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The Problem of Evil

            "If it turns out that there is a God, I don't think that he's evil the worst that you can say about him is that basically he's an underachiever." -Woody Allen The Problem of Evil From the viewpoint of theodicy, the problem of evil lies in its origin: Does evil come from God? In spite of God? Using theodicy to define evil is basically an attempt to affirm God's omnipotence and his/her love for humans, with the existence of evil and without contradiction. Depending on your religious background, the weight each of these options carry may vary greatly. A theologian may argue that evil is not a theoretical problem at all, as for it to be a problem, one must question Gods" power, character, and/or existence. To them, even asking the question is a sin. A theologian may also say that evil is a practical truth, as it requires from us the courage to forgive and to heal, or they might also hold the belief that to obtain moral perfection, we must face challenges and overcome them. Other appeals often made by theologians to explain evil might be: a sin is punished with suffering; having free will enables us to make choices, either for good or for evil; and finally that Satan is the cause of all evil. From the viewpoint of atheism, it is a question of the existence of God. If God is all-powerful and all-knowing, then evil must not exist apart from God. For it to do so under those criterion would be impossible. This leads one to question the true power of God, and the true good of God. If God is all good, and has the power to stop evil and does not, then God must have a slightly nasty disposition, and therefore is not all good. If God wishes to stop evil and cannot, then God is not all-powerful: he/she is limited. Evil and the Original Sin The doctrine of original sin declares that when Adam ate from the tree of knowledge, he became a moral being by knowing the difference between good and evil, and having the free will to choose between these two dichotomies.

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