Challenging All Theodists

"The way in which this loving God would create is not so much by causality,
which is the way science talks about creativity. So we are not talking about
God as a cause, but as a letting be. "

                                           - John Haught appearing on Curiosity

While the Philosophy and Theology paper details the shocking failure of
theologians to address the planetary war on the children square and fair up
until that time, this is a quick catch up on the two years since. I sent a copy
of the P&T paper to every major theodist I could dig up. The response
privately and publicly to date has been – zilch. Not that I’m surprised; how can
a supernaturalist come up with an explanation for the wastage of so many
children that makes any sense? So the response has been to tacitly pretend
that the Holocaust of the Children does not exist. As per Catholic theologian
John Haught who knows about the P&T paper. The cable documentary series
Curiosity began with an excellent episode on how Stephen Hawking argues that the
laws of physics preclude the existence of any gods. A follow up panel
discussion included Haught. He never breathed a word about the tens of billions
of dead kids. For that matter neither did Hawking or the atheist panelist.
That is not right. The greatest of tragedies event should be the focus of
discussions on the morality of the alleged creator. Theologians, we await and
demand your response.

And not with empty platitudes about the love of god. Nor does talk about a
god letting things “be” cut it – such a deity is irresponsible to the
highest degree, and a hands off policy hardly justifies so much death. What is
required is a tight argument that for the first time makes logical moral sense
(see footnote). Arguments that fully explain why it is beyond the pale to
contend that those humans like Hitler and Mao who have killed millions of
children to have been moral, while we can or must worship and adore a
supernatural being who allowed to come into being a globe so deadly that billions and
billions of youngsters have died. Because that is not possible I am not
holding my breath. On the Colbert Report Father Jim Martin repeated the
Catholic fall back position that God cannot be morally judged no matter how badly
he runs the planetary show because we humans are not qualified to do so (not
that Christodoctrine is stopping folks from doing so, the cleric’s
appearance was in response to Public Policy Poll finds that a bare majority of
Americans approve of the Lord Creator’s job performance;

Now that’s downright pathetic, even leading theodists don’t buy that
blatant ethical evasion because it risks accommodation of the highest
immorality. Sometimes things are just plain wrong, so much so that even humans can
figure it out, and if killing off the kids does not qualify then what does?
And spare us the evasion that these issues are complicated and can only be
answered by wise and learned theologians able to discern dimly the intricate
mind of God. Any mentally healthy person can understand that there is no
excuse for the disaster of the young. Of course theists could go ahead and
acknowledge they are wrong. Not holding my breath on that one either.

Footnote: An example of a theodistic argument that fails so badly that it
actually increases the skepticism of antisupernaturalists like myself has
been offered by Anglican physicist and theologian John Polkinghorn
He correctly explains that plate tectonics are a good thing in that
their movement is what has created the continents we humans dwell
upon – otherwise we would live on an ocean planet.

That’s the nifty part. The dark side is that the plates lock up at their
edges, eventually slip many meters suddenly, and create earthquakes and
tsunamis that kill off lots of folks including children.

That argument is so painfully incorrect and correspondingly obtuse that it
constitutes yet another reason to not believe in the gods. Do you see the
defect? If not here it is. According to Christian doctrine God is perfect in
His intelligence and unlimited power. So he could and should have carefully
crafted the planet so that the plates constantly slide smoothly past one
another, centimeters each year, eliminating all the earthquakes and tsunamis.

So why did He not do so? And before resorting to the routine God wants us to
have free will argument remember that its not being involved in earthly
affairs enough to get it right aborts the free will of the children that are the
age cohort most readily killed by plate tectonics. The Polkinghorn Tectonics
Theodicy Theory is something one expects to come out of a college bull
session, not from a leading theologian who is supposed to have real answers. You
theists have to come up with something a whole lot better if you are going
to convince nonsupernaturalists to come over to your ideological cult. 

CONTACT Gregory S. Paul