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I have posted a number of times on the Genesis account of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. One commenter on one of the posts reminded me of my favourite meme:

god free will

And this is nowhere more apparent than with the eating the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. So often you hear the free will theodicy as defending why there is so much suffering on earth, and that free will is such an important idea and property of humanity that it is more than worth the collateral of pain and damage that it brings about.

The very first time that Adam and Eve are able to use their free will, they do so, and are massively punished for doing so. What a gift! And humanity bears the burden of that punishment for evermore, it seems. At least, according to many Christians.

We might call this entrapment – here’s a really cool fruit tree and I’m going to whack it in the middle of the garden; but if you eat from it, I’ll kill you.

Thanks, God. Personally, as I have said before, put the darned thing in space, and spare humanity the punishment, thanks. Great foresight…

It just seems bizarre that free will is apparently this most wonderful of gifts, but right from the very start, it screws humanity up for endless generations.

A TIPPLING PHILOSOPHER Jonathan MS Pearce is a philosopher, author, columnist, and public speaker with an interest in writing about almost anything, from skepticism to science, politics, and morality,...

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