Friday, August 8, 2014

Os Guinness on Evil

Contemporary  language to describe ethics and evil  has grown uncertain and confused.  In the public square, those who speak unabashedly of evil are dismissed as simplistic, old–fashioned, and out of tune with the realities of modern life.  However Os Guinness contends that we must come to terms with our beliefs regarding evil and ultimately join the fight against it.  But to do so, we ought to understand three underlying approaches to evil in this world.

Guinness' talk for the Veritas Forum delineates the Eastern Approach which Hinduism and Buddhism is based, a Secularist world-view on evil and a Biblical approach as embodied in Judaism and Christianity. 

Guinness avuncular lecture elucidated a couple of things which are not ordinarily appreciated.  Many know that Buddists believe in reincarnation.  But what they aspire for is Nirvana, which seems a lot less appealing  per Os Gunniness' translation as "great deathless lake of extinction." 

 One thinks less of Nirvana's grungy collection of hit music and more about Kurt Cobain's suicide. Focusing on the metaphysical side,  this "lake of extinction" paradigm  tracks Buddhism's answer to Dukkah "suffering" to have freedom from individuality.

To face unspeakable evil from a biblical perspective, one must grapple with the "trilemma":
1.  Is evil very evil?
2.  Is God all good?
3.  Is God omnipotent?

No comments:

Post a Comment