Theodicy: Explanations of Evil in a Religious World

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Essay #: 052783
Total text length is 4,674 characters (approximately 3.2 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
Theodicy: Explanations of Evil in a Religious World
The term theodicy refers to the branch of religion that tries to explain the presence of unhappiness, chaos, and evil in the world around us. The term has been in use since the start of the eighteenth century, and has been extended by social scientists to refer to strategies for explaining evil on both individual and larger social levels (235). Religions, especially the three monotheistic ones that attribute most good and evil in the world to “acts of God,” have explanations of pain and evil in the world in order to make life livable. If human beings were faced with the idea that evil happened no matter what, and that there was no rhyme or reason to it, many would feel incredible despair...
The end:
.....f destruction. The doctrine of free will, however, might be seen as most useful explanation here from a monotheistic theodicy point of view, since it allows both for God’s hand in creating humans as imperfect beings and for humans’ own inability to be purely good and to always make the best, smartest, and safest decisions about how to live their lives and how they affect the lives of others. Thus, through a belief in free will we can begin to see that both God and humans are to blame, and that more to the point, sympathy and offers of help are needed more than blame in such conditions of evil. There is likely no singular reason as to the presence of extraordinary evil in this world, even though it is difficult to live with this possibility.