Gender, race, feminism, faith, theology, suffering
Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Race, Ethnicity and Post-Colonial Studies | Religion | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Women's Studies
This year has been the first time I have found that the suffering in the world has truly made me question my belief in an all-powerful, loving, just God. When I used to participate in theodicy discussions, I always found them incredibly annoying, because they seemed to pose the same questions over and over in search of an answer that I believed could never be found. Faith to me was not something logical or arguable; it was something I relied on, knowing and loving that it was not rational or explainable. This was until one day, after the culmination of months of glimmerings of doubt and uneasiness, I realized my prayers for a person had not done any good. Either God had heard me and chosen not to listen or act, in which case I had to believe he was uncaring, or he had heard, but was powerless to help. In either instance, I realized I could no longer comfortably pray thinking I was doing any good, because my prayers hadn't worked. And I could not believe that suffering happened for a bigger reason, because I had seen the result of an evil that had no larger reason for existing. I could not justify the pain of one person for a universal good, and I refused to "broaden my scope" to diminish an individual's pain and see it in light of the "bigger picture" or "greater good."
Department 1 Awarding Honors Status
Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Howser, K. (1993). Suffering and Faith, or A White Feminist's Education in Black Womanist Theology (Undergraduate honors thesis, University of Redlands). Retrieved from https://inspire.redlands.edu/cas_honors/653