1. Hmmm . . .
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    11 Apr '08 05:151 edit
    (1) An omniscient god would know what is the best of all possible worlds.

    (2) An omnipotent God can create the best of all possible worlds.

    (3) An omni-good God will create the best of all possible worlds.

    (4) God is O-O-O.

    (5) God is the creator of the world.

    (6) Therefore, this is the best of all possible worlds.

    __________________________________________

    Notes:


    —The “best of all possible worlds” means that any deviation from any event that has happened or will happen in that world would make it somehow less good. That is, one less holocaust victim would have resulted in a worse world; if Adam and Eve had not sinned, that would result in a worse world; if no one were condemned to eternal hell, that would be a worse world; etc., etc.

    —If God is omniscient, that also refutes any argument along the lines of, “Well, God created the best world, but humanity screwed it up”—since an omniscient God knew exactly what humanity would do in any world.

    —I am making no assumptions about what is “good” per se. Notice that I replaced the usual “omnibenevolent” with the broader “omni-good”. If somebody wants to argue that God’s omni-goodness entails malevolence, fine.
  2. Standard memberBosse de Nage
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    11 Apr '08 06:38
    Originally posted by vistesd
    (1) An omniscient god would know what is the best of all possible worlds.

    (2) An omnipotent God can create the best of all possible worlds.

    (3) An omni-good God will create the best of all possible worlds.

    (4) God is O-O-O.

    (5) God is the creator of the world.

    (6) Therefore, this is the best of all possible worlds.
    Absolutely, Dr Pangloss!

    Sincerely
    Candide
  3. Hmmm . . .
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    11 Apr '08 06:442 edits
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    Absolutely, Dr Pangloss!

    Sincerely
    Candide
    Dear Candy,

    Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    Dr. Goodgloss
  4. Cape Town
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    11 Apr '08 06:481 edit
    Originally posted by vistesd
    (1) An omniscient god would know what is the best of all possible worlds.

    (2) An omnipotent God can create the best of all possible worlds.

    (3) An omni-good God will create the best of all possible worlds.

    (4) God is O-O-O.

    (5) God is the creator of the world.

    (6) Therefore, this is the best of all possible worlds.

    ____________________ ...[text shortened]... ader “omni-good”. If somebody wants to argue that God’s omni-goodness entails malevolence, fine.
    Many people would argue that freedom is better than slavery even if the actual living conditions are significantly worse when free, or life is considerably shorter.
    Some people use a similar argument to claim that free will with the attendant likelihood of bad choices is better than forced good choices.
    In other words some bad decisions are a necessary requirement.

    I don't know that I agree with either argument.

    However it doesn't really refute your argument though I am sure that some will claim that it does.

    Related to your argument is the following:
    An omni-good God would not allow anyone to go to hell. People refute that by claiming that we choose to go to hell by our free will and that God would violate our free will if he stopped us. However, I am yet to hear anyone give a good reason why anyone would, with full knowledge of the consequences actually choose to go to hell. Makes one wonder if free will is also about ignorance of choice. Who would ever make the wrong choice if they knew which choice was best? So God must keep us ignorant to preserve our free will.
  5. Standard memberSwissGambit
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    11 Apr '08 06:481 edit
    Originally posted by vistesd
    (4) God is O-O-O.
    God likes castling Queenside? I knew it. 😞 If he is so all-knowing and all-powerful, then why did he create a chessboard where so many innocent little pawns have to die? :'(
  6. Hmmm . . .
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    11 Apr '08 07:081 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Many people would argue that freedom is better than slavery even if the actual living conditions are significantly worse when free, or life is considerably shorter.
    Some people use a similar argument to claim that free will with the attendant likelihood of bad choices is better than forced good choices.
    In other words some bad decisions are a necessary e if they knew which choice was best? So God must keep us ignorant to preserve our free will.
    However it doesn't really refute your argument though I am sure that some will claim that it does.

    I agree; I don’t think it does.

    People refute that by claiming that we choose to go to hell by our free will and that God would violate our free will if he stopped us.

    Actually, I don’t think free-will has anything to do with my argument at all (though I think you are correct that it will likely be raised). My choice-set in this world is constrained by the law of gravity; that is either a constraint on my free will or not. If it is, then my free-will is already constrained—by that and other existential factors of God's creation. If not, then a choice-set in which nobody would ever even think to commit, say, child-rape, is no more a constraint on free-will than is gravity.*

    However, if one wants to use free-will to argue that this is, in fact, the best of all possible worlds—and that, for example, it would be a worse world if Adam and Eve had not introduced “original sin”—then fine.

    * I owe this line of thought to telerion.
  7. Standard memberBosse de Nage
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    11 Apr '08 07:08
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Dear Candy,

    Thank you.

    Sincerely,

    Dr. Goodgloss
    From a pragmatic as opposed to a theoretical perspective, Doctor, it seems that the harm wrought by well-meaning altruistic interventions such as missionary activity does bear out your thesis. I recently read a wonderful book, Shantaram, in which the horrified protagonist is shown that even such patent evils as child slavery on the Indian sub-continent offer a choice between life and death that would otherwise not exist. Abolishing them at a stroke would cause more suffering not less. These harsh facts stick in the craw, but with your help I may be able to countenance them with greater equanimity.

    Candide
  8. Hmmm . . .
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    11 Apr '08 07:122 edits
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    From a pragmatic as opposed to a theoretical perspective, Doctor, it seems that the harm wrought by well-meaning altruistic interventions such as missionary activity does bear out your thesis. I recently read a wonderful book, Shantaram, in which the horrified protagonist is shown that even such patent evils as child slavery on the Indian sub-continent ...[text shortened]... e craw, but with your help I may be able to countenance them with greater equanimity.

    Candide
    Not with my help, Candi!

    But I’ll look up that book (is the book's thesis intended to be serious, or ironic along the lines of Candide?).

    EDIT: BTW, does that mean that we should not attempt to eliminate (or even ameliorate) human suffering, under any circumstances?
  9. Standard memberBosse de Nage
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    11 Apr '08 07:152 edits
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Not with my help, Candi!

    But I’ll look up that book (is that thesis serious, or ironic along the lines of Candide?).
    The book doesn't really contain a thesis as such. It's a sustained quest for love against a backdrop of war and horror. A novel with a great big heart. A refreshing change from the stuff I usually read. Author's Gregory David Roberts. He has a page on the Web somewhere with a robust homespun philosophy section that might interest you.

    (Incidentally, it's funny that you should bring up gravity. It's been weighing on my mind lately. To what extent does it determine consciousness? If time and space are a priori filters (or whatever exactly Kant called them), how does gravity fit in?)

    COUNTER EDIT: Not necessarily, but suffering needs to be redressed where it starts. Child slavery is symptomatic of a more deep-rooted malaise. A surgical intervention is unlikely to cure it.
  10. Hmmm . . .
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    11 Apr '08 07:181 edit
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    The book doesn't really contain a thesis as such. It's a sustained quest for love against a backdrop of war and horror. A novel with a great big heart. A refreshing change from the stuff I usually read. Author's Gregory David Roberts. He has a page on the Web somewhere with a robust homespun philosophy section that might interest you.

    (Incidentally, pace are a priori filters (or whatever exactly Kant called them), how does gravity fit in?)
    A sustained quest for love—that’s me all over!

    Note my edit before your reply...

    EDIT: I think Kant included time/space as synthetic a prioris. I don’t pretend to understand Kant well. I do talk in terms of the grammar of our consciousness as the only means by which we can attempt to decipher the syntax of the cosmos (which, of course, includes us and our grammar). I think that might be close to what Kant was getting at with his synthetic a priori... But I don’t attempt to specify what are aspects of that grammar as opposed to features of the cosmos.
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    11 Apr '08 07:20
    Originally posted by vistesd
    (1) An omniscient god would know what is the best of all possible worlds.

    (2) An omnipotent God can create the best of all possible worlds.

    (3) An omni-good God will create the best of all possible worlds.

    (4) God is O-O-O.

    (5) God is the creator of the world.

    (6) Therefore, this is the best of all possible worlds.

    ____________________ ...[text shortened]... ader “omni-good”. If somebody wants to argue that God’s omni-goodness entails malevolence, fine.
    i don't get it. or better said i understand you picture this world as being the best possible world since you state that any deviation from the current history would make it less good.

    how can an omniscient god exist and hoomans still have free will?

    the notes only work if you hold the 1-5 to be absolutely true. so i must ask: isn't it depressing to picture this hell hole we call earth to be the best possible earth? that whatever crimes humanity has committed against the planet and itself were justified because it was god's will and we were building a better future for ourselves? that slavery and WWII did not happen because some hoomans are jerks but because it was god's will?

    i hope you are joking else this thread is similar to what the americans said to justify slavery. or what torquemada said to justify his sadist nature
  12. Joined
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    11 Apr '08 07:24
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Many people would argue that freedom is better than slavery even if the actual living conditions are significantly worse when free, or life is considerably shorter.
    Some people use a similar argument to claim that free will with the attendant likelihood of bad choices is better than forced good choices.
    In other words some bad decisions are a necessary ...[text shortened]... e if they knew which choice was best? So God must keep us ignorant to preserve our free will.
    hoomans tend to do what is best in the short run but disastrous in the long run. people smoke, they party all night, they eat mcdonald crap, etc.

    why? because it feels good and they think they can make up for it later. like buying on credit. or they are plain stupid. so yes, people might not choose to go to hell but hell is the bill that comes after a lot of shopping on credit
  13. Joined
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    11 Apr '08 07:30
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    From a pragmatic as opposed to a theoretical perspective, Doctor, it seems that the harm wrought by well-meaning altruistic interventions such as missionary activity does bear out your thesis. I recently read a wonderful book, Shantaram, in which the horrified protagonist is shown that even such patent evils as child slavery on the Indian sub-continent ...[text shortened]... e craw, but with your help I may be able to countenance them with greater equanimity.

    Candide
    yes, but in the long run, it might be best if we free them. otherwise you leave them in a state of slavery without the hope of improvement. one does not let a bad tooth inside because of fear of the pain(well some do but eventually the tooth has to come out). so you endure the pain and know that after the pain passes you would be better off
  14. Hmmm . . .
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    11 Apr '08 07:321 edit
    Originally posted by Zahlanzi
    i don't get it. or better said i understand you picture this world as being the best possible world since you state that any deviation from the current history would make it less good.

    how can an omniscient god exist and hoomans still have free will?

    the notes only work if you hold the 1-5 to be absolutely true. so i must ask: isn't it depressing to p the americans said to justify slavery. or what torquemada said to justify his sadist nature
    I am not joking, but I offer the inference as a challenge to theists who assert that God is an omnipotent, omniscient and omni-good being who created the world. I am not such a theist. If you are (and I don’t know if you are), then which premise, of 1-5, do you dispute and why?

    I agree that this inference could be used to justify slavery or the Inquisition or any number of abhorrent things. I do not see how any theist who insists on the O-O-O God can get out of that. Again, I am not such a theist.
  15. Cape Town
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    11 Apr '08 08:20
    Originally posted by Zahlanzi
    hoomans tend to do what is best in the short run but disastrous in the long run. people smoke, they party all night, they eat mcdonald crap, etc.

    why? because it feels good and they think they can make up for it later. like buying on credit. or they are plain stupid. so yes, people might not choose to go to hell but hell is the bill that comes after a lot of shopping on credit
    So do you agree with me that we would only choose to go to hell if either:
    1. We are stupid.
    2. We are ignorant of the consequences.
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