10.04 Ramifications (pps.7-8)

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position that no previously formulated theodicy is truly fully satisfying. Needless to say, the ramifications of this situation do not end at that point. They include disheartenment, lukewarm religious commitment, and abandonment of faith.25

This is a problem for both the believer and the nonbeliever. In the mind of the latter it stands as a major obstacle to a religious commitment, while for the former it sets up an ongoing internal tension to constantly challenge and cast doubt upon the validity of his faith.26

If we were to place the impressive weight of evidence testifying to the existence of God in one scale, it would be outweighed for many by one hydraheaded fact. the existential tragedy of suffering, the burden of human misery, from which none are free. For untold sensitive men and women, the frail bark of faith has crashed on the hard rock of the persistence of evil in a world allegedly created by a good God.

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25 Cf. ibid., pp. 1-3. “Far less attention is paid to the internal crises dwelling within the matrix of monotheistic fait,hs, specifically those that are engendered by the problem of evil. These are more devastating to traditional faith than the challenges from without… Could it be that the major irritants of traditional faith lie within the corpus of monotheism itself?”
Cf. ibid., p. 3.
Cf. ibid., p. 4. “For most people, the breaking point of traditional monothe- istic belief lies not in Darwin or Einstein, but in Dachau and Hiroshima. . . . No challenge to traditional faith attacks every aspect of religious belief and conduct as thoroughly as the one fell blow from the hammer of gratuitous evil. . . Appealing to God’s mysterious ways will not assuage the disillusion- ment born of the shattered promise of the governing moral God of the Bible and liturgy. . . .The evil we have witnessed is radical. No patchwork will cover its agony.”

26 See Luban, “The Kaddish,” pp. 201, 207.

27 Gordis, A Faith for Moderns, p. 159.

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