Just came back from the church. Pastor Randy continued his series on “spiritual forces”. Today he was talking about angels. Quite a weird topic. Most of what people say about this is made up. I admit that there can be “spiritual experiences” when people see those angels. But one can talk about it in terms of individual experiences and not as of objective reality. I disagree with a view presenting the world as a fight between “good” and “evil”. First of all, these categories do not exist beyond human society which is limited to our tiny planet and not even the whole planet. The vast universe is completely oblivious to such things. So, thinking that the whole purpose of creating the universe is to set up this fight of “good” against “evil” is strange because this fight goes on, primarily, in people’s heads.
I was listening to Allan Watts speeches in the car recently. I completely agree with his views on religion and philosophy of relationship between the individual and the “universe”. Watts says that the individual and the environment are one and the same. One cannot exist without the other and one creates the other. So, it’s incorrect to think of them as separate entities. In the same way, “good” and “evil” are two sides of the same coin. Good cannot exist without evil just like mountains cannot exist without valleys. If you create mountains, you create valleys as well. There is no way around.
Now, theologians say that Satan is one of the angels created by God who rebelled against God and became evil. It sounds like we have to blame Satan for the disobedience and the existence of evil. But let’s think about it. God can’t say what’s good without also saying what’s not good. One can’t define “good” without defining “evil”. Meaning is exclusion. If God sets a law that he wants his creatures to obey, that very act presumes that disobedience is possible. Would disobedience to God’s law be impossible, there would be no law. So, the existence of the law presumes disobedience. That’s the way things are.
For me, this answers The Problem of Evil or “how the benevolent, omnipotent, and omniscient God could create evil”. As I think of it, how could he not? The paradox exists only if we separate one from the other. But it’s impossible to separate good from evil, just as it’s impossible to separate mountains from the valleys. So, we must think of them as we think of two sides of the same wheel. One side goes up, the other side goes down.