues, as evil today. These all have their explanations in the natural sciences. In the past it was common to argue stuff like that was the result of evil, but no one really argues that today, not even evangelical Christians (well, not most of them anyway).

    So what we're relegated to now, is that evil is simply a matter of human actions. That means the riddle of Epicurus, doesn't apply to the Christian god, at least. I mean obviously if God wanted to stop humans from committing evil acts, he could, but that wouldn't be free will.

    Also, why would anyone believe in a god (or "good spirit") who's not omnipotent? That's like one of the main points in believing in the Abrahamic God, because he's portrayed as omnipotent, and so it would be foolish to be his adversary.
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    Quoted for truth:
    Quote Originally Posted by Alaron View Post
    Anatolian Urhemait supporters are mostly butthurt Meds.
    For the lulz:
    Quote Originally Posted by drgs View Post
    Poland is a misunderstanding. It is a country which lies on the frontier between western and slavic world, and which combines elements of both.
    In fact, they are not even the Europeans in strict sense, meaning European as in bearing the responsibility and understanding of European interests. Poland has always been an subordinate country, on one side sucking German dick, on the other side -- Russian one, some kind of "novice" europeans, who are full of inferiority complexes, hysteria and obsessity neuroses. This is also true for all Baltic countries

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    Quote Originally Posted by EliasAlucard View Post
    This is generally the case with anti-Christian white nationalism; the animosity toward Christianity, is not a matter of how false or "fairy tale" Christianity is (in actuality of course, monotheism in general and Christianity in particular, is far more realistic than the notion that there's a god for every object and human event), but simply because Christianity displaced all pagan European religions. This is also why a lot of white nationalist / neo-Nazi types are into Hinduism and stuff like that (or at least very positive to and open-minded about Hinduism), not because they believe in Hinduism but because Hinduism is like the closest religion to the old polytheistic Indo-European religions of Europe.

    Modern exiled ex-Muslim Iranians are a similar case with their penchant for Zoroastrianism. None of them seriously believe in Ahura Mazda of course, they're just anti-Islamic (and occasionally anti-Christian like @An Shigao ) because apparently, what's wrong with Islam isn't that it's a destructive death cult with iGnorant backward followers, but because it isn't Persian

    I've bumped into a few Assyrians who are anti-Christianity too, because Christianity is a Jewish religion in its origin and not Akkadian (such Assyrians can be counted on one hand). Personally I've never taken this POV all too seriously, and I can't imagine that if God exists, he'd be real only if he came from a certain ethnic/linguistic background. That would be too tribal anyway, and while Judaism is a tribal religion and the way God is presented there is tribal, Christianity isn't a tribal/ethnic religion.
    I can't speak for the psychology of 'White Nationalists', only myself. I have some healthy degree of nationalism and tribalism but nothing extraordinary. I wouldnt call myself a White nationalist. Only a racialist.

    I reject Christianity first and foremost because it's stupid. The idea of the creator of the cosmos...the source of billions light years of space and billions of years of time..... making a literal reincarnate of himself into guy in Palestine 2,000 years ago to die for trivial human sins is ridiculous. That's why I reject literal interpretations of Christianity. Some have argued that this concept of Christianity is actually just the idea of Saint Paul which became so popular in the ancient world. I find this compelling. The true Jesus I believe was more a Buddha type figure. Jesus for me is still a top 5 figure in all of human history.

    Judaism is stupid because it identifies the Cosmic God with the tribal despot of the Old Testament who cares about human affairs and favors the Jews. It's bad spirituality and metaphysics. Apart from being an intelligent tribe with recent success the last few hundred years in the sciences and monetary system, Jews are not special in any cosmic grand plan.

    As for Indo-European Polytheism..yes as you pointed out it's stupid and silly as well. But at some point small branch of Indo-Europeans.....who spoke Indo-Iranian languages shed themselves of their Polytheist worldview [which the Greeks/Germanics/Celts/Romans/Hittites, etc did not] and became Monists. The Persian branch of then took this Monist principle and added heavily duelism into their worldview. Indo-European gods...like other Polytheistic gods don't really deserve the title 'God' IMO..more like Supermen or Superheros. But the Indo-Iranian branch were the first to develop a true concept of God.

    A lot of White Nationalists believe the original Vedic ARyans were White..that's why they like Hinduism, along with it's philosophical and metaphysical system. At the very least I think the Vedic Aryans were pseudo White...as European looking as modern Kalasha people. Though IMO it's likely Kalasha or other Indo-Iranian groups with high steppe admixture like Tajiks are more related to the original Vedic Aryans than any Europeans are. And I don't think the Vedic Aryans had Anatolian Farmer or Western Hunter Gatherer ancestry [the pre IE components of Europe].
    Last edited by Arch Hades; 2017-07-19 at 16:09.

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    All religions are man-made and regardless if god exists or not, it is definitely not what the religions describe.

    ~~~

    Btw Egyptians had a monotheistic religion, Atenism and Jews only copied monotheism from the Egyptians.

    "O sole god, like whom there is no other! Thou didst create the world according to thy desire, Whilst thou wert alone: All men, cattle, and wild beasts (...) The lord of all of them, wearying (himself) with them, The lord of every land, rising for them"

    "However, in the ninth year of his reign Akhenaten declared a more radical version of his new religion by declaring Aten not merely the supreme god but the only god, and Akhenaten was the son of Aten was the only intermediary between the Aten and his people." (convenient, lol)



    Plus let's not forget how in theory Moses left from Egypt and when he climbed the mountain to get the commandments, his people were already worshiping some idol... Fits nicely with Jews adopting monotheism from the Egyptians, doesn't it?
    Last edited by ageladakos; 2017-07-20 at 00:41. Reason: Typos

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    Quote Originally Posted by EliasAlucard View Post
    I think it's fair to say, that no one really thinks of famine, earthquakes and plagues, as evil today. These all have their explanations in the natural sciences. In the past it was common to argue stuff like that was the result of evil, but no one really argues that today, not even evangelical Christians (well, not most of them anyway).
    Later Sassanian Zoroastrianism largely refined itself within some intellectual strands, due to Greek philosophical influence, to argue that certain states of mind are intrinsically bad and others are intrinsically good, which Amesha Spenta represent, and there is an internal tension or conflict between the mind's tendencies towards good and bad that affects an overall eschatological judgment. Stephen E. Flowers also interprets Zoroastrianism in this way.

    Granted, I'd argue Hellenism has been the biggest influence in the history of mankind because their explicit distinctions among epistemology, metaphysics (incl. ontology), and ethics have had insane impact, I kid you not. The only figures to truly "deconstruct" this framework are Derrida and to a lesser extent early Wittgenstein and the Logical Positivists.
    Last edited by An Shigao; 2017-07-20 at 00:57.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    Isn't iGnorance synonymous with evil, as you always say, at least on a large scale?
    Regardless of scale, human iGnorance is the root cause of evil (which btw is why famines, earthquakes and plagues, cannot be evil in and of themselves, at least not earthquakes and most plagues). Evil can express itself in various ways, like weakness, destruction and so on. But it all starts with iGnorance. No iGnorance, no evil.

    That's why iPhone users are evil too by the way, because their mentality prefers a highly restricted mobile device that locks them out of features, functionality, freedom in general, source code (which is knowledge) and on top of it all, they pay more for a shittier product. Only an evil mindset prefers an expensive and restricted iPhone over a cheaper yet technically superior open source device like Android, because you can only prefer the iPhone over Android, if you're iGnorant of open source and the general superiority it brings. This is also why I often say, the products we use, reveal a lot about who we are. If you prefer pro-iGnorance products, you have the wrong mentality and you're part of the problem, not the solution.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    Everyone individually can rise above themselves, but ignorance rules the world.
    That is unfortunately the case, and iGnorance / anti-intellectuals rule the world, because mainstream thinkers have the wrong mentality. If everyone were enlightened, the iPhone literally wouldn't exist (because no enlightened person buys an iPhone) and we'd all be smoking cannabis the first thing we did when we woke up and we'd be drinking hemp milk for breakfast

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    Can the "dumbest" guy distinguish bad from good in from a wholistic sense?
    Yes, although perhaps it's somewhat less likely? But it depends on a number of factors, like upbringing and so on. If anything, it should be easier to raise stupid children into being "good" than intelligent children, because intelligent people more often have a mind of their own, whereas stupid people will do anything you tell them to do. In that sense, the capacity for good and evil should be roughly equal regardless of intelligence, I guess.

    My opinion in any case (and this is basically what we're cursed with): the leftists are intelligent and evil, and right-wingers are stupid, and they're actually the good guys. This evens it out because liberals/socialists do a lot of good as a result of their higher intelligence, whereas conservatives/libertarians fuck up a lot because they're so stupid. So there's good and evil on both sides, as opposed to one purely evil/dumb side and one pure good/intelligent side (this would be ideal). But it's important to understand the difference: intentions. Leftists pay tribute to the good stuff (like environmentalism), not because they actually believe in that stuff, but because it's a credibility point. Think about it: if your intention is pure concentrated evil and you want to kill everyone you don't like, you're not going to succeed in winning elections if you tell exactly what your agenda is (destruction, mayhem and genocide). Instead you have to sugarcoat it with stuff that sound good, like environmentalism. This is also why the Soviet dictators never talked about how they're trying to save the environment, whereas Western leftists talk about it all the time nowadays. They've figured out that they have to say the stuff people want to hear.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    You could say that whatever you have the intelligence to foresee, you are responsible for, which almost makes sense except for the unintended consequences that show up all the time when we enlarge time scale to see how seemingly benevolent acts produced disaster decades later. Not wanting to be "evil" and doing "good" often results in evil. So we do not need do-gooders, we need people who become good.
    The reason why "the road to hell is paved with good intentions" is true, is simply because mainstream thinkers are the problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    One thing I think most of us can agree on is that allowing the problem of evil to lead to a rejection of God is a failure of imagination and usually caused by a desire not to believe in the first place.
    Personally I think the Epicurean paradox is a weak argument. If anything, the existence of evil is actually one of the better arguments to God's existence (and I stress argument here, because it's not scientific evidence). Think about it: if you're God, and you're 100% pure good. And you're bored of being alone and you've decided to create some company, would you create them 100% good and omniscient so that they can only be good, or would you create them without knowledge and in a neutral "state of mind" and in an environment where both good and evil is possible, and test their character? Because only if they turn out good when there's lots of temptation and persuasive arguments to be evil, that's when they're truly good, for real.

    On that note, Islam for example, is a religion that is undoubtedly pure concentrated evil (especially in relation to Christian theology; you know, Muslims deny that Jesus was God incarnate and so on). Yet Islam is arguably one of the better arguments as to why God can possibly exist and good is possible: we have the choice between a moral religion (Christianity) and an immoral religion (Islam). Those who convert to Islam are immoral, evil and so on. And personally I don't think it's an accident of history, that Islam became as huge as it did. Generally speaking, Christians are the better part of humanity (doesn't mean every Christian is virtuous and good), and Muslims are the evil part of mankind (it also doesn't mean there are no good people who are misguided souls and nominally Muslims, but they're not real Muslims, because they're not strict, serious, hardcore Muslims).

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    The evidence for a Creator, and a loving one at that, is otherwise strong and takes in many things including the beauty in the world, the love in our own hearts and much else. We must either try to work out where evil might fit into a divine scheme of things or else not worry about its existence (philosophically speaking) and just get on with eradicating it from our own hearts and minds.
    Well, I've personally always been of the opinion, that evidence for God is beside the point, and the classical scientific argument, "evidence", doesn't apply to God, because if you're omnipotent, omniscient and most importantly, supernatural, then clearly you should be capable of not only cloaking your existence, but also hiding all evidence and traces (in this universe) that could lead us to your existence.

    So God is simply not a question for the natural sciences. This is also why agnosticism is the only scientifically rational point of view, because we really do not and cannot know if God exists or not, and both atheism and theism are a matter of pure belief/opinion. And yes, Richard Dawkins is wrong: it's definitely a case of 50/50, not 90/10 that God doesn't exist.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    One of the major problems of modern nihilistic times is to deny that there is anything bad within our individual human hearts (and collectively as a society) that needs changing.
    Yeah. This reminds me, and I have to quote once again, from one of my favorite movies:

    Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven, is that it?
    Why not? I'm here on the ground with my nose in it since the whole thing began! I've nurtured every sensation man has been inspired to have. I cared about what he wanted and I never judged him; why? Because I never rejected him, in spite of all his imperfections! I'm a fan of man!!!!!!! I'm a humanist, maybe the last humanist?
    ” ― The Devil's Advocate

    ^^ Brilliant, just brilliant stuff. Real mind-fuck of a film anyway.

    Anyway, in regards to your statement on nihilism, it can simply be argued that there's something evil about denying that we can't do anything evil. Of course people still think murder, pedophilia and so on are evil, but other than that, most other stuff that used to be considered evil in the past, have now become more or less socially acceptable. Most people (especially liberals) are okay with drugs, porn/prostitution, sex outside of marriage and so on. I'm not saying that stuff is evil btw, I don't think they are. I'm just saying, the definition of evil has been trimmed down.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    I don't think this project can be undertaken truly without acknowledging a creator as without that life is illusion and we are spiritually centreless and without direction.
    Yeah. What I find depressing about atheism is that once we die, we die and it all ends. That would be boring. I want life to continue, in a higher dimension (call it "heaven" or whatever). I don't want to cease existing. Science does have the potential to make us immortal, maybe one day we can transfer our consciousness into a computer and experience a Tron-like/Matrix-like world with awesome weapons and gravity-free martial arts or something like that, but if we're all going to do die and once we do, that's it, what a depressing thought. So in that sense, I guess the only purpose in life is reproduction, like animals, and spreading our genes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    So "God" in whatever way we view "him" (without infringing upon each others moral intergrity) is the light of the world to which we must all look to purify our hearts of evil; even if the side-arguments about the nature or evil or of omnipotence of deity are disagreed upon.
    Speaking of that, is your religious world-view, Christian or Muslim?

    Quote Originally Posted by Aragorn View Post
    I think that is a good analogy for the human engineering "failure". Adam and Eve eating the forbidden fruit, Satan revolting against God's order because it doesn't flatter him, or the crucifixion of Jesus all points to the same psychology and pathology: The ego wanting to control reality.
    Elaborate?

    My point was, "the problem of evil" isn't so much a problem as it is that we humans have the capacity for evil; we're the ones who generate evil, because a lot of humans have wicked hearts. Saying God doesn't exist because humans can be evil, is a stupid argument. How is for God to exist, required of him to prevent us from doing anything evil? The riddle of Epicurus doesn't take free will into account.

    And that's why the riddle of Epicurus is illogical. God is not required to stop evil, especially not if the existence or availability of evil, is a necessity to reveal our true nature; how can we be good -- truly good anyway -- without a test? Evil is a consequence of free will. Perhaps free will wasn't a developed philosophical concept in ancient Greece?
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    In fact, they are not even the Europeans in strict sense, meaning European as in bearing the responsibility and understanding of European interests. Poland has always been an subordinate country, on one side sucking German dick, on the other side -- Russian one, some kind of "novice" europeans, who are full of inferiority complexes, hysteria and obsessity neuroses. This is also true for all Baltic countries

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    Quote Originally Posted by EliasAlucard View Post
    Regardless of scale, human iGnorance is the root cause of evil (which btw is why famines, earthquakes and plagues, cannot be evil in and of themselves, at least not earthquakes and most plagues). Evil can express itself in various ways, like weakness, destruction and so on. But it all starts with iGnorance. No iGnorance, no evil.
    Yes, and ignorance equals herd mentality, because it disguises itself as "good" whereas in reality life contains certain traps or illusions which are invisible to our minds, and until we discover their mechanism, they will keep dooming us. I believe ignorance became the norm when society took an individualistic path, where people care more about their personal power than doing what is right in order to maintain the order of tribe, civilization, nature and the gods. But the herd will always bully anyone who acts against humanism which means that good people often appear bad at first, until they save our lives or sort out a problem. A serial killer who kills sinners is more good than your average politician or six pack Joe, but the herd would never allow such realism, since they prefer moral sabotage to keep up appearances.

    That's why iPhone users are evil too by the way, because their mentality prefers a highly restricted mobile device that locks them out of features, functionality, freedom in general, source code (which is knowledge) and on top of it all, they pay more for a shittier product. Only an evil mindset prefers an expensive and restricted iPhone over a cheaper yet technically superior open source device like Android, because you can only prefer the iPhone over Android, if you're iGnorant of open source and the general superiority it brings. This is also why I often say, the products we use, reveal a lot about who we are. If you prefer pro-iGnorance products, you have the wrong mentality and you're part of the problem, not the solution.
    I'm not a technical guy but I agree in principle. Such companies can flourish because of the difference between appearance and reality. If they’re able to present a fake appearance that appears to raise your social status, then you’ll always be waiting to upgrade to the next big thing, and shouting down others who don’t agree. And so the illusion spreads. Just like in our modern time, when we have a decentralized totalitarian state, where sacred dogmas are chanted at each other and those who disagree are seen as the modern heretics. But as I believe the Bible states, in reality the majority usually do what is wrong and only a few will do what is right.

    That is unfortunately the case, and iGnorance / anti-intellectuals rule the world, because mainstream thinkers have the wrong mentality. If everyone were enlightened, the iPhone literally wouldn't exist (because no enlightened person buys an iPhone) and we'd all be smoking cannabis the first thing we did when we woke up and we'd be drinking hemp milk for breakfast
    I guess so lol.

    Yes, although perhaps it's somewhat less likely? But it depends on a number of factors, like upbringing and so on. If anything, it should be easier to raise stupid children into being "good" than intelligent children, because intelligent people more often have a mind of their own, whereas stupid people will do anything you tell them to do. In that sense, the capacity for good and evil should be roughly equal regardless of intelligence, I guess.
    The problem as I see it is that "We The People" eventually turn against the advice of the ancients and "revolt against nature" by creating a flat hierarchy which guarantees a "me first" society through democracy which tears down leadership. The paradox of this human problem is that unlike most predators in nature, which kill off the weak and old and sick, it strikes the healthiest first like an arrogant parasite who thinks he deserves only the juiciest animal in the herd. That basically invites Satan to the table so I guess I’m very much in favor of Plato’s guardianship in that sense.

    My opinion in any case (and this is basically what we're cursed with): the leftists are intelligent and evil, and right-wingers are stupid, and they're actually the good guys. This evens it out because liberals/socialists do a lot of good as a result of their higher intelligence, whereas conservatives/libertarians fuck up a lot because they're so stupid. So there's good and evil on both sides, as opposed to one purely evil/dumb side and one pure good/intelligent side (this would be ideal). But it's important to understand the difference: intentions. Leftists pay tribute to the good stuff (like environmentalism), not because they actually believe in that stuff, but because it's a credibility point. Think about it: if your intention is pure concentrated evil and you want to kill everyone you don't like, you're not going to succeed in winning elections if you tell exactly what your agenda is (destruction, mayhem and genocide). Instead you have to sugarcoat it with stuff that sound good, like environmentalism. This is also why the Soviet dictators never talked about how they're trying to save the environment, whereas Western leftists talk about it all the time nowadays. They've figured out that they have to say the stuff people want to hear.
    Largely agree, and it’s also important to realize that the left-right division is real. Casting ones vote for one side like a role play in a binary, duopolic paradigm, one is in fact not only selling one’s soul (which is to say, serving a master who is not God), or supporting evil in order to oppose what one takes to be a greater evil; one is also in a sense propping up the other side, the side one recognizes as being the worse of the two factions.

    For in a world ruled by a duopoly, each side of the yin-yang spectrum parasitically feeds off the other for its own sustenance. When we support one side of a duality, it strengthens the other by making it necessary, since the first is based on its relationship to the other.

    This model fails when we step outside the democratic paradigm and as a result, stop treating politics like a conflict between football teams. The goal of politics is not to fight the other guy, but to assert what is the right type of society to have. This is why Leftists and Rightists are incompatible: we want entirely different types of civilizations.

    The very idea of a political spectrum fosters the illusion that if two schools of thought are both on the Right, they must be just two versions of the same thing, differing only in matters of degree. But of course Right and Left are on the same political spectrum as well, and we do not think they differ only in degree.

    So while the “official” Leftist and Rightist parties - or even a host of parties including Greens, Communitarians, and other mutations, all of which boil down to one ideological ancestor of the other - are engaged in a football game of Red Team versus Blue Team, the battle between Rightist (realism) and Leftism (individualism) is real.

    Personally I think the Epicurean paradox is a weak argument. If anything, the existence of evil is actually one of the better arguments to God's existence (and I stress argument here, because it's not scientific evidence). Think about it: if you're God, and you're 100% pure good. And you're bored of being alone and you've decided to create some company, would you create them 100% good and omniscient so that they can only be good, or would you create them without knowledge and in a neutral "state of mind" and in an environment where both good and evil is possible, and test their character? Because only if they turn out good when there's lots of temptation and persuasive arguments to be evil, that's when they're truly good, for real.
    In my view evil and good need to exist in parallell so God's creation can advance. Personally I don't see suffering as evil and I don't see God as an orchestrating personality (human projection) so the problem of evil for me is not a question of God's legitimiacy or existence but simply a human philosophical problem of a perversely projected Godhead.

    On that note, Islam for example, is a religion that is undoubtedly pure concentrated evil (especially in relation to Christian theology; you know, Muslims deny that Jesus was God incarnate and so on). Yet Islam is arguably one of the better arguments as to why God can possibly exist and good is possible: we have the choice between a moral religion (Christianity) and an immoral religion (Islam). Those who convert to Islam are immoral, evil and so on. And personally I don't think it's an accident of history, that Islam became as huge as it did. Generally speaking, Christians are the better part of humanity (doesn't mean every Christian is virtuous and good), and Muslims are the evil part of mankind (it also doesn't mean there are no good people who are misguided souls and nominally Muslims, but they're not real Muslims, because they're not strict, serious, hardcore Muslims).
    I choose to view religion as a blueprint for understanding or describing higher truth, but I don't view them as absolute forces. I am more perennial in that sense, while you seem to be more categorical. I don't think choosing Christianity before Islam shows a higher aptitute for goodness. I also don't see any evidence that Christians are the more virtuous part of humanity. But I do agree Islam in itself posits serious theological problems regarding its occasionalism (that every event is caused directly by God leaving no room for personal or moral integrity). Morality does not require God for me but it does require adaptation to reality toward God and beauty, and Islam is a very backdoor encrypted system in that sense which begs for human stagnation.

    Well, I've personally always been of the opinion, that evidence for God is beside the point, and the classical scientific argument, "evidence", doesn't apply to God, because if you're omnipotent, omniscient and most importantly, supernatural, then clearly you should be capable of not only cloaking your existence, but also hiding all evidence and traces (in this universe) that could lead us to your existence.

    So God is simply not a question for the natural sciences. This is also why agnosticism is the only scientifically rational point of view, because we really do not and cannot know if God exists or not, and both atheism and theism are a matter of pure belief/opinion. And yes, Richard Dawkins is wrong: it's definitely a case of 50/50, not 90/10 that God doesn't exist.
    Pretty much yeah, so I guess the ultimate form of humility would be entrusting oneself to God, and I understand that is a very difficult process for many, including me, but I think it's more beneficial to have a trustful relationship with God than to deny him out of personal convenience or rational OCD-type thinking. The doubts extend to doubting the doubts – such that nothing is done about them, nothing is done about trying to settle the doubts… Clearly a pathological state; yet common, mainstream.

    Yeah. This reminds me, and I have to quote once again, from one of my favorite movies:

    Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven, is that it?
    Why not? I'm here on the ground with my nose in it since the whole thing began! I've nurtured every sensation man has been inspired to have. I cared about what he wanted and I never judged him; why? Because I never rejected him, in spite of all his imperfections! I'm a fan of man!!!!!!! I'm a humanist, maybe the last humanist?
    ” ― The Devil's Advocate

    ^^ Brilliant, just brilliant stuff. Real mind-fuck of a film anyway.
    Excellent film. It really shows why evil is real and why demons exist since one can either choose personal convi
    enience and give in for the deadly sins (constituting the eternal "Human Problem") or choosing to become good.

    Anyway, in regards to your statement on nihilism, it can simply be argued that there's something evil about denying that we can't do anything evil. Of course people still think murder, pedophilia and so on are evil, but other than that, most other stuff that used to be considered evil in the past, have now become more or less socially acceptable. Most people (especially liberals) are okay with drugs, porn/prostitution, sex outside of marriage and so on. I'm not saying that stuff is evil btw, I don't think they are. I'm just saying, the definition of evil has been trimmed down.
    IMO, the definition of evil has been completely inverted. In ancient times there was a moral code with Gods, virtue and honor deciding if murder or death was right or not. Whereas today we think in e linear manner and try to sort out the "bad" beforehand through rules and think that we are advanced, but in reality are promothing decadence. Of course Christianity as norm is a hundred times better than what we have now.

    Yeah. What I find depressing about atheism is that once we die, we die and it all ends. That would be boring. I want life to continue, in a higher dimension (call it "heaven" or whatever). I don't want to cease existing. Science does have the potential to make us immortal, maybe one day we can transfer our consciousness into a computer and experience a Tron-like/Matrix-like world with awesome weapons and gravity-free martial arts or something like that, but if we're all going to do die and once we do, that's it, what a depressing thought. So in that sense, I guess the only purpose in life is reproduction, like animals, and spreading our genes.
    Yep, modern metaphysics are boring and demeans life. According to atheism everything that happens is either merely the inevitable cause of something equally meaningless that happened before; or some random and pointless event.

    I believe atheism posits the wrong question - it sees eternity from the perspective of mortality, and assumes the validity of the finite span and challenges the validity of the eternal perspective when the correct procedure is the opposite. With that said, I'm not too concerned about prolonging human life and uploading our conscioussness to computers (sounds very materialist) but I believe people should die off and make room for the next generation.

    Speaking of that, is your religious world-view, Christian or Muslim?
    It's far from Islamic, but it's not entirely Christian either. It's more perennial, esoteric and paganistic but also sympathic toward Christianity.

    Elaborate?

    My point was, "the problem of evil" isn't so much a problem as it is that we humans have the capacity for evil; we're the ones who generate evil, because a lot of humans have wicked hearts. Saying God doesn't exist because humans can be evil, is a stupid argument. How is for God to exist, required of him to prevent us from doing anything evil? The riddle of Epicurus doesn't take free will into account.

    And that's why the riddle of Epicurus is illogical. God is not required to stop evil, especially not if the existence or availability of evil, is a necessity to reveal our true nature; how can we be good - truly good anyway - without a test? Evil is a consequence of free will. Perhaps free will wasn't a developed philosophical concept in ancient Greece?
    I just think that those religious stories effectively points toward a universal human problem with origins in hubris or the desire to prioritize the desires of the individual first before the necessity of maintaining abstract or distant “invisible orders” like civilization, virtue, culture, hierarchy, divinity or natural law - which leads to hedonism and eating the "forbidden fruit" or killing Jesus. As you say, humans have the capacity for evil and can destroy themselves, but it doesn't mean God or the universe gives a shit as life goes on and something better comes along. For me humans are not God's end goal, but one of his means. This world is real and logically optimal, so logically another "perfect world" of God must be human projection.
    Last edited by Aragorn; 2017-07-26 at 19:22.
    The United States symbolises the worst ideologies in the world: growth and freedom ― Pentti Linkola

    The ability to observe without evaluating is the highest form of intelligence ― J. Krishnamurti

    Excessive thinking creates gaps in reality ― Alan Watts

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