HANDBOOK OF CHRISTIAN APOLOGETICS ON PROBLEM OF EVIL
 
The sixth chapter of the Handbook of Christian Apologetics proposes a solution to the problem of evil.

The best answer it can come up with for why a good God permits horrendous suffering and evil to happen is that we are assuming we are meant to be happy.  Atheists are thought to make that mistake when they say there is too much of it so there is no loving God.  Atheists could be deciding we should be happy even if God does not think so.  Or they could be saying God would make us happy and as this is not happening there is no God.

The declaration is then made in this Catholic book is that happiness is not feeling happy! It says you can be happy and feel nothing and that happiness is under your control and is permanent. This tells us we have a duty to be detached from feelings like love and hatred for suffering. That is just another trick to make us able and ready and willing to do whatever the Christian leaders want. It is abnormal to be happy when you feel nothing because you know it is better to be have a wonderful feeling of happiness. If you are happy without the feeling there is something wrong with you. Being happy implies having the best and enjoying it for happiness implies being true to your dignity. The book agrees with the latter part for it says that no matter how happy Nero felt when he set fire to Rome he was not happy. Page 141 admits that if we are to be happy in the true sense we have to lose the shallow happiness meaning the happiness we feel. This is an attack on falling in love and entertainment and so on. It says you can feel healthy without being healthy and so you can feel happy without being happy. But this analogy is deceptive. Happiness is in the mind and health is physical and so the analogy fails for you can know if you are happy but not if you are really healthy. You cannot be happy in any shape or form or in the way the book wants you to be happy without believing and seeing and understanding that you are a good person. But with the health thing you don’t know you are unhealthy or at least the way you feel convinces you that you are healthy no matter what the doctors say. No proof at all is given that happiness is not a feeling which is what they are trying to prove which shows they support the traditional Heaven of joyless joy and happiness-free happiness which has nothing to offer except being better than Hell. We all feel something all the time so happiness has to be a feeling. In reality, this philosophy tells us that Christianity does not want to give this arid artificial happiness to people at all just as much as it does not want to give the warm happiness to them for Christianity says we are always sinning in some way so how could you think of yourself as a good person to experience that “happiness” then?

Do we really want happiness without feeling happy? Of course not. We see the greater evil as being “happy” without feeling happy rather than being “unhappy” as Christians call it and having happy feelings and this is logical and right. Let Christianity preach the first kind of happiness if it wants for nobody will follow it then. We see then that the book only teaches that happiness is detachment from all feelings of well-being to convince us that suffering is not a bad thing for we are not meant to be happy as in feeling happy anyway. I wish the Church would be more openly anti-happiness so that it will be seen for the danger it really is but it gets its victims through public relations and deception for they think the Church really wants them to have happy feelings.

If you are unhappy when you are doing something sinful or anti-God and anti-Heaven no matter how happy you feel then it follows that you cannot be happy unless you know there is a life after death in which you will have eternal happiness as understood by the book. So the less sure you are the less happy you are. God wants faith so this means that you will not know for sure and he does not want you to be happy at all. You cannot be happy in any form if you cannot see that happiness for sure and see it as something permanent and if you are told not to trust yourself that you will stay true to God and die in his friendship. You get the picture from considering that when you are blissfully happy the realisation that it will not last pains you and the greater the happiness the worse the pain will be. Buddha gave us this insight and it is right. Anybody that is happy in the sense meant by the book must have something wrong with them or be deceiving themselves. They might be mad or possessed.

So if we cannot truly be happy on earth in that sense then we cannot make others happy and there is no love in the world only emotional artificial love. God could not have made us and gave us free will just for that if the book is right.

One thing is for sure, if you are a believer in an all good God you have to agree that happiness is not a feeling because if it is then goodness is pleasure and God should have made us perfectly happy from the moment we were conceived. He did not so he does not exist. The redefinition of happiness is really the old idea that love is painful and agonising selfless sacrifice under different terminology for it is renouncing for when you turn away from emotional happiness to have sterile happiness that must cause pain for you would rather have the first. Better one minute of elation than two or more minutes of sterile happiness.

Nobody can really think that God alone deserves supreme love if he is not obliged to give us quality of life for all eternity.  The debate is framed around atheists saying suffering refutes God but the reality is that believers surely are some way going towards the same view deep inside.