Pope Benedict XVI continues to look for ways to deflect the world’s attention from the fact that the Church he rules is a remorseless, Mafia–like cabal of criminals and criminal-enablers. CBS News reports that he used a question from a Japanese child who survived the recent earthquake there as a launching-point for his own idiotic attempt at theodicy (WebCite cached article):
In an unprecedented move, Pope Benedict XVI held a televised question-and-answer session to mark Good Friday, fielding queries from as far away as Japan, Iraq and the Ivory Coast on topics as wide-ranging as death, violence, intimidation and suffering. …
The first question came from Elena, a 7-year-old Japanese girl who told the pope that many children her age were killed in the March 11 disaster and asked why children have to be so sad.
“I also have the same questions: Why is it this way? Why do you have to suffer so much while others live in ease?” Benedict said. “And we do not have the answers but we know that Jesus suffered as you do, an innocent.”
Trying for words of comfort, the pope told her that “even if we are still sad, God is by your side.”
He said Elena should tell herself: “One day, I will understand that this suffering was not empty, it wasn’t in vain, but behind it was a good plan, a plan of love.”
There are so many points of illogic in the Pope’s answer, I hardly know how to begin addressing them. Since I can’t possibly cover them all, I’ll handle the three main ones:
That one innocent (i.e. Jesus) suffered, does not mean everyone else’s suffering is good. This is a form of “two wrongs make a right” thinking and is fallacious.
What does it matter that God is at anyone’s side, while s/he suffers? I mean, seriously … what fucking good does that accomplish?
The Pope concedes “we do not have the answers,” yet — in total contradiction of this admission — concludes nonetheless that there is some great cosmic “plan of love.”
The idea that “God has a plan” is commonly stated by many theists. But curiously, not one of them dares divulge the content of this “plan”! Sorry, but unless you know what the “plan” is and can describe it to me, you can’t say there is one. No, I’m not just going to take your word for it. A plan you’ve never seen and cannot explain, is inseparable from one that doesn’t exist at all.
The sad truth about this theodicy by the Pope — and about all other theodicies proposed by any other believer in the Abrahamic God over the last c. 2,500 years — is that they all fail the test of logic. Every single last one of them.
Photo credit: M.Mazur / www.thepapalvisit.org.uk via Flickr.Tags: abrahamic god, benedict xvi, catholic church, christian, Christianity, christians, earthquake, good friday, holy see, japan, japan ear, pope benedict, pope benedict xvi, problem of evil, roman catholic, roman catholic church, theodicies, theodicy, vatican, vatican city