DEBATE: IS GOD EVIL? Literary & Historical Society, University College Dublin

you you everyone and welcome to the sixth ordinary meeting of 160 third session of the lettering Historical Society and we're delighted to welcome you all here to the chambers he moved to debate the motion this house believes God is evil I'm gonna start by introducing all the speakers that will be speaking to you tonight so to start with the proposition we first have Eric a special from the atheists and secular society Corki Kim who's in Aquarius John Humble from atheist giant and Kevin heavey whose birthday it was yesterday speaking on the opposition first we have Jason Conroy from UCD's Newman society – a B C's the UCD checking Kevin Brennan and Abdullah Alonso Lucy who's the co-founder of the Muslim debate initiatives [Applause] now let's call on change ring this week's record I told my brother that I was doing a I'd need jokes about religion and he responded that religion was a joke so that's where we're at with this speech so religion it's kind of like Richard spinners I'm kind of over it like don't get me wrong religion used to be fun you could type you just sacrifice a few goats or bulls or children or whatever and you get to have food back in ancient Greece the gods were a bunch of loveable rogues always getting up to hijinks and misadventures that only some of the time resulted in dozens of people dying even during the Middle Ages it was a bit of a it was a bit of crack since he was just using it as an excuse for Westerners to invade the Middle East to brakes and steal a bunch of shit which definitely doesn't happen now religion is not like this anymore though nowadays if I tried to sacrifice my mate Chris to the Sun in exchange for a favorable harvest its attempted murder and I'm ruining Christmas people need to start taking religious religion so seriously because God knows most of us don't most of us have a daily interaction with religion that consists of getting annoyed at Islamophobes on Twitter hearing the Angelus at 6:00 to let you know that reeling in the years might be starting in half an hour and taking a BuzzFeed quiz to find out which biblical prophet you are based on your favorite Disney movie but some people are very adamant they can be very adamant about their beliefs which is definitely it's not necessarily a bad thing an issue arises though when you don't allow dissenting views like the Catholic Church for example it used to like censor books they didn't like like can you actually imagine that can you imagine someone taking information out of a book to enforce their religious beliefs on anyone else they can you imagine if that happened today [Applause] but no no look look the church is it's the church is a lot nicer today like the Pope Pope Francis in Pope Francis is quite nice and did you know Pope Francis before he came became a priest he was a chemical engineer and he was a nightclub and he had all these jobs like he was he was a jack of all trades and a master of nuns I made a lot of the Catholic Church today now it's time to move on to Muslims okay sorry apparently we're not allowed we have to get rid of that section for legal reasons in that case the Jews no okay sorry of course this debate isn't just about what religions I can get away with offending it's about whether or not God is evil and like I just don't see how you could think that like he was really good in the Shawshank Redemption he's really go to the dark night I guess you sort of a dick and now you see me but like I mean okay now start for some audience participation you there what's your name yeah you Liam and what do you study Liam and Liam what's your least favorite religion [Applause] don't answer that fiancee okay look I've poked a lot of fun at religion here today but I'd like to conclude with one of my favorite verses from the Bible because I actually do have one you can rock this off it is actually in the Bible it's second Kings two verses 23 to 25 from there Alicia went up to Bethel as he's walking along the road some boys came out of the town and jeered at him get out of here Baldy they said get out of here Baldy he turned around looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the Lord then two bears came out of the woods and mauled 42 of the boys and he went on to Mount Carmel and from there he returned to Samaria now you might be wondering if that story has some deeper meaning thank you Thank You Shane an Tillich so just to familiarize yourself and for those you haven't been to a hex to vote yet before matters debate the debate goes that across persons be clearly followed by an oxygen speaker and so on till I get to the end then we'll open the floor for audience and questions at the end of the debate and speeches are seven minutes in length so after the first minute you'll hear I'll clap at which point anybody in the floor is allowed to offer questions and those speakers are allowed to accept your eject those questions please respect the speaker's wishes for peace also get involved and feel free to ask questions feel free to are involved in the debate that's absolutely fine and we'd encourage you to do that and when the speech rate reaches six minutes so here another class at which point you can no longer ask the questions and the speakers have a minute that we're after at seven minutes they'll hear a double clap at which point they should wrap up their speeches it doesn't mean they have to speak for seven minutes that's just the structure of the debate and that's just so none of you are confused and during the process so without further ado I'd like to call on Eric espero to open faced with a position here all right I know what everyone's thinking already can't believe Jesus an atheist regardless as an atheist this motion is a bit tricky to discuss you know first thing I thought was how can I argue God is evil if I don't even believe that God that any God exists for that matter I thought to myself how am I gonna tiptoe my way around this debate maybe I could work it as the God presented in the Bible the Koran the Torah is an evil pernicious malevolent character well that was a bit too easy to do so instead what I'm gonna try to do is avoid the prevalent the all too prevalent argumentum ad passione sword appeal to emotions as much as I possibly can in this I'm going to be avoiding the God of classical monotheism so the Bible the Koran datura they're not gonna be referenced at all instead I'm gonna start by posing this question what does it mean to be good or to be evil is evil merely the athletes of good as dark as the athletes of light or cold is the absence of heat my definition of goodness goes as follows and I'll stick to this definition throughout my definition is good is to is to maximize well-being and to minimize suffering now I'll ask another question what reason do we have to think that if a God exists that this entity is significantly more inclined to goodness rather than evil neither the teleological or the argument from design nor the cosmological argument are the argument from universal causation that the universe has the beginning and that the cause of it must be a God can relate any sort of moral make up of a divine creator I must warn that this will not be an attempt to prove that God is evil or that there exists any evil deity for that matter for as I said I don't believe that a God exists however this will be an attempt to show that within the frameworks of the arguments made for a god both propositions are of equal Worth and wait I'm gonna pose my main point right now if the problem of evil does not dismiss the notion of an amoeba leveling omni-benevolent god then why should the problem of good dismiss the notion of an omni malevolent god both are equally compatible with in the current justifications of a divine entity so let me explain the logical formula for the problem of evil goes as follows point 1 there exists an all-powerful omniscient omnipotent all good God point to evil and suffering exists point to is true therefore point one must be false on the other hand the problem of good would state point one there exists an all-powerful omniscient omnipotent all evil God point two good exists point two is true therefore point one must be false keep these ideas in mind the explanation is the problem of evil known as theodicies if freewill would be an example of a theodicy does indeed give viable and reasonable explanations for the existence of suffering pain evil death etc however most of these can only take into consideration human cause evils and not what we would call a natural evil like a baby deer getting trapped in a forest fire and ultimately suffering until it dies if God is all loving and all-powerful why would he allow or inflict so much wanton destruction and suffering onto his creation often this problem is answered with God works in mysterious ways this assertion is fallacious at best non ckio ergo damn I don't know therefore God I ask you to keep in mind my two main points the problem of evil and the problem of good so I hope that you did just as these theodicies give explanations refuting the problem of evil the same thing can be done in a mirrored fashion against the evidentiary problem of good which can be called reverse the ICC's take this for example an all evil creator gave those he created the free will to do good unto others even though that goes against his divine evil plan and all evil God could have created human beings with the proverbial strings attached as if we were puppets adherence to his every despicable command however to maximize moral depravity and evil the creator would rather have us perform these atrocities on our own accord just hasn't all good on all good God would rather has performed good deeds on our own accord for you cannot have one form without the other just as you need evil to have good and good to have evil this theodicy known as the contrast theodicy works equally well for both scenarios another theodicy which can be called the character-building solution could just as easily be paired with a mirrored character destroying solution so often you hear theists say God never gives you what you can't bear that's the erroneous people died from what they can't handle all the time the idea follows that people through their suffering and plight may come out stronger than they had before they started equally an evil God may give his perfect health beauty a beautiful skin clever mind only for it to be stripped of us as the years go on causing a far higher degree of nostalgic suffering if you will a yearning for the past an evil God gives us loving and caring parents only for the children to have to watch those parents grow old and to eventually die outside of their own control to have had such a beautiful thing in the beginning only for it to be taken away can be argued as more evil than to have never had in the first place for these reasons it can be determined that both ideas presented within the arguments for the existence of a creator are both equally compatible if these reverse theodicies are not enough on their own to convince than the fallacious God did argument would certainly work in reverse manner as well simply we cannot explain all the good in the world or why such an evil God would allow us so much happiness and good to exist however God does work in mysterious ways to consolidate my main point any evidence used in refuting the problem of evil and if an all good God can in return be reversed and used symmetrically and refuting the problem of good and an all evil God therefore it must be determined that an omni benevolent and an Omni malevolent God are two equally substantiated claims in the arguments for the existence of a God thank you [Applause] thank you for his comments and call on the opening figures from the opposition Jason Calgary I've got some good news for all of you God isn't actually evil I'm sure you're probably a bit worried for a second there not a good thing to wake up to in the morning but no but this is kind of a serious subject as well let me tell you a quick story there was a girl who's in Ireland for a while during last year I knew her she was Frank French and basically we got talking about religion what she said oh I wish I had your face but I can't and you know I said no well why not and we got talking and basically she said she told me the story of someone that she knew very very well and this woman she was a mother of three children her husband committed suicide and she was diagnosed with cancer and she had I think if I recall correctly she'd show got a long time with that and she tried to subscribe get together as much money as she could to try and pay for the treatment but after after the treatment so cancer was still there and every morons this girl told me how every morning this mother gets up and with a smile on her face despite all of her suffering so that she can you know get her three children ready for school and still try to be a good mother for them so this is something that affects us all very really deeply and really closely because we all have you ever suffered ourselves and or we know someone we love dearly who has suffered as well and we ask you why they don't deserve – why how can a good God allow this so we're talking based about the problem of evil and I'm gonna just quickly reformulate boss Eric said in his in his speech the bubble of evil is basically that if there is if there is evil then they're kind of being all good God because in all good God will prevent all evil that's essentially what it is well what's my arguments I'm hoping to turn that on its head he's by saying I am by starting so the arocs Eric's assumption that argument is up there can't be any explanation for evil that's kind of when I hidden assumption and half of the whole thing I'm gonna kind of turn out on his head and start we're trying to establish there is a good God and from that follows to conclude the inevitable conclusion that there must be an explanation for evil I'm gonna try and give some some examples what that explanation might be some arguments going to be try and show you that there is a God try and show you that he is good then trying to offer some examples of what that explanation of evil and suffering might be in the world so first of all I'm going to find this as quickly as possible that there is a God so believe it or not science actually points the existence of a God but that's an audacious claim but it's true so I'm gonna just quickly formulate the cosmological arguments here which is which goes something like this premise one everything that begins to exist has a cause premise to the universe began to exist therefore the universe has a cause and I'm gonna just quickly explain why that cause must necessarily be God first of all everything that begins to exist has a cause well nothing can just come out of nothing that's impossible no thank you and nothing can life so something that doesn't exist can't just bring itself into existence because it's nothingness you know it doesn't have any potential that you do that nothing to bring itself out of his distance or so he began to exist it must have had a cause the universe began to exist that's this is what science points us towards you got the Big Bang Theory some people would say that the universe has existed and eternal is eternally hold and but that's been refuted by modern physics in a paper for example the board goose if the Lankan paper literally says that there's no escape from the fact of a cosmological big novel cosmological beginning at the universe did in fact begin at some point so why is this God well what universe I mean all of space and time and matter the creator of all of space and time and matter most necessary not be contained within the category of time it must not be contained in space and he couldn't be contained within the category of matter being the one who creates all of these things I know this is a very brief way of explaining this so you know it's I won't not gonna spend any longer in there because of it might be all day doing it there's also a series of coincidences I supposed to call and transyl anthropic coincidences that make life possible in the universe without which life would not be possible in the universe for example protons and neutrons and you trying to slightly heavier than a proton if that was any different if protons were slightly heavier their neutrons there would be only hydrogen in the entire universe and that would make me there's no possibility for life if neutrons were slightly heavier than protons are slightly more heavy than they already are there will be no hydrogen in the universe so even looking put hydrogen or no hydrogen the universe on both of those things would make life very impossible there's other examples of that but I'm running out of time so let me move on hopefully I've made a good case no thank you hopefully I've made a somewhat good case for sure for saying why God does exist because you know all of these coincidences these aspects of physics I don't have to be that make life possible they all are they all know they don't have to align with each other to make life possible even one of them was was was different you know like every hospital all in the universe this seems to naturally lend itself to a religious interpretation so seconds my second thing I want to establish is God is good now I'm gonna have to deviate from my vigil our original arguing just a little bit to deal with some of our exploits well my first point it would be say well look around you there's a lot of good that is in the world there's music there's beauty there's other people this friendship there is enjoyment there's a lot of good things in life that were able to enjoy and I'd also say look at some of the good people in the past as well especially people who have claimed to be closest to God I've done some great things in the past I want to just well to wrap others too many times accounts and I'm sure there's lots of them whose stories aren't known but one example would be the story of Maximilian Kolbe who in Auschwitz when when I am when I father of my family was going to be put into a pitch and starved to death Maximilian Kolbe a step forward and said I'm a Catholic priest let me take his place that was an act of pure self giving of pure self sacrifice for someone he didn't know at all so and he starved to death she was with ten other people in that pitch and he helped comfort each one of them until they died and he was the last one desire himself then so there's a lot of good in the world and since goodness since I've made the re the case already that if God did create all the world if there is goodness in the world and I've goodness they've come from him now I'm gonna have to get to get a little more philosophical as well because I'm because you see what her expose a kind of touching that point if God was evil well putting things be a whole lot worse than they are at the moment I mean couldn't we live in some kind of like torture world of like endless suffering and pain like comparison faced with that prospect of evil God your life is actually good in comparison what the possibilities are and there's a lot of things there's other things to live for so hopefully I've kind of somewhat established I was there's a philosophical point of what what is goodness a goodness is an objective thing and there and evil is just a lack of goodness and that therefore goodness was come from God therefore God is good but I can't really get into that very much the moment because I'm running out of time as you can see so I'll try again on my very last points well so if we could establish the existence of a good god then it must follow is that there must be some kind of explanation for suffering and I'm gonna try and suggest what that might be because it's not such a far-fetched thing I'm gonna try and dismantle the assumption on the proposition side that there is there can be no explanation for suffering that suffering can never end up being a great resulting in a greater good than things were beforehand my aunt was diagnosed with cancer about two years ago that's not fun she had to get together treated with her chemotherapy that's not very fun either all her hair fell out she felt sick basically all the time it's basic it's pretty agonizing and excruciating but she stuck through it and because of the chemotherapy she she went into remission her cancer went into remission and now she's she's complete she's like a new person almost she's completely into like exercising she's also got the whole family started go going to gym all of her sisters in her 50s they're all going to the gym they're all concerned about their health now she's got a new lease on life he's almost appreciates life even more now because of how close she came to losing it this is something that's being recognized as being empirically recorded by cycloid by psychologists that's called adversarial growth it's when there's a turning point in someone's character which is caused by by adversity which is caused by by suffering and they people are like a whole new person afterwards their lives improve exponentially because of that suffering and look at your own lives you can see that this is true as well is there anything really good and worthwhile there and if you have in your own lives that you do not get by having some kind of struggle or suffering for us alexander's know as they say no pain no gain but you know what about what about their like the cases we can't see it any less this doesn't seem to be any any explanation at all so in situations like like what Stephen Fry said you know if I'm if I ever meet god I'd say how dare you what about three-year-old children of bone cancer how can you justify that that's a good question I'd ask I'd say mm look at it like this we assumed that we would know how an infinitely good God would act so we would like so think of it this way if a child was being bought for a vaccination by their parents from the child's point if you like you know why my parents doing this to me making me suffer they're making me go into the scary place and get stuck needles in me it seems terrible but of course we know we get it we see that this that this small amount of suffering is saving that child out in the long run from a far worse amount of suffering from disease and sickness and that's what it's like for us as well because if we're talking about an infinite God we can't assume to know how that God would act even if that God was acting for our good I finished at this so Stephen Fry talks about the child with with bone cancer and you know how dare you he says he says if I ever meet God how dare you I'm just gonna ask what is Stephen Fry offering offering people like that because from the atheistic perspective and I know they're not they're not as rude to say this but from the atheistic point of view how far from even from a God is evil point of view you can't offer any hope for someone in that situation you can you must necessarily say if you can't observe any kind of good me goodness or purpose or meaning for your suffering then there is none your suffering is meaningless and it's hopeless you know what do you say to this to the child with bone cuts and what you say to that mother with the three children who has cancer we say there is hope and that hope is well-founded thank you take some fares cons and call on Quora to get a toothpaste for the practitioner here here [Applause] yeah my phone's a bit dead okay so I'm going to start off by just telling you why what Jason said is probably wrong so he starts off by telling us that God is existing but I tell you that's flawed because it would mean God Himself had to be created by something which doesn't make much sense but I'm not here to dispute that because for the debate to happen we have to just believe that God exists we have to take him at his best that he's real okay he then goes on to explain to us that there are lots of good people there but I tell you there are also lots of really awful people I'd say the people who are really awful the people are really good are in the minimum in the world most of us are just kind of mediocre we're just kind of alright people like I don't like this sounds really awful but how many of us are going to save millions of lives and I know that like the little things matter but also the amount of people who are bad in the world we see we take only the bad people as the people who have killed hundreds so surely to God we could take we should take the amount of bad the amount of good people as the people who only save hundreds it doesn't make much sense on that point he also tells us that life could be a lot worse I can that life could be a lot worse I tell you life can be a lot better my life could be better if I didn't have to look at the news and see that millions of children have been bombed in Syria the world could be a lot better if the world wasn't actually dying in front of my eyes the world could be a lot better if even my own friends personal life wasn't as bad as it is so like that doesn't really make enough sense to me for me to have that as an argument I can't see how it makes sense yeah feel free I'm gonna explain that when I get a horrible don't worry so [Applause] so Jason tells us that we can't just execute tells us that these things are character building and it makes me appreciate life more but I can tell you it's fully done a lot of people who are like who have an awful childhood people whose parents didn't appreciate them as opposed to their children in Syria will appreciate life much more layer that their village have been bombed they can see that life is great I don't think that makes much sense to me like I don't understand her negative experience makes your good ones better surely scarred life would just be alright if it wasn't awful all the time he tells us it's for the good we just can't understand it and uses the explanations the vaccines but why doesn't God let us understand a at least someone understands it in the vaccine situation no one on this earth really understands it truly and if God was actually not as bad as he seems he probably tell us ok now on to my main substantive so we must understand for this debate to be good like to work we have to understand that good and evil are in two completely opposite scales most people in this room are evil but also really good on the same scale so the most like to see is God better or worse and if he's good he's probably not evil and if he's worse he's probably evil ok so it's three main points and the way we appreciate God through most organized religion is so oppressive to most people and there are either two explanations for that God has told people who are oppressing other people to oppress them pretty shit or God has created evil people who now have the power and corruption to oppress people also pretty shit or and then my second point is and God has caused harm to many people through natural disasters ok so let's just talk about how God wants praise and thanks God asks me every day to pray whenever anything significant happens most religions would like encouraged in the beginning to pray in the morning to pray when you eat and to pray when you sleep that's what most religions and organized religions ask for God who is supposedly like in a fatherly figure in most religions tell us we have to thank him every time I do anything I have to thank God for anything I've ever done in my life but because none of it is my merit God tells us that like when we go to sleep we most Hankin for the wonderful day we've had no matter how shite my day was so it's like it's instilled it over and then like if this doesn't even make any sense because no one actually because most people don't actually do it because they actually I paid for most people do because fear is instilled into them but if they don't they burn in hell forever that's a pretty evil concept to begin with if anyone in this world and his God is forgiving as he sees I'm he says oh look listen they're going to hell or even like like left back and that's worse they're going to purgatory purgatory is also a pretty awful place to be it's Crill regard to demand this of us it's real for God to threaten his children we're punishments so severe that like of everlasting hell it's cruel of God to demand from us when he knows and like understands us so much he knows that we are inferior to him yet you still demand so much of us even when God knows how fair he still punish those responsible Eve when we were like they were starving and they stole an apple I think that's like an analogy for sex or whatever but like like basically Eve was mark 7 and took an apple and they were paying for it for a millions of years to come that's a pretty shite ideology imagine I was like my life like I used to be mad when he's a child who I'm fat like that's the way it is every time i Rob food and my mouth press she went to the neighbor was like oh they're bone cancer child they're pretty pretty screwed in my opinion anyways I'm sorry for my ancestor sins that probably didn't exist but I don't taint the whole world as they have to polish we've suffered enough for their will mistaken there's no reason for this to happen even though Jason says it makes us appreciate the good more it doesn't make sense in my head like it just I also like God is like as wise as we believe him to be and as all-seeing and he would understand why compare my capability as a human to be an absolute like if God was there like as lovely and as kind as he was he would know that I can say things that can ruin a friend's life he would know that I have the capability as a person to start a war he would know that people have the capability to be corrupt when they have power and I tell you like if he really did care he would never create a people like this you can say that this happens because of nurture but God have created an environment in which were nurtured you can say that this is because of nature but God created the genes that we have if the God is what we seem to be God isn't as cool as we know him to be it's I like as cool as my nan was frightened into believing him he is like he's just not that great if this is the world we live in if I want to say my first point is all related to God because humans are the ones who will force the religion if upward to say that look feel like the church or an e like like organized religion isn't God then they have to understand that God created those people so in a way every person is God because that's the way this debate plays out there is no way on earth that he can't be did you have a question that's great but he doesn't bless everyone in the world with shelter he doesn't bless everyone in the world with food he blesses some of us who are privileged enough to be greedy to rob them of that so like it doesn't really make much sense like you don't like it just doesn't make sense because we in this room are blessed we in this room can appreciate lots of logs reason life but not everyone in the world has a if God was as great as he really was he would understand that everyone needs it and he would understand a human's capability to take that way from other people and he would have measures in place to stop that happening but he just doesn't so I beg you to propose [Applause] good evening everyone my name is Scott I am contrary to popular belief the chaplain in the Student Center and I've had some interesting moments without recently parked yesterday outside the chaplaincy got a note on my car saying don't Park here anymore we said chanting – so I got clamped outside the church and no one believes my car belongs to a chaplain and then last week or two weeks ago I was in church and I was chatting to a guy I was like yeah I'm the student in UCD any worry I mean I'm the chaplain I used to do one of the chaplains in UCD and he he said to me off I remember when we had real chaplains what I understand at the same time like let's face it to paraphrase Pete Holmes if there is a multiverse and multiple realities this is the only one in which I'm not a tattoo covered barista on Instagram and I'm a chaplain inutility the motion for item debate tonight is kind of a strange one and it's fascinating because it presupposes at the very least the possibility of the existence of God and there's a huge burden of proof on the proposition to define evil in that argument and argue that God fits into that category and it's a tough one to argue the flaws of a being that you actively do not believe in it's happened every time we should have known it was coming in on the other hand I struggle with it because it kind of feels also like my job is in the balance tonight like if I don't get this right what am I doing with this job for some of us this is an interesting mental exercise and for others it's a conversation about the foundation upon which we base our lives as a result it's been hard to know how to approach it I'm in two minds do I speak to your head soar to your heart is this a purely intellectual matter than logic is the best weapon and I can argue as the classical theologians would have that if we assume that there is a God which the motion does and he created the world then the definition of good and evil rests with him not with us and therefore this God can only be good even if we do not recognize that to be goodness there's two problems with this the first is it leaves me cold and the second is this kind of purely objective intellectual discussion of God has absolutely nothing to do with why I'm a person of faith for me my faith has never been a matter of the head it's always been a matter of the heart I'm a Christian but I'm not a Christian because I objectively wade up the reasons for and against God I never aspired to be religious which is a really loaded word that often doesn't mean the same thing to me that it does to others when choosing things for my life to include I didn't click the box religious and then go to the drop-down menu and pick Christian it makes this hard to debate because it's less something that I shout from the rooftops and it's more something that I whisper to myself on the dark nights of the soul and this life has some long cold nights for me my faith is an answer to the question what does it mean to be human and for me it means to be made in the image of God well then what does God is what is God like as the writer one of my favorite writers Bryan's on says he says it's constantly God is like Jesus and Jesus is what God is like and if Jesus is what God is like I am the reason I'm a Christian is because I'm absolutely captivated and fascinated by the person of Jesus the proposition has argued that we look at the suffering that we should look at the suffering of the world and they're right in my spiritual direction with people I often say to them if you have never doubted God then you either underestimate the amount of pain this world is in we don't care I remember a hearing a brilliant story recent yeah sure go ahead and if I stopped here it probably would be but I'm gonna take I'm gonna say I'm gonna take it on for what it means to me um I remember hearing a story few years ago about a father who said to his son and when you finish school I will I will take he said all his kids when you graduate we're gonna take you on a trip taking around the world and he's the only son said I want to go to Europe one it's for around here and he told the story of his father taking him to Europe and and then showing up at our outfit and um I'm going through the tour and understanding the history and his dad turning to at the end and said anything that you say about God has to make sense when you're standing here and that's the challenge of our language it's the challenge that to be honest a lot of things don't make sense in that space but for me what my faith is teaching me about the response to suffering is that is embodied in Jesus in one of my favorite passages in John 11 Jesus come it comes and he shows up place and and sometimes they can feel like God is like and he shows up Layton is his friend Lazarus has died and his two sisters are there they both turned to him at the same question the same accusation really they said him if you had been here this wouldn't have happened and they're right and he doesn't tell them how their story's gonna end in eventually he goes on at least according to the story depending on what you believe he goes on to raise Lazarus from the dead but in that moment he enters into their pain and he weeps alongside them and for me that's what I'm learning is that there is no good answer I'm suffering because that's the what the question about this is the it's a question of how we respond to it on the cross Jesus cries out Eli Eli lama sabachthani which means my God my God why have you forsaken me and this for me is what makes me so fascinated with this character of Jesus who God is like he enters into our pain our brokenness our heartbreak and that deep dreaded sense of the absence of God before he dies he looks around at those who killed him and he says Father forgive them for they know not what they do he does not look at us in angry judgment but in gracious compassion because he understands how this life is to live and how hard it is to figure it out niphas the God that I believe in and I believe it's the God who Christianity proclaims and when I was younger when I was growing up I was really struggled with the with this question I was always kind of believed in God in kind of a kind of traditional abstract way but I always doubted whether or not he was good these days I find that the conversation has changed I now always believe that God is good but there are some days it's harder than other to believe others to believe that he's real [Applause] so I don't believe that any good actually exists but I could be wrong and if I'm wrong it's perfectly clear to me that any God that does exist must be absolutely evil now strictly speaking before concluding that what I should really do is make sure I know which god I'm talking about so for example there are some people who believe in a God that is fallible and in that case the creation of say deadly volcanoes that have caused so much needless suffering in the world it could be attributed to merely a divine mistake so such a God would then clearly not be evil he would just be an incompetent moron but in order to address the issue I think what I'll do is try and make the case that Jesus Christ is absolutely evil and not least because he appears to be with us this evening but don't worry of Dilla almost all of my arguments relate to almost every God and certainly every flavor of the Abrahamic heir gods so Jesus Christ is absolutely evil in both word and deed and in his own words jesus promised John of Patmos that he would kill the children of Jezebel for the sins of her mother now murdering innocent children is obviously evil in fact the punishment of children for the sins of their parents is a recurring motif in the Christian story depending on his mood the Christian God promises to continue this practice through either the third or the fourth generation and if I began murdering the people in this room for the sins committed by your grip grandparents in the 19th century what do you think I was evil I certainly hope so and many Christians are surprised when they read the words of Jesus about murders of murdering innocent children in this country the religion curriculum taught in schools is almost exclusively Christian but somehow they managed to leave out the various admonishments that Jesus issues for the murder of children many Christians prefer to believe that a Yahweh may have become a little carried away with all of the smiting the Old Testament but the New Testament was when Jesus makin mind / convinced his curmudgeonly father to calm down a bit this view of Jesus as a character that is detached from the Old Testament is absolute nonsense the trying god of Christianity does not depict Jesus as a character that is entirely independent from Yahweh Christianity even invented a word for this we're told that Jesus is consubstantial with the father so whenever God decided to dry in the entire world with the exception of one lucky art resident family Jesus did that so Jesus is therefore not merely evil he is in fact a genocidal monster who murdered more people more quickly than Hitler Stalin and Mao combined furthermore when he had the opportunity to distance himself from the evil of the Old Testament Jesus instead enthusiastically endorsed it in fact he insisted that not one letter should be changed from all of those Old Testament laws so Jesus is especially keen to ensure that any woman who is not a virgin on her wedding night should be stoned to death on her father's doorstep yes [Applause] hey yes so what I'm arguing is that Jesus Christ specifically is obviously evil and I'm gonna come on to explain why that extends to any Creator God and so if if the second coming of Christ occurs in the next five minutes and you find Jesus Christ here arguing that women should be stoned to death for premarital sex do you think Jesus would be evil I certainly hope so I will admit that Jesus is both in favor and against stoning people to death which doesn't seem to be get him off of it much because Jesus offers his own novel and original evil words the odds of those in the Old Testament and the parable of the weeds Jesus talks about a farmer separating weeds from his crop in order to burn them subsequently he is invented he explained the meaning of this parable in the elucidation Jesus departs from the allegorical language of metaphor and instead he offers an explicit prophecy and his prophecy explains that the parable is about his own second coming and he promises that he will burn sinners and a furnace of fire where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth now I think we can all agree today that when Isis burns people alive that is evil in fact I think everyone here today can agree that no matter what transgressions the unfortunate victim may or may not have been guilty of when Isis burns people alive that is always evil so here we have a specific case when we can measure empirically exactly how easily how evil Jesus is and and we can compare that to the behavior of Isis so when Isis emulates people they only do it for the short time that it takes their victim to expire Jesus makes the extra effort to ensure that he Emel its people in conscious torment and fire for all eternity so objectively on empirically speaking Jesus is infinitely more in evil and Isis so I would submit to you that an empirical measurement of God as being infinitely more evil than Isis at their worst should be able to persuade this house that God is evil but even without Jesus explaining his own evil nature in his own words we can see his evil all around us and his deeds Mexico is a Christian country when the recent awful earthquake began to shake that region there is little doubt that some number of innocent children began praying to Jesus to be saved now just picture that scene for a moment we have an innocent little girl who has spent the entirety of her short life diligently following the instructions of her parish priest the earthquake is a feature of the world that Jesus is fabricated on when it begins the little girl praise the Jesus to be saved from the earthquake of his creation Jesus listens carefully to the prayers and for some number of children he decides that they should die slowly and darkness and terror and an agony this is the purest possible evil we can imagine I cannot imagine a more pure evil than that so these very obvious evils that we observe all around us in the world today and that all variations of the Abrahamic God on all of our creator gods yeah so I think natural events do have natural causes and it's the religious who need to explain why they propose a Creator God created the universe that includes these natural disasters without being evil Santa's don't have to explain good no sound test ever proposed that earthquakes are cleaner evil it's the religious who proposed that a good God created the universe that includes all of this evil in it so it's the onus is on the on the religious to explain how that evil can come about without an evil God just answer very briefly and irrespective even if I grant you that the earthquake was not caused by God God has the ability to see if whoever he wants a two-year-old child is drowning in a foot of water beside me and I neglect the sea of the child you wouldn't say I am therefore not evil because I didn't push the child into the water God is perfectly capable of saving the children he listens to their prayers and he decides the best thing to do is for those children to die and terror and agony and that and Deitz God is evil [Applause] ladies and gentlemen our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond our measure ladies and general iterating Starkel slightly faster how y'all doing there's no microphone I don't really know what to do with my hands I'll try to keep it quite right normal my name my name is Kevin I'm here to speak on the opposition of this motion because let's be honest if God really was evil I'm going to speak on the side that is less likely to get smoked or or smitten or its might it doesn't matter doesn't matter at all first off I'm not going to defend the Bible I'm not gonna defend the Bible for one very simple reason I have never played a game of Chinese whispers where the same message from the stack got all the way to the end so I don't think a game of Chinese whispers that went on for 2,000 years if something I need to defend I don't really place much emphasis on the Bible so I'm what's gonna take a general overview of God kind of the same as I forgot your name Jesus so first off this is actually answering exactly what Jesus talked about so Seagal is all-powerful and if she all-seeing his Creator view of the universe and apparently he is evil well I've got to be honest like I've had a pretty reasonable day you know I got on my last lecture early I found who could in the ground and I got spider-man on my socks like like it's nice for me now if you're right and saying that God is evil like he's just not very good at it an all-powerful evil being wouldn't allow these things that wouldn't allow these things like honestly if I was all-powerful and evil I would like I'm gonna like turn off orgasms why not yeah fuck yourselves won't do any good suddenly every guy in the room would know what it feels like what no we'll know what his girlfriend feels like after rocking her world absolutely nothing or like I'd like I'd make one of your socks permanently wet literally anything like it that's what you can do when you're all-powerful evil like yes so but this doesn't happen we live in the world for happiness as possible now we hear the answer for this fear not like oh there's if there's a reason for this evil for it is good to happen and you're an evil god it's fine and the reason that we're given is that oh if you have something good and it's taken away from you that's that's evil er than anything you can possibly come up with I just frankly disagree with this like I think pure torture for eternity it's probably far far worse than having a nice while and then torture for eternity it doesn't make sense that taking that away is sudden somehow worse if anything that's just like a failure of imagination to see how painful things should actually be no thank you so in terms of that I am saying that because we are perfect capable of happiness in life that God the most they could possibly prove from that line of argumentation is you know that God is passive or he has better things to do that's as far as you can go with that now this does mean that I do have to give some justification for evil with no good god I'll give that a lash later so what happens I'm actually going to talk about today later I'm gonna talk to you about freewill but now I'm gonna talk to you about like the known unknown so I don't know if that's the right way describing it that's why I describe so science bases its knowledge on might be observable world and it changes its worldview depending on new evidence emerging and that's fine borås human that God exists and if we assume this God exists in this debate that means we have to assume all the caveats that being a god comes with it I'm aware of this hand moving a lot but you have to you have to take in all the caveats such as there being something more than this world such as this plane of existence not being the only one now what does that mean that means it might be something more that something more could be an afterlife that something more could be an alternate universe or that something more cuz the speedup we're powering Rick's spaceship like I don't really know I'm really happy that you got that records I thought that would just go again no that's great but yes so analyzing God on a purely physical basis is insufficient because you neglecting to engage with a large portion of what makes God God it's like you're trying to measure pressure with a thermometer that just doesn't work so this is important for three reasons firstly the propositions frame of reference is too narrow they need to engage on a spiritual basis to actually be able to come in close to proving something about God because the spiritual basis is Right God operates secondly it means that this offer is a possible justification for the suffering on earth now look all natural disasters death and terminal illnesses are heartbreaking yet I cannot confidently assert that these things happen for no reason because I've only ever felt the physical consequences this is exactly why the vaccine example is still relevant and applicable in this debate and the third reason why this is important is because it means that we actually just don't have all the data like we don't know the full story it's like so we can't confident start anything in college terms it's as if you've done an exam you're coming out of it you're feeling devastated and you're bitching that your lecture is screwed you and therefore must be evil but you don't actually know if he's failed or passed you yet so that is what we're talking about here that's why I'm calling this the airman of known unknowns it's not I don't know they're for God it's I don't know they're for you guys don't know either and you have to prove something in this debate so that's why we're okay with that I go ahead I'm allowed to do that mr. BAE for the simple reason that we have to prove that God is evil I'm happy to believe any God that is not entirely evil not entirely good as Scott correctly brought up God created everything God created Morrow's therefore he defines what is moral and what is not Mauro like years ago we used to think that killing animals was fine now we're all turning vegan models are so fluid that we can't define it we cannot define it so it turns out I'm happy to say that God may or may not be evil I'm happy to say that there isn't a like this is essentially a false dichotomy I don't have to prove that he's entirely good I'm just have to say that he's not entirely evil or at least that they can't prove it that's why that is still fine so still standing up in this debate and saying who knows and like a fancy manner is like it's a bit though like it's not a sexy argument it's not really real no of accredits so let's do this ladies and gentlemen if life was designed why was it not designed to be perfect I said earlier that an evil God would never allow any happiness so why is the converse not true it's because we're human but most importantly were allowed to be human we have our faults in our failings but that allows us to define ourselves if we live in a paradise we would all be one we would all have to be perfect a perfection is singular there's one thing to aspire to there was one perfect but seeing as we are human we have our faults and defects that allows us to define ourselves allows us be good at what we're good at a lot of time that's good that's great love fuck that means lots of evil things happen evils in this world of manmade we created economics and in doing so we created poverty we cut down forests we scorch the earth we created plantations and in doing so created slavery all of these evils are the choice of men and this would not happen in paradise but in paradise we don't exist because there can be no individuals because we've been conflict reach other in paradise this is why in all good God can allow evils to happen because he is because if he gave us a perfect life he would not be able to let us live it ourselves he'll be essentially taking that life from us he'd be tyrannical God balances evil with the inherent good that his life this answer is essentially what Cora's talking about when she says that some people are dicks and that's terrible this is why that happens because if we do not have free will we are not ourselves we are not human it is easy to curse the sky and demands from meaning who toppled from the heavens no thank you if God wanted us all to be in pain we would be if God wanted us all to be in our knees in prayer we would be but something more is being asked of us we me were being but here to do it ourselves and that like that might be not be happy enough for all of you for all of you but God could be a tyrant he could force us to abide by his laws or even give us paradise on the man who's not doing either of those things so maybe he's evil or maybe he's all good or maybe he doesn't even exist and maybe that just doesn't matter because you have a life and your life is being defined by you your actions are what you will be remembered for evil cannot afford you to act autonomously because it when evil knows that when we act autonomously we make medicine evil Californians to have our own agency because evil knows that we will fight this disease and we will try to make our lives worth living because our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond all measure our deepest fear is that we are in control and that control isn't opportunity which evil can never afford us you are the person who choose to be your evil and your success and your light is your own if God was evil not only would you not have the opportunity control that life you would not have it at all so in the end ladies and gentlemen I do not know why disease exists I do not know why we point bombs on each other I do not know why freddo's are $0.45 anymore but why do know is that doesn't prove that God is evil if God was evil and he could hear us you can be damn sure that anyone who stood against him would get smited or smote smell smoke Sloat see we bring grammar – all these things – ladies and gentlemen I also know if God's evil you would have to listen to me speak all night so thank you very much [Applause] the case for the proposition here [Applause] alright ladies and gentlemen I come here tonight to write around that I committed a long time ago when I was in first year the Ellen Page had this very motion as the fascist debate and I was speaking in the exact same position I'm in today on the other side was a deeply Catholic young woman who I personally had invited in because I reckoned it would be funny she was she was very American kind of Catholic the kind who studied science but would interrupt a lecture to tell everyone that she didn't believe in evolution the kind who vetoed a class night out in the gorge because she wouldn't go to that kind of bar and of course what she said in the freshest debate was ridiculous but none of us challenged her on her views because at the end of her speech she did a really cool backflip and that made up for her being a bad person that speakers name ladies and gentlemen was Katie ASCO and [Applause] I think that debate was where she first learned that students would go along with all sorts of nonsense it was packaged with a fun gimmick beaverton nastic serbian microwaves on campus [Applause] so for my small part in causing this mess sorry guys whoops and while by the looks of things I don't think any of today's opposition can do backflips it's still important to address what they've said because if we don't then we could end up with another ASCO Fiasco on our hands in a few years time I'll start with what Jason said and even though it wasn't the topic of debate he did make gestures towards establishing that God exists said you know everything that exists must have a cause the universe exists the universe must have a cause something something God I think Jason made a massive leap between Oh something special much must exist and it might be kind of magical to its God like I think you me I think it needs a lot more work to actually convince us of anything there he then tells us about cosmic coincidences he tells us well you know it looks unlikely thus the universe should exist polite you know at the risk of sounding facetious like define your probability space tell us how unlikely it is that the universe wouldn't that the universe exists or doesn't because I don't think that's actually a very well-defined question and even then if it is really unlikely tell us how it's less likely than god existing because you know some really unlikely things do happen like everyone in this room is one in a million we're all the lucky sperm in this room give yourselves a pat in the back and then scouts tell Scott tells us that for him believing in God was a decision from the heart like I I just feel like you know for me religion is too important to be a decision from the heart I think I need decision worth more than two euro it's probably something that you should use your head for first and then maybe use your heart if it's a coin flip I think when you talk about using your heart to make a decision decision like that that's a decision that you keep making every day you are sort of an insinuating does you're suppressing you're suppressing your head the whole time you're making that decision with your heart like there is a voice in yours there is a voice in your heads that wants to weigh weigh this up objectively but your heart just keeps telling it no I don't think that makes sense I and I wouldn't be happy trusting myself to make other decisions if I'd made a huge decision like that based on my heart and not based on evidence and then quickly on to Kevin he says the world can't be perfect with humans in it look we're not we're not asking for perfection but we think there are a few improvements that God could have made that no one would have had any problem with mosquitoes do not need to exist literally nothing bad would happen if mosquitoes no longer existed people get there people who get cluster headaches every day there according to the people who get cluster headaches and have given childbirth cluster headaches are worse than childbirth they get that every day why did God make that happen there is no reason no there's no explanation for that based on you know humans being evil no thank you killed well why do I care about this debate because it obviously wouldn't affect my life if I were persuaded of the good character of a god I don't believe in oh we have no more it would be of no more consequence to me than if I became convinced that Voldemort was actually a misunderstood civil rights activist standing up against the Mogul oppressors no I care about this debate because of what it means when your source of morality is someone who's evil by any human standard of the word and that's what I mean P appealing to our intuitive common sense understanding of what evil is because I don't think it's actually more complicated than that and the all-powerful guards that we grew up with is intuitively evil because that's the word we'd use to describe anyone who deliberately inflicts the pointless suffering that God does a world full of gratuitous pain a world with hurricanes and malaria and people who put on of each year the seche that's not a world created by a nice person let's look at some of the reasons people give for God not being evil once did one defense which Jason and Kev use is basically that God sometimes does good things like he heals some of the people that he gave cancer to or he once helped you find your unbelief when you thought you lost us I like to call this the oj defense because oj simpson is also a nice person according to those who spend time with him he's very polite and helpful and he's done a fair bit of charity work but that doesn't undo all those other things he did and to paraphrase Jason if AJ was really evil wouldn't he be a lot worse I think Oh Jay Simpson meets our definition of evil for the same reason that God does a bad person who sometimes does good deeds is still a bad person and like at least there's a possibility that OJ might one day show remorse for what he's done but our all-knowing all-loving God doesn't make mistakes and by the way if you personally like to think of God as an imperfect being who's just doing their best like some comic book hero then like that's fine but that's no longer the god of the Christians or the Muslims of the Jews so if you want some source material you're either going to have to find a new religion on Wikipedia or start writing your own fanfiction go on keV so this is an issue of perspective do you give the example of like cluster headaches I don't really not there we're saying that those are evil as some people have them because we're used to not having it everybody had them that would be used to be complaining that we complain about something much much worse we have the life that we have now that is why you're able to complain about other things now [Applause] firstly I think there's very inconsistent of God's to create us so that we would intuitively think that the things God does was evil I think he could have thought that one through a bit more being all-knowing and stuff secondly I can't remember what the second point was because I'm hung over another defense of God which is what jate which Jason also uses is that all suffering is part of his vast eternal plan that we can't understand really but it's it's a tremendous plan and you've never seen anything like it before because God is the best plans and like yeah you can't explain anything by saying it's part of God's secret plan but you can explain you can't explain anything by seeing saying it's part of God's yuka plan but I don't see what that's meant to do for anyone like whenever anything bad happens to me I'm not sure how it's meant to comfort me that some weirdo far away has peer dangerous to happen as part of his grand scheme that I don't know about it certainly didn't make the people in the Saw movies feel better that their pain was actually orchestrated by some psychopath he was getting off and watching them suffer they say religion is supposed to offer some kind of meaning to life but there's very little meaning in being told that the bizarre chaotic universe we live in was actually designed by someone who knew what they were doing but whom we can never hope to understand that doesn't explain anything about our lives being told that our pain was given to us by a mysterious sugar daddy just adds a layer of obfuscation if life without God is observed as absurdity then life with God is just absurdity smothered in secret sauce if you can swallow the stuff about God's plan though then it becomes much easier to accept anything that God tells you if God tells you the gay people are sinners or their contraception is the devil then it's really not such a hard thing to believe when you've already accepted that the Lord in His infinite wisdom invented crab lice and had Noah put two of them on the boat [Applause] sensitive subjects for some people well I think the best arguments regard not being evil which Kevin does bring up is that God defines what evil is because he's literally God and morality is what he says it is and if God says he's not evil then he can't be evil and this is a pretty watertight argument the only problem is if you abandon your human moral intuition and just use God as your source of morality then you open the door to justifying any atrocity as long as you can convince yourself that guard endorses ish no and that said I think most religious people most of the time don't look into don't look immediately to God for their morality they just use their human intuition I'd wager that's why even though all the religions differ wildly in the sorts of gods they believe in they differ much less in what they consider right and wrong but the devil is in the edge cases where people appeal directly to God given moral codes and this is a problem because it's so easy to find God doing evil you can exploit most holy books to persuade people into doing terribly inhumane things things that people would find intuitively abhorrent be it persecuting those who are different from you or going to war purely for the benefit of rulers who don't care about you and throughout history God has been a vehicle for some people to get away with terrible crimes no thank you and I'm not saying you're evil if you believe in God I'm not here because I care what you believe but I am saying that God that the God most of us grew up with is a bad person by our own human standards and the idea of God has allowed otherwise decent people to commit read Falak against one another and that ladies and gentlemen is something we should care about no matter what we believe in I'm proud to propose I thank the secret sconce and call on Abdullah Allah Allah apologies Al Andalus t2 can complete the face hello and I'd like to thank everyone here for attending and it's very interesting and well quite lively and contentious debate say the least now many people have seen catastrophes around the world which caused them to doubt hurricane hurricane EMA wars famines the election of Donald Trump the Ryanair mass cancellations was the worst but we have to look deeper into and see the bigger picture now first of all I know you're going to say you're going to say you talk about against God being evil but aren't you part of a civilization that was spread by the sword subject in common people's around the world imposing their beliefs and values on everybody well up to you I say this look I'm not here to defend the British Empire [Applause] now we have to ask this question is God evil but we also have to ask what is your belief regarding God in the first place before we even answer this question see if you're an atheist we have to ask what understanding of God are you claiming is evil what evidence are you going to advanced Christian understanding Muslim understanding Jewish understanding the moment understanding which understanding in particular are you a atheist against the Muslim understanding all the the Christian listening reminds me of a friend of mine who was a convert to Islam he was from Northern Ireland he converted to Islam and people asked him you know are you Protestant or Catholic in in that kind of Shibboleth way to determine which I think the legion's you have and it's and then I become Muslim say ok but are you a Protestant Muslim or a Catholic Muslim now if you are an atheist you will have to abstain you have to vote in abstentions motion because you don't believe God exists and like the first speaker pointed out he argued that there was Eco evidence to show God is both good all good and all evil or at least good or evil so there's equal evidence well that's even more more reason why you have to abstain because you can't argue any one way if you're a deist and you believe God is not omniscient then he makes universe but doesn't really care about it or has no power to affect afterwards and you too also have to abstain if you believe in Cthulhu by the HP Lovecraft you too also have to abstain because the God in the Cthulhu mist mythos is mythos is not Cthulhu it's as of off who makes makes it it creates universes blindly doesn't really doesn't know it's doing so it's not evil so even Cthulhu bites have to abstain so then my real question is really or rather where I'd like to take this argument is what should people who are theists believe where should they vote well let's let's really look at the question I don't really have to refute the proposition by showing that God is good I merely have to show that God is not evil and we look at it pleasure and pain we arguing as to does God support pleasure or unlimited pleasure or does he support unlimited pain and this is where our the bait lies I actually say it's a false dichotomy you see you eat to live you don't live to eat pain and pleasure are serve a purpose a motivational purpose in all living creatures you are averse to pain and you seek pleasure that actually sets a higher purpose than just itself it's not end in itself and this is where we're mistaking having this debate first of furthermore if you believe in an omnipotent God who doesn't need anything why does he or it if you prefer for the feminists the audience why would whatever why why would God want suffering God doesn't get benefit from suffering doesn't it does increase the sauceless because God is meant to be omnipotent and independent doesn't require anything so what benefit does he get from suffering and we can all agree that God created life a life that has consciousness that survives that reproduces that develops and a diversity of life in all kinds of different forms that from what we can observe on the earth this is what we can observe is what we can agree on so yes you might point to individual cases or even mass sections of cases where there's been deaf sir or or killings or suffering but on aggregate life survives life persevere life develops and even in those cases of suffering there is it is still part of parcel of life but more importantly I want to mention some more special than life justice which is quite interesting you see if God was a evil God why not just leave a barren void why create life in the first place with consciousness now I'm not going to answer the purpose of life in this discussion because time is ticking however what I will say is that consciousness proves one thing in fact the only thing they can prove is that whatever God intended for us he intended for us to bear witness to it that's the purpose of consciousness and pain a pleasure are part of that experience it's not an end in itself that's the mistake we've been making all along I look I'd also say that to say God is evil makes mistake makes the mistake of anthropomorphize ation and am prefer centrist ism we believe that the whole universe has to conform to our standards to our criteria like God is some cosmic with genie that grant you wishes or 'santa so exactly what metric of evil exists how do you Metra size evil or good that is that that's a question that even again would lead an atheist to vote an abstention because what is evil or good apart from subjectively what you view is yourself interest but I'll say this I don't think God is a cosmic wish genie which is why I'm I wish n't be disappointed if he doesn't answer each and every single one of our Christmas wish list also we shouldn't view him as some external interloper that interferes in our life and is telling us what to do when he at his presence sustains our the very subatomic particles that form the structure of our bodies our very existence if you're a theist is constantly sustained by God so he's not detached from you or someone that makes demands of you without without any reason to you actually depend on him in the most fundamental sense so kind of I reiterate if you are an atheist you can only vote in an abstention of this by the admission in a way of the the arguments used by the proposition likewise if you are a deist or a Cthulhu worshipper however however if you are a feast you can only vote that God whatever he is and whatever he intends for us and whatever conscience proves it certainly proves that he's not evil and maybe as a last point as a very last point I have the most definitive argument that God isn't evil you see we all gathered here today to the bay and question and some even have mocked the concept of God claim his evil and yet after this debate there will be pizza and drink for everyone surely God is good [Applause] so before we we move on to the question-and-answer I'm just gonna add pause for a second and can we just give a round refers to all the speakers involving so just briefly the structure of what happens next and so if you have a question you can raise your hand and we'll pick we probably have time for five or six questions I'm afraid the learn through the debate has meant but hopefully you'll get to chat to people afterwards if you've any more questions and come back and ask more questions in future for the rest of our house debate and when you ask a question you can address it to a side where you can address it to a speaker if you adjust to a sides people on the side can choose who wants to answer it they have a minute to answer your question then the other side can responds they have a minute answer your question okay evil so for example the margin comity referendum now that was announced is going to be an abortion rather than small support so if we're treating morality as though it's purely you know the whim of the majority then on what grounds are we saying things are actually objectively evil or they're not evil so is it just that oh whoa we don't happen to like this so we'd better say that God is evil with you have an actual kind of more definable or measurable metric of things that are good and evil that would exist external to an authority but although my authority to tell us like how do you say that people have good exists in the absence of God such that you can mention up next [Applause] hey yes so thanks okay with and we had a few definitions that is purely illegal origin and in terms of good game design in relation to the promotion of wealthy but a miniature fucking on em is actually the youth probe product so it did describe a good and evil as concepts that are independent of God then what do you need gold far more promise problems do you say these things exist of Yvonne what tells us so exactly where we're hearing this pallet or ourselves there's not going to calm anyone out of the sky and explain what we're about are for us so we have to figure out ourselves the best way to live together and using reciprocity using empathy and using all of the facilities that we have evolved to understand what's the best way for resolve the lip here in the plummet together and so let's frame up two challenges that people have the answer I'm gonna let say I'm just gonna kiss me yeah I'm just gonna like you can continue I throw after each beyond fine I'm just gonna let the opposition respond what we're trying to remember what is even AMA and the answer bridging being in pure evil is on a purely physical and material basis and things that were feeling that but God by definition and because we're all saying earlier said it's Mary Michael by definition we can't clearly save physically and materialistically but that's how we judge God if this is what they buy whether God exists or not like I have this matter but seniors were asking if he's evil or not if he exists therefore we have to take another things therefore the suffering that they talk about on earth you're not the only piece of data that we can look at what I do it should be thank you yeah that's I just time the untrue that's all right just so we can make sure we get as many questions as we can and yeah from the top suffering suffering from my life in general is seen as a motivator in some civilizations suffering some people cannot bring themselves suffering it will have like monetary aspect some people don't understand ice cream sells ice suffering so why were the cause misplaced so preying on people he cannot themselves in yourself like this all right to kind of clarify what I've said reiterate dish I said that there's actually something higher than just pleasure and suffering which is consciousness and essence bearing witness I mean the universe for more we can see anyway the mostly inanimate at least what we can observe is mostly inanimate the universe is generally inanimate but you have these parts of the universe which are conscience conscience and can actually observe itself and observe it living and changing and coming to an end which is all things changing the universe so my point is that the if you don't wanna invest in any particular religion the minimum at least you could say is that wherever God requires of us he wants us to bear witness to his creation that's a higher goal than just pain suffering which is what why I say this offering higher than that you know what's interesting is okay I said not to invest in a ticker religion however most for many religions believe in a setting of accounts in in a nother reality or that comes after this of stigmatism here are some whatever you want to call it whereby humans specifically are subject to justice those who were poor will will not be as humble in the hereafter and those who were rich and warty will be very humble in here after that putting it mildly or whatever so in essence I thought to be more particular village religion but there are should we say understandings of God where there is an account for the humans experience of open either thank you yeah just for the opposition along mr. bata came up with that Oh God might have a secret plan or his rod the city's own moon is divorced from human morality but if you use the same argument for someone who commits genocide and you say oh well they have their own morality or they have their own plans or they think what they're doing is necessary we can also agree that subjectively important so whatever is his frame of reference we can offer and you're basically you're right like like literally poison that's being like I feel like you know something that that still it doesn't make it poisoning that's poisonous the fact that it's being used such a way that can make secondary have a better result than there was before hand so the main the main life I suppose my response to that would be like well if someone can is not much genocide if any other secret Gladwell not a person you know but the fact we're talking about God you have to necessarily say that someone that in 50 powerful so like first you have to admit has the ability to bring some goodness out of any suffering but these are powerful and I guess also if you even as we've had like selected self if you looked at the idea of an all-powerful being all good you say well there must be some exploits and even we don't know it and it's not unreasonable to say that the cooking explanation we don't know because we'll be beyond us because we require that creature from God that's going to be input another aspect a little bit egotism time if you do accept God so someone even for all their suffering in life in life they will be like perfect happiness for eternity afterwards so I'm just gonna let that sorry if that's okay yeah you can say yes to the answer the question directly I think the standard that the opposition have created is to initially assume that God must be all-powerful and and then the further assume that if God is all-powerful and evil the word must be perfectly evil and but the initial assumption is just fallacious there's no reason to believe it those are powerful so God could be evil just with just a bit shit other there's plenty of evidence that whatever gods Aminah that shit of it which is the business just makes a the entropy is mysticism word Easter be things are getting Messier and Messier all the time so whatever thought the mms is a bit shut up and I think there's plenty more evidence to say he does it shouldn't be an evil cometh envy twenty second five makes me make what a parable that might be resonant with students you're comparing a fellow-creature doing oppression to his other creatures worth like him and the one who sustains Humanity in the first place it's like a student complaining that the parents their parents cut off their money supply to them that supports them throughout their there's a university years but thus the parents are in fact stolen the from that's that student even though it's a parent money the parents don't have to give it to the student the parent I'm moving for rights to cut off that money supply to their students I probably tell everyone here against me now that bearable but back is in essence you guys not if you're not preparing the mic for Mike and you forget that we depend on God and constant sustenance to actually continue to exist thank you cuz I don't have a question for the proposition reg if I believe in God yeah what yeah and I mean my darling the question is well posed given that I don't believe in God but I think the God that I was talking about in my speech was the guards that most of us grew up with who is not human he's the God of the Bible and the Koran and I think they're the same they're the same thing that that again is so that's the idea that people have consciousness to have people there that do it they want oh yeah oh yeah yeah I'll get that so that means first off on the racism thing like Blaine Brando played rats played Jeremy like Doug those are those people who did that aren't the natural disasters thing Ron a sphere going around the Sun so there's just more heat there so more things happen essentially what yeah because that's how that's how the universe like came out that's just like the world that we were given it didn't it like the fact that it isn't perfect is again a matter of perspective like it could be also powerful it's it's being like historically kind of very excited because India for thousand years hasn't always been in famine it was that she has some amazing flowering of civilization when you saw famines in Western Europe in fact so many plagues and famines and problems in Western Europe you would have called a Western Europe was the third world you know couple centuries ago and a why does God hate Western Europe I just go to hate white people would have something like this right so but it would be wrong to us that because everywhere around in the world you've seen the Empire girl and Paul and people become successful and then pour into ruin it's a cyclical nature and studying that the cycle of civilizations is in fact maybe something that would help us understand more about what God is trying trying to show us by lesson of the signal nature [Applause] very quickly and the son of Moses explicitly talked about having a chosen people that sounds a little bit racist – appear anything but racist and I have too confident defense of my colleague when he says that and the God of Islam and Christianity is the same God well actually Islam Christianity in Judaism Oh God I think you could prove that there's a god who's maybe doing his best and failure well I think I think if you if you're talking about a gardener for whom the way it's doing his best makes sense then yeah it isn't the God we spend most of our time talking about it like it's you know something more like Superman who can't save everyone but like you know I think the gods that most of people in this room are thinking of when they were thinking when they came here was the God who has the power to save everyone and there's no house no such thing as doing his best because he can do anything yes and I mean I think I would readily accept that there are some good things in the world but the end I would suggest that argument is similar to the burglar who turns up in court and says put your honor what about all the hoses it didn't Fargo hey so I have four kids if I murder two of them I'll explain to my wife but there's just as many alive as there are there [Applause] okay so if I get what you're saying correctly okay if you forget what you're saying correctly and you're saying that he does some evil things he does some good things that doesn't excuse the evil things even if there's like a bit of both of them you know it's still if he's all-powerful she'd be able to do only good things well sorry I kind of continued that to say well if he was all-powerful surely then does not include the ability to actually think what's mean at Marquee who appears to be yeah well we're talking about gorgeous unnecessarily he would be all-powerful I'm gonna accept that idea in the first place we could talk about his existence separately but if we do talk about a god we've it's generally accepted assumption that he is all-powerful and it is all-powerful then surely he can also bring actually goodness I like he can redeem suffering which in itself is about he makes something better out of it than there was before hand why would a child have to suffer exactly well so yeah well anyone could make up a little right here so if it was ever possible for suing that we can see a truly that is so evil it was if it was possible at all for that to end up being brought to us good that that be made into a good thing or a bad thing that would have to be gonna do it but how could anyone less than God anyone less than of all-powerful being bring something good and something so terrible so we're talking about God in the first place we necessarily say they has the ability to do I'm talking laughter it's not all like it'll shorten no people to people who are suffering are nearest to God because God suffered so that's what we believe anyway so we have to include in your assumption as well the poster like our happy forever in heaven as well so it kind of doesn't really your assumptions also include some further your analogy of a burglar going to course then you wanna look all the houses I didn't burgle actually incorrect D has got on and on do you think that the real point would be actually the house that burgled is my own and look at all the houses I've built that would be the actual product [Applause] all of those in favor of emotions this has police thought of evil [Applause] you

14 thoughts on “DEBATE: IS GOD EVIL? Literary & Historical Society, University College Dublin

  1. Some people say : " There is no evidence for God " I tried my best but i could not find him…

    Of course not if Science is the yard stick your're using, then you will not find evidence for God ,because science does not account for the "SUPERNATURAL" or METAPHYSICAL because of the naturalistic presuppositions of the philosophical premises of science.


  2. Abdullah was very well received. Masha'Allah.

  3. I liked the Christian Guy. He had some really good points.

    EDIT: The guy before the Chaplain.

  4. It is mankind who is evil, not God. Everyone wants to point the finger when tragedy happens yet no one wants to take responsibility. While people in Africa are getting poorer and starving to death, the westerner is getting more wasteful and dying of obesity. Should not those who have give to those who have nothing? Should not the westerners be held to account for wastefulness while their fellow man is starving? God is not evil. Mankind is failing his brother in humanity and that is the truth.

  5. Abdullah, my brother may Allah bless and protect you. You always have a superior understanding of the subject debated.

  6. so if God is evil and he exists that means atheists are in big trouble, you better look for a way you will incentify him

  7. Abdullah, the fact that you have to defend God on his behalf speaks volumes.

  8. If you agree with bro Abdullah or not, you have to admit he is always the most superior and on point speaker. Always taking the subject head on and never relying on emotional or anecdotal arguments.

  9. God, If exists at all, is either non caring or evil.

  10. The house I burglar are my own, and look at all the houses I've built = God is a psychopath building and destroying then speaking to himself.

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