Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Why God wants us to suffer

Some quotes from Seneca on why a life without trials, difficulties or obstacles would be doubly unhappy:

I think you unhappy because you never have been unhappy: you have passed through your life without meeting an antagonist: no one will know your powers, not even you yourself.

You are a great man; but how am I to know it, if fortune gives you no opportunity of showing your virtue? 

Great men, I say, often rejoice at crosses of fortune just as brave soldiers do at wars. 

Misfortune is virtue’s opportunity. 

There can be no easy proof of virtue.

All of which could be given as a response to the profoundly heartfelt question that we all struggle with? Why does God allow suffering in the world? Why does God allow bad things to happen? 

It is often argued that a loving God would not allow His children to suffer. But, if Seneca is right that without hardships man can be neither happy nor virtuous, and if you believe that God desires his children to be both righteous and joyful, the question then becomes, how could a loving God not allow suffering in the world?

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