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Comment published on 15 March 2022, see Religions 2022, 13(3), 251.
Article

Animal Suffering, God and Lessons from the Book of Job

Katholisch-Theologische Fakultät, Universität Augsburg, 86159 Augsburg, Germany
Academic Editors: Piotr Roszak and Sasa Horvat
Religions 2021, 12(12), 1047; https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12121047
Received: 14 September 2021 / Revised: 11 November 2021 / Accepted: 16 November 2021 / Published: 25 November 2021
Nature shows itself to us in ambivalent ways. Breathtaking beauty and cruelty lie close together. A Darwinian image of nature seems to imply that nature is a mere place of violence, cruelty and mercilessness. In this article, I first explore the question of whether such an interpretation of nature is not one-sided by being phrased in overly moral terms. Then, I outline how the problem of animal suffering relates to a specific understanding of God as moral agent. Finally, in the main part of the argumentation, I pursue the question to what extent the problem of animal (and human) suffering does not arise for a concept of God couched in less personalistic terms. If God’s perspective towards creation is rather de-anthropocentric, then moral concerns might be of less importance as we generally assume. Such an understanding of the divine is by no means alien to the biblical-theistic tradition. I argue that it finds strong echoes in the divine speeches in the Book of Job: They aim at teaching us to accept both the beauty and the tragic of existence in a creation that seen in its entirety is rather a-moral. Finally, I address the question what such a concept of God could mean for our existence. View Full-Text
Keywords: (dis)values in nature; animal theodicy; God in the Book of Job; non-anthropocentric view of God; holistic understanding of creation (dis)values in nature; animal theodicy; God in the Book of Job; non-anthropocentric view of God; holistic understanding of creation
MDPI and ACS Style

Gasser, G. Animal Suffering, God and Lessons from the Book of Job. Religions 2021, 12, 1047. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12121047

AMA Style

Gasser G. Animal Suffering, God and Lessons from the Book of Job. Religions. 2021; 12(12):1047. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12121047

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gasser, Georg. 2021. "Animal Suffering, God and Lessons from the Book of Job" Religions 12, no. 12: 1047. https://doi.org/10.3390/rel12121047

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