The Girlfriend’s proof of the existence of God

One day, The Girlfriend mentioned to me an article she had read that claimed that couples are happier when they discuss serious issues. In that spirit, I asked her if she believed in God. Her response was that she thinks that nature tends to seek some form of equilibrium or the path of least resistence. With that in mind, the only way things could’ve gotten so screwed up is if some kind of outside agent interfered — therefore, God must exist.

I find this to be a remarkable contribution to the theodicy debate. As I explain it to my students, the problem of theodicy is to find some way of reconciling the following three statements:

  1. God is good.
  2. God is all-powerful.
  3. Evil exists.

The orthodox tradition has tended to solve the problem by seriously qualifying point #3 through its theory of evil as privation, whereas major strains in 20th century theology have rejected or significantly questioned point #2. The Girlfriend’s innovative contribution is to reject the almost universally unquestioned point #1. In addition, it provides a major advance in the attempt to prove the existence of God, insofar as it turns the most powerful argument against God’s existence (the problem of evil) into the key argument for God’s existence.

In conclusion, I recommend that all theologians and philosophers date someone outside their field, and preferably outside of academia altogether.

19 thoughts on “The Girlfriend’s proof of the existence of God

  1. It’s also quite clever in that, as my friend the maltheist says, “the ‘problem of good’ just doesn’t carry the same weight, and also, we can always just say God was letting good stuff happen so the bad stuff would fuck us up that much worse later.”

    Amen on the conclusion, though.

  2. Then there’s that whole ‘free will’ thing.

    Or that whole ‘moving in mysterious ways’ thing.

    Then there’s what they used to call ‘process theology’ thing, which accepts all three points but points out that our temporal understanding of the process of creation mistakes evil for the process of creation.

    Among others.

  3. I think this post represents a base attempt to get your oats. In which case, a) I salute you Sir, and b) clearly our theologies are never quite as strictly held as we think, not in the face of other urges.

  4. It’s kind of a reverse intelligent design as well. The most stupid and evil elements of nature are the result of an external force turning casual closure off course, rather than the most creative and incredible elements (say life or moral goodness) being the result of theological intervention.

  5. To be fair though, some have moved from premise that evil exists (ie the premise of the problem of evil) to God exists. Not trying to downplay the argument though – as far as I see, its actually unique.

  6. Normally goes something like this, I think: real objective evil in the world presumes the existence of real objective good, or else utterly relativism and you cannot make these claims toward discovering real objective evil. Real objective good presumes a law-giver or source (after some argument) hence God.

  7. I think having non-academic lovers may not be as worthwhile as assumed. Didn’t seem to have worked for Karl or Hans. (Of course, I mean worthwhile qua intellectual muse, not qua lover.)

  8. Your suggestions has worked for my partner and I. She’s an artist and I’m a philosopher. We two very neurotic persons (we’re already a crowd) are happily married but live under the assumption that the fecundity of life can take us in a variety of unforeseen directions. Every day presents itself as a creative endeavor. Since both of us are producers of sorts, of images and concepts, we can “easily” work together. It’s been worthwhile for the two of us both qua intellectuctual muses and qua lovers. [Aside: honestly, she’s gives better challenges to my ideas and my work than most philosophers do. She has a certain gift of perception that I wish I myself, as a philosopher, had.]

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