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  1. Leslie Allan, The Soul-Making Theodicy: A Response to Dore.
    The soul-making theodicy seeks to explain how belief in the existence of God is compatible with the evil, pain and suffering we experience in our world. It purports to meet the problem of evil posed by non-theists by articulating a divine plan in which the occurrence of evil is necessary for enabling the greater good of character building of free moral agents. Many philosophers of religion have levelled strong objections against this theodicy. In this essay, Leslie Allan considers the effectiveness (...)
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  2. Peg Birmingham (2003). Holes of Oblivion: The Banality of Radical Evil. Hypatia 18 (1):80-103.
  3. Timothy Chappell (2001). Anthropocentrism and the Problem of Natural Evil: A Note. Ratio 14 (1):84–85.
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  4. Peter Coghlan & Nick Trakakis (2006). Confronting the Horror of Natural Evil: An Exchange Between Peter Coghlan and Nick Trakakis. Sophia 45 (2):5-26.
    In this exchange, Peter Coghlan and Nick Trakakis discuss the problem of natural evil in the light of the recent Asian tsunami disaster. The exchange begins with an extract from a newspaper article written by Coghlan on the tsunami, followed by three rounds of replies and counter-replies, and ending with some final comments from Trakakis. While critical of any attempt to show that human life is good overall despite its natural evils, Coghlan argues that instances of natural evil, even horrific (...)
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  5. Michael J. Coughlan (1986). The Free Will Defence and Natural Evil. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 20 (2/3):93 - 108.
  6. Bryan Frances (2013). Gratuitous Suffering and the Problem of Evil: A Comprehensive Introduction. Routledge.
    A book on the problem of evil, focusing on alleged gratuitous suffering.
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  7. Luke Gelinas (2009). The Problem of Natural Evil II: Hybrid Replies. Philosophy Compass 4 (3):560-574.
    I consider two views that combine different elements of general theistic replies to natural evil, those of Peter van Inwagen and William Hasker. I end with a Hasker-style defense – one that, unlike Hasker's, denies the existence of pointless natural evils – and some brief observations on the direction of future debate.
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  8. Luke Gelinas (2009). The Problem of Natural Evil I: General Theistic Replies. Philosophy Compass 4 (3):533-559.
    I examine different strategies involved in stating anti-theistic arguments from natural evil, and consider some theistic replies. There are, traditionally, two main types of arguments from natural evil: those that purport to deduce a contradiction between the existence of natural evil and the existence of God, and those that claim that the existence of certain types or quantities of natural evil significantly lowers the probability that theism is true. After considering peripheral replies, I state four prominent theistic rebutting strategies: skeptical (...)
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  9. William Hasker (1997). O'Connor on Gratuitous Natural Evil. Faith and Philosophy 14 (3):388-394.
    David O’Connor has criticized my arguments for the conclusion that God’s existence is compatible with genuinely gratuitous natural evil. In this reply, I show that his own arguments fail to achieve their objective; in addition, I point out several respects in which he has misstated my position.
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  10. Charles T. Hughes (1992). Theism, Natural Evil, and Superior Possible Worlds. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 31 (1):45 - 61.
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  11. Ian James Kidd (2016). Transformative Suffering and The Cultivation of Virtue. Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Psychology 22 (4):291-294.
    The idea that certain experiences of suffering can be positively transformative has a central role in the practical and pastoral aspects of Christian theology. It is easy to identify different historical and doctrinal reasons why physical, mental, and spiritual suffering enjoy a central role in that tradition, but less easy to articulate and justify the provocative claim that suffering can be positively transformative. Indeed, some critics protest that the very idea is deeply offensive, on moral, theological, and psychological grounds, and (...)
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  12. Jeremy Koons (2010). Natural Evil as a Test of Faith in the Abrahamic Traditions. Sophia 49 (1):15-28.
    This paper critically examines what I call the ‘testing theodicy,’ the widely held idea that natural evil exists in order to test our faith in God. This theodicy appears numerous times in the scriptures of all three Abrahamic faiths. After examining some of these scriptural passages, we will argue that in light of these texts, the notion of faith is best understood as some type of commitment such as trust, loyalty or piety, rather than as merely a belief in God’s (...)
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  13. T. J. Mawson (2004). The Possibility of a Free-Will Defence for the Problem of Natural Evil. Religious Studies 40 (1):23-42.
    In this paper, I consider various arguments to the effect that natural evils are necessary for there to be created agents with free will of the sort that the traditional free-will defence for the problem of moral evil suggests we enjoy – arguments based on the idea that evil-doing requires the doer to use natural means in their agency. I conclude that, despite prima facie plausibility, these arguments do not, in fact, work. I provide my own argument for there being (...)
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  14. John McAteer (2015). Silencing Theodicy with Enthusiasm: Aesthetic Experience as a Response to the Problem of Evil in Shaftesbury, Annie Dillard, and the Book of Job. Heythrop Journal 57 (4):n/a-n/a.
    The problem of evil is not only a logical problem about God's goodness but also an existential problem about the sense of God's presence, which the Biblical book of Job conceives as a problem of aesthetic experience. Thus, just as theism can be grounded in religious experience, atheism can be grounded in experience of evil. This phenomenon is illustrated by two contrasting literary descriptions of aesthetic experience by Jean-Paul Sartre and Annie Dillard. I illuminate both of these literary texts with (...)
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  15. Moti Mizrahi (2014). The Problem of Natural Inequality: A New Problem of Evil. Philosophia 42 (1):127-136.
    In this paper, I argue that there is a kind of evil, namely, the unequal distribution of natural endowments, or natural inequality, which presents theists with a new evidential problem of evil. The problem of natural inequality is a new evidential problem of evil not only because, to the best of my knowledge, it has not yet been discussed in the literature, but also because available theodicies, such the free will defense and the soul-making defense, are not adequate responses in (...)
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  16. Paul K. Moser (1984). Natural Evil and the Free Will Defense. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 15 (1/2):49 - 56.
  17. Frank J. Murphy (2005). Unknowable Worlds: Solving the Problem of Natural Evil. Religious Studies 41 (3):343-346.
    This paper draws attention to the way free choice participates in the occurrence of what is usually called natural evil. While earthquakes are natural phenomena, they injure only those who have chosen to live in places where they occur. But if God could not foresee these choices, then God could not foresee much about the amount and distribution of natural evil. Combining a libertarian notion of freedom with a denial of middle knowledge allows God to be much less implicated in (...)
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  18. David O'Connor (1991). Swinburne on Natural Evil From Natural Processes. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 30 (2):77 - 87.
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  19. Richard Swinburne (1978). Natural Evil. American Philosophical Quarterly 15 (4):295 - 301.
    THE FREEWILL DEFENCE IS DESIGNED TO SHOW THAT THE EXISTENCE OF MORAL EVIL (I.E., EVIL PRODUCED BY MEN) IS COMPATIBLE WITH THE EXISTENCE OF GOD. TO DO THIS IT MUST CLAIM THAT IT IS GOOD THAT MEN HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO BRING ABOUT EITHER GOOD OR EVIL. TO HAVE THIS OPPORTUNITY, THEY MUST KNOW HOW TO BRING ABOUT EVIL. GOD COULD TELL THEM, BUT THAT WOULD MAKE HIS PRESENCE SO MANIFEST AS TO IMPAIR THEIR FREEDOM. THE ONLY OTHER WAY IN (...)
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  20. Nick Trakakis (2006). Confronting the Horror of Natural Evil: An Exchange Between Peter Coghlan and Nick Trakakis. [REVIEW] Sophia 45 (2):5-26.
    In this exchange, Peter Coghlan and Nick Trakakis discuss the problem of natural evil in the light of the recent Asian tsunami disaster. The exchange begins with an extract from a newspaper article written by Coghlan on the tsunami, followed by three rounds of replies and counter-replies, and ending with some final comments from Trakakis. While critical of any attempt to show that human life is good overall despite its natural evils, Coghlan argues that instances of natural evil, even horrific (...)
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  21. Nick Trakakis (2005). Is Theism Capable of Accounting for Any Natural Evil at All? International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 57 (1):35 - 66.
    Received wisdom has it that a plausible explanation or theodicy for Gods permission of at least some instances of natural evil is not beyond the reach of the theist. In this paper I challenge this assumption, arguing instead that theism fails to account for any instance, kind, quantity, or distribution of natural evil found in the world. My case will be structured around a specific but not idiosyncratic conception of natural evil as well as an examination of three prominent theodicies (...)
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