John Hick's Epicurus: The Existence Of God

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Epicurus questions how and why evil exists if God is omnipotent and omnibenevolent. He understands that God cannot be both all-powerful and all-loving if evil exists since s/he would then be limited in power and love. This means that God either does not have the power to stop evil or God is no so loving and will allow evil in the world. I will analyze Epicurus’ question through John Hick’s theodicy of soul making. Argument Because of imperfections in the world and humanity, evil exists. God created humanity to be imperfect; Therefore, God and evil co-exist. Hick’s theodicy states that in order for humanity to improve on their soul and growth, we need pain and suffering to aid us in this process. He suggests that evil and God can co-exist since…show more content…
According to Hick: “Since God is good and loving, the environment which he has created for human life to inhabit is naturally as pleasant and comfortable as possible. The problem is essentially similar to that of a man who builds a cage for some pet animal. Since our world, in fact, contains sources of hardship, inconvenience, and danger of innumerable kinds, the conclusion follows that this world cannot have been created by a perfectly benevolent and all-powerful deity” (Hick, 129). Hick answers Epicurus’ question by stating that the God is not all-powerful or all-loving, because of the imperfect world he created. Hick concludes that the suffering and heartache does not have a purpose of pleasure, but the purpose of growth and “soul making”. The reason that there even is pleasure is for humanity to know what pain feels like and to be able to recognize that it is because humanity is imperfect and so we must learn from it (Hick,…show more content…
An example of these evils would be the way humanity treats the environment and how the environment reacts in return. Global warming has taken place and now humanity must face the consequences and learn from their mistakes. Natural disasters such as hurricanes and floods occur constantly. These are forms of natural evils. This applies to Hick’s theodicy, because tragedies like this push humanity to work together to help one another. In today’s day and age, it has gotten to the point where there is so much controversy, that an event such as a natural disaster is one of the only things that will make humanity work together. Moral evils can be applied to Hick’s theodicy, because our words and actions help us to learn as we grow. If a crime is committed or if a person is deliberately harmed, then there are consequences that cause suffering for the one doing the hurtful actions. We learn from our mistakes and that is a part of being imperfect, proving Hick’s theodicy even more so. God created us to make mistakes so that we come to terms with what is good and right down the
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