Beemer (dr_tectonic) wrote,

[1] + Running /usr/bin/universe

Religion has come up in a number of places recently, and I wanted to share an idea that I find interesting. I got it from a science fiction novel, so I won't pretend that it's deeply profound or anything, but on the other hand, I think that's as venerable a heritage as most religious/philosophical ideas. (The book is The Genocidal Healer, one of the Sector General novels by James White, and is about the new chaplain of an interstellar hospital.) It's kind of neat that the idea isn't presented as a truth in the world of the novel; it's just another religious idea that some people hold.

The idea is an answer to the Question of Evil: i.e., why does stuff suck? If whoever created the universe is benevolent, why do bad things happen? Why is Creation imperfect?

And the answer is: because it's not finished yet. Creation is still happening; evolution, civilization, scientific progress, all these things are part of God's ongoing creation of the universe.

I like this idea because not only does it answer a tough problem, it also tells you what to do about it. If the universe isn't finished, then as self-aware parts of the universe, clearly our job is to help finish it. The point of existence is to make things better than they were.

Do I actually believe in this idea? Sometimes. Ask me later, when we're done...

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