1. Cape Town
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    01 Jun '14 13:17
    I often hear theists in response to the problem of evil state that all will be made right in the future. So what I want to discuss is whether or not suffering can be undone.
    1. If you experience suffering, can you be compensated at a later date such that it is as if the suffering never happened?
    2. Are there forms or quantities of suffering for which no compensation will ever balance it out?
    3. Is compensated suffering really equivalent to it never having happened. From a moral standpoint, if you cause or allow suffering then compensate for it, have you not committed a moral wrong doing?
    I actually don't know where I stand on these questions so would like to hear opinions from both sides.
  2. Standard memberRajk999
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    01 Jun '14 20:07
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    I often hear theists in response to the problem of evil state that all will be made right in the future. So what I want to discuss is whether or not suffering can be undone.
    1. If you experience suffering, can you be compensated at a later date such that it is as if the suffering never happened?
    2. Are there forms or quantities of suffering for which no ...[text shortened]... ally don't know where I stand on these questions so would like to hear opinions from both sides.
    The Bible said that in the Kingdom age the former things would not come to mind. Would that eliminate your questions?
  3. Cape Town
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    01 Jun '14 20:27
    Originally posted by Rajk999
    The Bible said that in the Kingdom age the former things would not come to mind. Would that eliminate your questions?
    No, not at all.
    If you suffer, then loose your memory of that suffering, is it as if it never happened? This is a genuine question, not a purely rhetorical one. Is that what you believe?
    If you cause someone suffering, then find a way to wipe their memory of it, are you not guilty of wrong doing?
    Suppose young child is abused by someone for 10 years, then through some accident looses all memory of that abuse. Is the abuse no longer a bad thing? Is all made right?
    What are your views on compensation? Can suffering be counteracted with money? If you suffer and are paid some monetary compensation, is there always some amount that can be said to have fully compensated for your suffering (assuming you didn't die)?
  4. Standard memberRajk999
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    01 Jun '14 22:05
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    No, not at all.
    If you suffer, then loose your memory of that suffering, is it as if it never happened? This is a genuine question, not a purely rhetorical one. Is that what you believe?
    If you cause someone suffering, then find a way to wipe their memory of it, are you not guilty of wrong doing?
    Suppose young child is abused by someone for 10 years, ...[text shortened]... amount that can be said to have fully compensated for your suffering (assuming you didn't die)?
    Yes it is as if it never happened. The saints in the Kingdom of God are transformed into different beings. For the former things to not come to mind means that it is not in your head at all, otherwise it would come to mind.

    The purpose of that, [if I could guess a good reason] is that there would be in Gods kingdom some whose former loved ones are not worthy of eternal life, husbands, wives, children. It cannot be a happy place if your loved ones are not with you. The former life is passed away and all the memories of that life are gone.
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    01 Jun '14 23:03
    Originally posted by Rajk999
    Yes it is as if it never happened. The saints in the Kingdom of God are transformed into different beings. For the former things to not come to mind means that it is not in your head at all, otherwise it would come to mind.

    The purpose of that, [if I could guess a good reason] is that there would be in Gods kingdom some whose former loved ones are not wor ...[text shortened]... nes are not with you. The former life is passed away and all the memories of that life are gone.
    Then the people in the afterlife you describe are not people who lived on this Earth.

    If you loose all memories of this world then you cease to be the same person.

    We are our memories, they make us who we are, both the good and bad ones.
    If you take those away we become someone else. You have killed the person
    who was there before and replaced them with someone or something else.
  6. Standard memberRajk999
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    01 Jun '14 23:29
    Originally posted by googlefudge
    Then the people in the afterlife you describe are not people who lived on this Earth.

    If you loose all memories of this world then you cease to be the same person.

    We are our memories, they make us who we are, both the good and bad ones.
    If you take those away we become someone else. You have killed the person
    who was there before and replaced them with someone or something else.
    Well I have wondered about that part of the Bible and as you say if the memory of the past is erased then you are in effect a different person.

    So it is either you are a new and different being or God will in the Kingdom so full the faithful with joy and peace that all unpleasant memories are buried.
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    02 Jun '14 00:51
    Originally posted by Rajk999
    Well I have wondered about that part of the Bible and as you say if the memory of the past is erased then you are in effect a different person.

    So it is either you are a new and different being or God will in the Kingdom so full the faithful with joy and peace that all unpleasant memories are buried.
    This is kind of impenetrable to me. Look at it this way. One answer is that in heaven, all the PTSD from whatever happened on earth will be instantly cured, as well as any physical disorders if there is anything like the physical body. But "disorder" is defined as debilitating impairment of normal functioning, personally and socially, meaning in part the ability to cope with normal daily life and it's problems. But what will be normal personal and social functioning, -- what will be normal daily life in heaven?. Will there even be "days?"

    The mind boggles.
  8. Standard memberRajk999
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    02 Jun '14 01:24
    Originally posted by JS357
    This is kind of impenetrable to me. Look at it this way. One answer is that in heaven, all the PTSD from whatever happened on earth will be instantly cured, as well as any physical disorders if there is anything like the physical body. But "disorder" is defined as debilitating impairment of normal functioning, personally and socially, meaning in part the abili ...[text shortened]... , -- what will be normal daily life in heaven?. Will there even be "days?"

    The mind boggles.
    Well thats interesting. First there are two parts to the Kingdom
    - the reign of Christ on earth [some say 1000 yrs] where life is good and peace exists, Many of the physical ailments of the body will be eliminated and lifespans will increase. Eventually death and sin will end. The lake of fire will destroy all evil.
    - the second part is in the New Jerusalem, mankind will no longer exist and there are only spiritual beings.

    The Bible gives lots of descriptions of the first phase but the second part is skimpy. Its hard to imagine what it will be like and the Bible says that .. ie that man cannot imagine what God has in store there for the faithful and worthy.

    Some of the writings of the early Jews give some descriptions but many dont accept it.
  9. Cape Town
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    02 Jun '14 05:42
    Originally posted by Rajk999
    Yes it is as if it never happened.
    Firstly, I would like for you to answer if possible, not just from a Biblical or afterlife perspective, but also from the perspective of such things happening here on earth during our life time. ie if you loose your memory of an instance of suffering in the past, is that suffering no longer a bad thing?

    Given your answer so far, since all people die eventually, and all those good people get to forget all suffering, and all the bad ones get tortured anyway, does this mean that there is no such thing as bad or evil when it comes to suffering? Does it not really matter if I decide to torture someone?
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    02 Jun '14 05:46
    Originally posted by Rajk999
    Well thats interesting. First there are two parts to the Kingdom
    - the reign of Christ on earth [some say 1000 yrs] where life is good and peace exists, Many of the physical ailments of the body will be eliminated and lifespans will increase. Eventually death and sin will end. The lake of fire will destroy all evil.
    - the second part is in the New Jerusale ...[text shortened]... orthy.

    Some of the writings of the early Jews give some descriptions but many dont accept it.
    I agree that it is unimaginable.
  11. Standard memberCalJust
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    02 Jun '14 11:27
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Firstly, I would like for you to answer if possible, not just from a Biblical or afterlife perspective, but also from the perspective of such things happening here on earth during our life time. ie if you loose your memory of an instance of suffering in the past, is that suffering no longer a bad thing?

    Given your answer so far, since all people die ev ...[text shortened]... ad or evil when it comes to suffering? Does it not really matter if I decide to torture someone?
    Let me try to put in my two cents worth, and please do not think that i am being frivolous or minimising the problem of suffering.

    Firstly, I don't recall anywhere in the Bible it being stated that suffering will be "undone". There is the well-known verse that "he will wipe away all tears from their eyes", and "suffering, death and dying will be no more." But, as I see it, that deals only with the elimination of FUTURE suffering. I fully agree with the statement that past suffering cannot really be "undone", since pain felt cannot be "unfelt" no matter what compensation is paid. (On an aside, I have always thought that it was rather heartless to think that Job could have felt compensated by getting new wealth and new children, after having had to bury all his previous children. Did that really wash away his pain ?)

    But Secondly, and more importantly, we must realise that suffering is not always bad. Without trivialising the issue, and with full acknowledgement that some suffering is horrendous and seemingly without purpose and merit, there are numerous cases where victims of serious calamity (whether personal, financial, spiritual) have later said that this was the "best thing that happened to them" and how it "changed their life for the better). Many sages say that suffering is the only path to spiritual growth, if you are willing to see it that way.

    Thirdly, all suffering is relative. If you live in an affluent suburb, you may think that you are "suffering" because your car is five years older than your neighbour's. If you are living in a slum, you also compare yourself with your neighbours. All that changes is the subject and the scale.

    In a way, ALL of us are suffering in one way or another, because we do not get everything in the way that we want. The key to successful living (surely you have heard this before) is not getting what we want, but wanting what we got. In other words, play the hand that you got dealt, whether it is a Downs Syndrome child or a young wife that died of cancer.

    Don't wait to be compensated for your suffering in the hereafter - life is for living now.

    In peace,

    CJ
  12. Cape Town
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    02 Jun '14 11:45
    Originally posted by CalJust
    Thirdly, all suffering is relative. If you live in an affluent suburb, you may think that you are "suffering" because your car is five years older than your neighbour's. If you are living in a slum, you also compare yourself with your neighbours. All that changes is the subject and the scale.
    Thank you for the insightful comments. I especially liked the point that suffering is often self inflicted and has to do with what we desire, or what we believe we deserve.
  13. Standard memberRajk999
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    02 Jun '14 13:54
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Firstly, I would like for you to answer if possible, not just from a Biblical or afterlife perspective, but also from the perspective of such things happening here on earth during our life time. ie if you loose your memory of an instance of suffering in the past, is that suffering no longer a bad thing?

    Given your answer so far, since all people die ev ...[text shortened]... ad or evil when it comes to suffering? Does it not really matter if I decide to torture someone?
    If you lose your memory of a bad occurrence in your life then that suffering should not affect you, in my opinionm assuming that memory stay erased.

    The second part of your concern appears to be aimed at those who cause the suffering rather than those who bear it, particularly with regard to torment. I am not a believer in eternal torment. To me that is an unbiblical doctrine. I have tried to get Christians who believe in this to quote me the references without success. Maybe you can have a try.

    Eternal torment according to the Bible is only applied to 3 beings, and not to the rank and file population that God considers evil. The latter group is simply destroyed.

    Yes I would agree that if God were to torture for all eternity a man who knows nothing of Christ and simply lived his life in ignorance of any God etc etc then that would be an act of evil on Gods part.
  14. Cape Town
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    02 Jun '14 16:42
    Originally posted by Rajk999
    If you lose your memory of a bad occurrence in your life then that suffering should not affect you, in my opinionm assuming that memory stay erased.
    I agree that it won't affect the person from then onwards. But that is not the question. The question is whether or not it undoes the suffering altogether. Is suffering forgotten no different from suffering not suffered?

    This is similar to a situation where you are wronged but do not know. Suppose your spouse cheats on you and you never find out. Is it therefore not wrong of her/him to have done it?

    The second part of your concern appears to be aimed at those who cause the suffering rather than those who bear it, particularly with regard to torment.
    Yes. Is it morally wrong to torment someone if you know that they will later forget it?

    The latter group is simply destroyed.
    So essentially all ordinary humans forget all suffering either due to memory loss or total destruction. So would you agree that if you were to suffer for the next 10 years it would not matter at all, because at some point in the future you will either loose your memory of it or be destroyed?

    Yes I would agree that if God were to torture for all eternity a man who knows nothing of Christ and simply lived his life in ignorance of any God etc etc then that would be an act of evil on Gods part.
    What if he just did it for a billion billion years, then wiped our memories. Would it then be OK?
  15. Standard memberRajk999
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    02 Jun '14 17:58
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    I agree that it won't affect the person from then onwards. But that is not the question. The question is whether or not it undoes the suffering altogether. Is suffering forgotten no different from suffering not suffered?

    This is similar to a situation where you are wronged but do not know. Suppose your spouse cheats on you and you never find out. Is it ...[text shortened]... hat if he just did it for a billion billion years, then wiped our memories. Would it then be OK?
    From a human standpoint then no the end of a period of suffering cannot undo the past. However from the point of view of the Bible, Yes God is able to wipe away the past suffering so that it is just as if it never happened. In the eg of the unfaithful spouse, only when the knowledge of the unfaithfulness manifests itself then there is suffering on the part of the wronged spouse. The guility spouse is wrong to do it whether or not anyone finds out.

    It is morally wrong to torment anyone who does not deserve it. God is a righteous judge and will only torment those who have committed such atrocious sins that they deserve to suffer. God will judge for how long they should suffer. The Bible contains no such guidelines - clearly it is not for us to know - except eternal torment is guaranteed for 3 stated individuals.
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