Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Yes, even a "Redemptive Hell" is the work of a Tyrant

This is another post that is the outcome of a Twitter exchange, so I'm going to have to provide some background if anyone is reading this didn't follow said exchange.

After a Twitter discussion with Randal Rauser the other day, I had exclaimed that I would prefer it if my suffering happened for "no reason" rather than for a "redemptive reason".   My justification for this view is that I'd prefer it if my life were not the plaything of some divine tyrant.

This lead to a further exchange.  My justification for calling the Christian conception of god a divine tyrant is as follows:

1.) This god allows for suffering, and Christians believe he has morally justifiable reasons to allow this suffering.
2.) These Christians also believe that a hell of some sort exists.
3.) Therefore, these Christians believe that the suffering of those in hell has a morally justifiable reason for it being permitted.

Randal, being the progressive Christian that he is, rejects the idea of a purely retributive hell and so thinks that in doing so he avoids my objection that the Christian conception of god is a divine tyrant.

I replied that any kind of a hell, even a temporary or finite one, is going to be relevant for my objection that any conception of a god that includes a hell will be one where that god is a tyrant.  Randal in turn wanted to know what my objections were against a "redemptive hell", and so we get to this post.