Theodicy (2)

The issue was first raised in Tanach, where Kohelet said, “I have noticed everything in the days of my vanity (including the fact that) there can be a righteous man who perishes in his righteousness, and a wicked man who lives long in his wickedness.” (Ecclesiastes 7:15) [1],

And it’s discussed at great length and in depth in the Talmudic and the medieval literature, among the pre-modern and modern traditionalists, as well in the Zohar, the writings of the Ari, and in various places in Ramchal’s works, as we’ll see.

Note:

[1]       Also see 8:14 there and Habakkuk 1:13.

 

(c) 2014 Rabbi Yaakov Feldman
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3 responses to “Theodicy (2)

    • One of the things I demand of the many rabbinic expositions on theodicy is that they conform to the one book of Tanakh committed to the topic. A book good enough for R Yehudah or R Nechemiah to attribute it to Moshe Rabbeinu! (Bava Basra 14b, attribution[s] on 15a.)

      And that book sort of concludes: Don’t say it’s a punishment, at least not if it’s someone else’s suffering, and don’t expect an answer in any case. But turn to G-d, ’cause He’s there with you!

  1. The issue is implicit in Iyov but not stated, and that’s why I didn’t cite it.

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