{NX} Reason For Suffering

© 2015 Pneumiatry

For he doth not afflict willingly nor grieve the children of men.
– Lamentations 3:33

The Bible states that God does not afflict willingly. That is, he does not afflict because he wants to. In other words, there are one or more reasons why God must allow affliction.

Now, some might say that since God is God he can overrule any reason for allowing suffering and therefore prevent all suffering. This notion of overruling of reason for suffering demonstrates a partial ignorance of the nature of God. While God is greater than all things he is not greater than himself. The Bible states:

…he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.
– 2 Timothy 2:13

Note the words “he cannot deny himself.” God is not greater than himself. Now, we didn’t need a Bible verse to know that God is not greater than himself. Common sense tells you that no thing is greater than itself. For example, a duck is not greater than itself. A duck can only do what a duck can do. And a man is not greater than himself. A man can only do what a man can do.

Now, some might say that God has no free will if he is not greater than himself. That is foolish. A man has free will yet he cannot operate beyond the limits of his knowledge, ability, and self-imposed intention. Of course, there are no limits to God’s knowledge, ability, and self-imposed intention.

We could address a host of other concerns. We will address one more.

Some might say that if God is subject to his own self-imposed intention doesn’t that mean that God’s self-imposed intention is greater than God and that therefore, since nothing is greater than God, that God cannot be God.

However, God is not a man. His being is multidimensional. One dimension of his being can have a self-imposed intention while another dimension of his being retains the ability to end that self-imposed intention. Since God is God the power dimension of God dominates the dimension of self-imposed intention. There is much, much more we can say on this subject but we believe this is enough for now at least.

Is There Pointless Suffering? (Question Answered)

Some of the language used in this article is SUBJECTIVE. SUBJECTIVE language reflects what a person believes to be reality and not reality.

Is there pointless suffering? Yes. Now, how do you reconcile that with a good God?

The belief in pointless suffering is necessary to keep people from accepting all suffering in the belief that all suffering is good because whatever God sends is good. However, if suffering is pointless, God is evil. Therefore, suffering cannot be pointless.

So, how do we reconcile these two truths; that is, suffering is pointless and suffering is not pointless? (Note that once we reconcile these two truths, we have reconciled the truths of pointless suffering and divine goodness.)

Truth exists in people. People are more complex than you know. The Bible teaches that people have a mind but it also teaches that each person has multiple, virtual minds; that is, each person, in effect and not really, has multiple, secondary minds. For example, the Bible seems to teach that you have two seats of consciousness – soul and spirit. I Thessalonians 5:23 says:

And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Now, we know that there is only one seat of consciousness. Therefore, one of these, soul or spirit, must be virtual (existing in effect and not really); that is, one of these must be virtual mind. In addition to the Bible, psychiatric science abundantly recognizes the existence of virtual minds (the dissociative continuum). There is much, much, much more proof of the existence of virtual mind but we need to be brief for now.

So, how do multiple, virtual minds explain our contradictory truths suffering is pointless and suffering is not pointless? Well, each truth exists in its own virtual mind. Now, virtual minds are transitory; that is, they have a fixed lifetime. They come and they go. And note that we are not conscious of these virtual minds but we are conscious of the thoughts within them.

Now, a truth is only true in its virtual mind. Once the virtual mind ends, the trueness of the truth within it ends. By this means, cognitve dissonance (mental conflict arising from believing contradictory truths) is avoided.

You might ask, “Since all of this is true, why do I believe the truth of a virtual mind after the virtual mind has passed?” The answer is that you don’t, you merely believe you do.

Finally, having reconciled the truths of pointless suffering and “pointful” suffering, we have reconciled the truths of pointless suffering and divine goodness.

Footnote: Now, one of the truths does not, objectively, cease to be true once its virtual mind has passed. A truth that ends when its virtual mind ends is called a mental truth. This is because it is only true in the mind. A truth that objectively persists after its virtual mind has ended is called an extended truth. This is because it is true both in the mind and in the environment (the “real world”) . In the case of pointless suffering, we are dealing with a mental truth. In the case of “pointful suffering,” we are dealing with an extended truth. “Pointful suffering” is objectively real.