The Quarterly Journal of Philosophical Investigations

نوع مقاله : مقاله علمی- پژوهشی

نویسندگان

1 استادیار گروه معارف اسلامی، دانشکده علوم انسانی، دانشگاه آزاد اسلامی، اهر، ایران

2 استادیار گروه معارف اسلامی، دانشگاه آزاد تبریز

چکیده

مسئلۀ شر بیش از آن که به وجه قرینه­ای و با اتکا به برخی شرور گزاف و ظاهراً بی­هدف یا انبوهی ناملایمات زندگی انسان، وجود خداوند و اوصاف کمالی او را به چالش کشد، در ساختاری منطقی، اعتقاد به خداوندی عالم، قادر و خیر محض را با وجود شرور در جهان هستی به طور منطقی ناسازگار می­یابد. پیداست که اعتبار این استدلال منطقی در گرو صدق یا محتمل الصدق بودن گزارۀ الحاقی آن خواهد بود و این در حالی است که انگاره نظام احسن برآمده از علم عنایی خداوند از منظر فیلسوفانی چون ملاصدرا  با عطف نظر به وجوهی چون تضاد و تزاحم در جهان مادی، جزءنگری انسان این جهانی، نسبیت شرور، دخول بالعرض شر در قضای الهی و ... بر نادرستی این گزارۀ الحاقی پای می­فشرد. مقاله پیش­رو می­کوشد تا با نگاهی دقیق به استدلال منطقی ملحدین و گزارۀ الحاقی مورد نظر آنان، دفاع ملاصدرا در برابر مسئله منطقی شر را مطرح و تاب و توان آن را بررسی کند.

تازه های تحقیق

A Study of the Logical Problem of Evil and Solidity of Mulla Sadra’s Idea of the Best Ordering of Things Against It

Tavakkol Kouhi Giglou1, Seyed Ebrahim Aghazadeh2

1Assistant Professor, Islamic Azad University, Ahar branch, E-mail:kohi.tavakkol@yahoo.com

2 Assistant Professor, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz branch, E-mail:aaghazadeh46@yahoo.com

Abstract

The problem of evil, by a logical framework, has seen the belief in a knowledgeable, almighty and purely good God logically inconsistent with the existence of evil in the universe, rather than challenging the existence of God and His attributes of perfection evidentially, relying on some absurd and apparently aimless evils or massiveness of human life difficulties. It is clear that the validity of this logical reasoning depends on the truth or probability of its annexational proposition, whereas, from the perspective of philosophers like Mulla Sadra, the idea of the best ordering of things based on the God’s providential knowledge insists on the falsehood of this annexational proposition regarding the conflict and interference in the material world, the limited point of view of human beings living in this world,  occurrence of evil by accident through Divine destiny etc. This paper aims to examine the logical reasoning of atheists and their annexational proposition, then propose Mulla Sadra’s defence against the logical problem of evil and study its strengths.

Keywords:logical problem of evil, providential knowledge, the best ordering of things, evidential problem of evil, annexational proposition.

 

  1. 1.    Introduction

Evils, in philosophical terms, are synonymous with the defects, pains and discomforts which people dislike and, at least at first glance, it seems that they do not have any positive effects on improving their earthly lives. It is clear that these notions sometimes directly or indirectly come from the will and action of the people themselves and, consequently, are optional events, which we name moral evils. Occasionally, evils are the results of natural processes around the people and are inflicted on them regardless of their will; these are called natural evils. The arguments that resort to these evils against theists challenges Divine attributes and, finally, His existence. Sometimes, these arguments seek to show logical incompatibility between theological propositions about God and the proposition for the existence of evil in the world and sometimes, through inductive reasoning, focus on the high volume of the evils or their pointless existence. But, in fact the problem of evil, by a logical framework, has seen the belief in a knowledgeable, almighty and purely good God logically inconsistent with the existence of evil in the universe, rather than challenging the existence of God and His attributes of perfection evidentially, relying on some absurd and apparently pointless evils or massiveness of human life discomforts. It is clear that the validity of this logical reasoning depends on the truth or probability of its supplemented proposition that claims the existence of a benevolent God is tantamount to creation of the best possible world in which there is no trace of evil or defect.

  1. 2.    Findings

For the philosophers like Mulla Sadra, though the idea of the best ordering of things based on God’s providential knowledge assumes the whole universe as the best probable world, it never eliminates all evils by this claim. In this approach, the whole system of existence is originated from the Divine order, which is the same as Divine providence. In fact, the system of existence is the exterior presence of creation. This system has come from Divine providential knowledge and is absolutely compatible with that; because God’s knowledge of anything equals with creation of that thing. Of course the universe of existence - as a whole - is meant by this point whose complete cause is the Almighty God.  The universe of existence as a whole is in conformity with the best ordering of things that belongs to Divine providential knowledge. There can be no contradiction and interference with this conformity; for the universe of existence is an indirect effect of God. Thus the whole universe would be created in the best possible form.

 

 

  1. 3.    Conclusion

The best ordering of things as an approach focuses exactly on the falsehood of this supplemented proposition regarding the aspects such as contradiction and interference in the material world, limited point of view of earthly human, relativity of evils, occurrence of evil by accident through Divine destiny etc. In other words, according to this approach, firstly the present universe contains some defects and discomforts inevitably, since it is material, finite and limited; if there was to be a world without defects and imperfections, that is a world without evil, then it would be unlimited and infinite. And for the universe to be infinite, it must be created immaterial, which means the material world would be immaterial at the same time and result in coincidence of two contradictories which is impossible. Secondly, motion and interference are of inevitable necessities of matter. In other words, sometimes material things, due to their inherent motion and tendency towards perfection, are subject to collision and contradiction and while the contradiction and interference keep the universe in motion, they also cause some unavoidable defects and flaws that hinder the motion.  Thirdly, these evils are evils in our limited point of view as human beings. As long as we look at the world around us from a human perspective, we will see it replete with inadequacies and hideousness, because of our limited point of view. However, if we could take a holistic standpoint such as God’s and understand the relations among the things and phenomena around us as God does, then we would find no evil and disorder in the universe. Fourthly, God’s main purpose was, in fact, creation of good in the world and the evils have occurred inevitably as requirements of achieving good, and they were not the purpose by essence. Fifthly, there are a lot of events and accidents in the world that are considered evils by an individual or group, but are considered good and desirable by others. Sixthly, according to a popular opinion in Islamic philosophy, evil is a non-existential thing, therefore Islamic philosophers do not seek an independent source for evil; since they know God as the source of absolute grace, they perceive whatever comes from Him as an existential grace; for they assume no independent essence for evil and think it does not need to be created by an creator. Consequently, God’s gracious hand is thought to be exempt from creating evil and there will be no need to consider His power or mercy constrained. Seventh, one of the most important solutions to the problem of evil relates to limited knowledge of us as humans due to our extremely narrow view of the world around us.  When human beings see the world and its creatures through their limited and finite knowledge, they cannot fathom out most of the mysteries, reasons and wisdom, but are fully aware of the fact that the great epistemic distance between them and God would never allow them to solve a lot of the mysteries. Logically this may also be true about the things we regard as evil and unnecessary.  There may be considerable reasons that we have not accessed yet. Thus, a theist’s faith will never make them obliged to present a reason for every Divine act against an atheist, for they will never grasp many of these reasons. Human knowledge is trivial compared to not only Divine knowledge but also some other creatures’ knowledge. So human limited knowledge makes them regard some events as evil and undesirable while they are completely good and necessary from a wiser viewpoint. Finally, we should never forget that God’s ethical system and His good and bad acts are unknown for us as humans.

Hoever, this paper aims to examine the logical reasoning of atheists and their supplemented proposition, then propose Mulla Sadra’s defence against the logical problem of evil and study its strengths.

References

  1. Alston, William P., History of Philosophy of Religion, in Rutledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1998, V.8.
  2. Astley, J. and others, Problems in Theology: A Selections of Key Readings, evil, London and New York, T and T Clark, 2003.
  3. Hume, David, Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, Printed in 1779.
  4. Keny, Anthony, What is Faith? New York, Oxford university press, 1992.
  5. Leibniz, G.W., Theodicy, E.M. Huggard (trans), New York, The library of liberal Arts, 1966.
  6. Mackie, J. L., The Miracle of Theism Arguments For and against the existence of God, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1982.
  7. Pojman, Louis p. Philosophy of Religion, Toronto, Mayfield publishing company, 2001.
  8. Yandel, Keith E., Philosophy of Religion: A Contemporary Introduction, London and New York, Rutledge, 2002.

کلیدواژه‌ها

عنوان مقاله [English]

Review of Logical Problem of Evil and It's Resistance in front of the best ordering of Things from Mulla Sadra's viewpoint

نویسندگان [English]

  • Tavakkol Kuhi Giglou 1
  • Seyyed Ebrahim aghazadeh 2

1 Assistant Professor, Department of Islamic Toughts,Faculty of Humanities Sciences,Islamic Azad University, Ahar, Iran

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Islamic Toughts, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran

چکیده [English]

The problem of evil, by a logical framework, has seen the belief in a knowledgeable, almighty and purely good God logically inconsistent with the existence of evil in the universe, rather than challenging the existence of God and His attributes of perfection evidentially, relying on some absurd and apparently aimless evils or massiveness of human life difficulties. It is clear that the validity of this logical reasoning depends on the truth or probability of its annexational proposition, whereas, from the perspective of philosophers like Mulla Sadra, the idea of the best ordering of things based on the God’s providential knowledge insists on the falsehood of this annexational proposition regarding the conflict and interference in the material world, the limited point of view of human beings living in this world,  occurrence of evil by accident through Divine destiny etc. This paper aims to examine the logical reasoning of atheists and their annexational proposition, then propose Mulla Sadra’s defence against the logical problem of evil and study its strengths.

کلیدواژه‌ها [English]

  • logical problem of evil
  • providential knowledge
  • the best ordering of things
  • evidential problem of evil
  • annexational proposition
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