The Problem of Problems

Abstract

The problem of evil might better be called "the problem of problems." That there is "evil" in the world can be expressed most generally by saying that there are problems with the way things are, that at least something is not the way it should be. I shall propose that the various possible resolutions of the problem of evil correspond to varying approaches that people generally take to the problems in their lives. In this way, a connection can be made between the problem of evil as discussed by professional philosophers - a problem concerning the consistency of beliefs - and the problem as often discussed by other writers - a problem concerning the proper response to the "evil" that we find around and within us. In the course of demonstrating the parallel between the philosophical and the practical problem, I shall elaborate on the contrasting points of view of exoteric and esoteric religion, and I shall conclude with an attempt to explain why the problem remains a problem

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This paper was published in PhilPapers.

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