mannikin wrote:Depends what you mean by God, if you're going by the Abrahamic tradition, then it seems pretty fucking conditional to me...
Well, let's not be too rash here. The Abrahamic God certainly seems pretty sadistic, but if we're comparing this to a God that seems merciful and compassionate, one has to wonder if there'd be any need for punishment or forgiveness at all. If such a God's love is defined an unconditional, does that mean it's not even conditional on if we sin? On if there is a need for punishment/forgiveness?
It seems obvious that a parent will sometimes need to impose consequence on a child for their actions, but this is not the same as withholding love from them on the condition that they continue to misbehave. Could the cruelty we see in the Abrahamic God simply be God imposing certain consequences for the misbehavior of man though He still loves us unconditionally. (Still seems pretty harsh though, I'll admit).
mannikin wrote:The better question is..why did God create all of this, the sinful people, hell etc when he knew what was going to happen anyways prior to creation. You can say well they had freewill, but he STILL knew what was going to happen despite the freewill.
That's an excellent, though a bit worn out, question. The only ways I've ever come up with to answering it are twofold:
1) Something among the big "omni" words has got to yeild: either God is not omniscient (so he didn't
know), not omnipotent (so he may not have been able to help it), or not omnibenevolent (he really is just a sadistic prick).
2) God's "love" is not the simple animalistic love that only a hedonist can understand. God doesn't show his love by just making everybody happy (getting rid of all disease, war, prejudice, starvation, etc.). Instead, it is a higher form of love that is expressed in something more sophisticated or refined. For example, to give someone the experience of a lifetime, or to entertain someone with a profound tragedy. <-- Both of these would be rather dull, at best, and defeat the purpose, at worst, if they didn't involve some pain, some adversity. Or to allow someone their freedom of choice, even if that means making bad choices. <-- This may not seem like love if one could know how horrible the choices will be and how much pain and suffering they will cause, but this is part and parcel of being a higher form of love from hedonistic love.
Then again, if a hedonist's paradise is good enough for God's love, then the gains may outweigh the costs after all--it depends on if we all get to go to Heaven in the end anyway--if Heaven really is eternal, then strictly logically speaking, it outweighs pretty much any torment you could put someone through. This is contingent, of course, on the answer to Why God is Inherently Wrong
in that many of the questions asked in that thread received potential answers along the lines of: Hell is not eternal. If Hell is
eternal, and some souls go there, we may still be able to argue a case for the hedonist's paradise (that is, if more people end up going to Heaven), but it would be a dampened case.
Amorphos wrote:I assume... that a love for a third party which has no conditions, nor added elements which ensue with physicality, that that love would give you the pure thing?
Which reminds me, I wonder what counts as "unconditional". I like to think my love for my children is unconditional. Although one can entertain certain scenarios that put this to the test: what if I find out one day that my daughter really isn't mine, that maybe my ex. cheated on me, got pregnant, and simply let me believe the baby was mine. If I found this out about my daughter, would I love her any less? I hate to say it, but knowing this *might* effect my love for her. I doubt it would mean I would stop loving her, but maybe a little less? Or maybe not (thank God, I've never been in that situation, so I wouldn't know).
Or maybe this: I love you for who you are. <-- Is that unconditional love? What if the person changes, like most of us do over time? Doesn't love require something to
love? Some condition, some attribute. Or can we love something/someone for absolutely no reason (just because they're there)? And if so, is it possible for that thing/person to change in such a way that they cease to be that thing/person, as though they might as well have ceased to exist, in which case the original thing you loved isn't there to be loved anymore? <-- This is starting to become the ship of Theseus problem.
<-- But that may just answer the question: God's love is so unconditional that it applies to anything that exists period--just because
it exists (which *might* include suffering).