Übel, Leid und Erlösung. Die existentielle Botschaft von Naturalismus und Theismus

Evil, suffering, and salvation. The existential message of naturalism and theism

Treść artykułu: Pobierz | Czytaj

Strona: 79 - 100

Publikacja w numerze: 38 (2018) nr 2

Autor: Krystian Kałuża


Naturalism is currently the greatest challenge for theism. As a metaphysical thesis it proclaims that everything that happens in the world can be explained by natural causes (the laws of nature) and ghosts, God, gods, or other supernatural powers or forces do not exist. Consequently, naturalism identifies with materialism and atheism. In the article a question about existential consequences of naturalist and theist worldviews was raised. From the methodological point of view it was decided to use the weaknesses of naturalism in favour of theism. The issue of evil and suffering was made a moot point. The analysis of both attitudes led to the conclusion that naturalism is bad news for humanity. If God does not exist, there is no final justice, reconciliation, redemption, or salvation. Death is the end of everything. Defeated by life, victims of evil and violence will remain defeated forever. There is no hope nor rescue for them. From such a perspective theism appears to be good news for humanity. It proclaims that though evil and suffering exist they are not anything final. All the great religious systems maintain “cosmic optimism” (J. Hick). Christianity perceives the sign of the final victory of God over death and suffering in Jesus Christ, His death, and resurrection. The argumentation in favour of theism, presented in the article in the context of evil and suffering, is definitely not the evidence of its truthfulness the same way as naturalism does not prove the non-existence of God. How non-believers see evil is already determined by their disbelief. And inversely, believers see evil in the light of faith. For Christians, the last word of God in the face of evil and suffering is Jesus Christ.