Voltaire On Religion

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Religion and its Fallibility under the Scrupulous Light of Rational Inquiry: the Satirical Critiques of Voltaire and George Bernard Shaw For those perplexed by the overabundance of evil in the world, religion has always provided an avenue for hope, and people throughout history have sought God for understanding, and reconciliation. If God, by definition, is omnibenevolent, omnipotent, and omniscient, how do we account for the immense suffering, evil, and injustice that exists in the world? Moreover, a world with an astronomical amount of pain and unnecessary suffering? Could such evil exist and the existence of the aforementioned God still be plausible? To address the problem of evil, philosophers and theologians have put forth theodicies,…show more content…
I will now proceed to examine how George Bernard Shaw’s the Adventures of the Black Girl in Her Search for God (1932) critiques rational inquisition into matters of religious faith. In hindsight, the sense of “cultural and racial superiority that...accompanied European colonization” was evident in the work of Christian missionaries in Africa. Rudyard Kipling, believed it was “the White Man’s Burden,” to move Africans from their backwardness, and towards civilization, through the spreading of Christianity. In Shaw’s the Adventures of the Black Girl...the white missionary responsible for converting, and as Kipling suggests, reversing the backwardness of the central character, the Black Girl, is annoyed by her constant inquiry pertaining to the ways of God, and consequently leaves her with an empty palate of unanswered questions. It is in this very first scene where Shaw is highlighting how religion, moreover Christianity, looks fallible under scrupulous light, and rational inquisition. It is such rational inquisition that leads the Black Girl and philosophers to question the nature of religion, faith, and their foundation in reason. With her questions unanswered by the white missionary, the Black Girl sets off into the forest in search of
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