Why is there so Much Suffering?
A God and a Devil
- There is a God, but also a Devil that works against God to destroy the world. It is the Devil that causes this suffering not God.
This is a crap explanation, because if God is all powerful, then why doesn't God kill the Devil today and end our suffering. This means that either God is not powerful at all (thus cannot be called God) or more logically, there is not a Devil. If there is a Devil, then the Devil must work for God, thus, the Devil cannot really be called evil but is instead trying to do his/her/it's/their duty. Many Christians would say that the Devil is a very real human being, but then the question I would pose that if the Devil is a human being who walks on Earth, then why is it that bombs can explode in two places at once, why is it that evil can happen at two places at once. Christians may further argue that in fact the Devil has associates, but then it still wouldn't solve the contradiction on an All powerful creator who cannot seemingly control a mere Devil.
Really there is no Devil. The concept of a Devil was created by high priests and holy men who would commit various evil acts such as murder and so needed someone or something else to blame. The devil is just a character that we have created to place the blame of evil off ourselves and onto an imaginary being. The real Devil is of our own minds. As humans, our minds are in constant battle with themselves to try and get control. Also, if the Devil punishes people for their wrong doings in Hell then surely the Devil must be good. If the Devil was truly evil then he would make the people in Hell his/her friends because they would have something in common (being evil of course). Again, this is a grave absurdity of the whole "Devil" affair. If you still disagree with me then go back to your Holy Books and read a bit more deeply. You shall come to realise that the real Devil is of our own minds. The real hell is in our minds. We are in constant conflict with our own minds to try and get control, but currently, our desires are in control of us. What a shame.
A Not so Powerful God
- God is not so powerful now but used to be an all-powerful being.
This makes as much sense as a Dog with hair extensions. This theory can be solved by asking "Can God create a mountain that he cannot move?". If not then this means God is not so powerful therefore the God in question is not the God. If so then this means God has created something more powerful than God, therefore, God cannot be God. If you don't understand this, don't worry, let it mull over for a few weeks and one day you may get it (much like me, I took half a year to understand it). Generally, the point being that if a God is not so powerful, then that God cannot be the God. This explanation for suffering is therefore illogical.
An All Powerful, All Loving God
- God is both all powerful and all loving, but there is also evil in the world.
This seems to be back to square one and you may be wondering how on Mother Earth this is pulled off. I have not seen this concept fully explained in any other religion more clearly than it has been done in Sikhism. It is written that as humans, because our desires are in control of us, we have become attached to the world and materialism. In order for us to become aware of our goal in life again, there is suffering. Suffering is the mechanism which God has created to remind us of the meaning of life. This is explained better as an analogy:
There is a blacksmith who purifies iron. First he takes the iron, puts it on the anvil and begins to beat it with his hammer. The iron screams and weeps due to the suffering it has endured. But the result is iron without the impurities.
The suffering we face is for our best. In our own minds, we see death as a bad thing because it is seen as the end of life, but without death how would we understand life? We have a misconception about death as being bad, but what if for one moment we assume death is good? This would mean death is the beginning of something even more wonderful. After all, death may ironically be seen to be the ender of pain and suffering.
Similarly, without suffering how would we understand pleasure? The system is a perfect one, which requires no intervention by God. Our entire creation seems to have a beautiful ability to regulate and repair itself whilst continually changing and expanding and unfolding in beautiful ways which we may never understand. Much like an ant cannot understand how vast our world is, similarly, we are even smaller than ants in comparison to the universe and all its wonder.
In my mind, the answer to suffering is a simple one, and related to the meaning of life...it is to make us realise where we stand in life and what our lives mean to us. It allows us to snap out of our materialistic world we have indulged in and see reality for what it is. It opens our eyes. And I hope I've opened yours too.