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Of God and evil
Satbir Singh Bedi | 18 Nov 2014

Epicurus, a Greek philosopher made the following statement:

"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?

Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?''
 
I believe that God exists but the term "evil" is not well defined.  It changes with peoples, places and times.  For example, eating human beings is evil for all the human being with the exception of cannibals. For cannibals, it is not an evil. Eating meat is alright for non-vegetarians but is an evil for vegetarians.  Eating beef is alright for non-Hindus but for Hindus, it is an evil.  Eating pork is an evil for Jews and Muslims but not for other people.
 
Marrying one's cousins is alright for most of the non-Hindus and even some of the Hindus but it is an evil for most of the Hindus. Untouchability was not considered an evil in pre-Independence India by the upper caste Hindus but in the present day India, it is considered as evil by most of the Hindus. 

Similarly, Sati was at one time not considered an evil but now it is considered an evil by most of the Hindus.  Inter-dining with Muslims was considered an evil by most of the Hindus in the pre-Independence India but now is not considered an evil by most most of them. Inter-caste and inter-religious marriages are considered an evil by most of the people but some of the people do not think so.
 
Muhammad-bin-Qasim was considered to be a holy warrior by the Muslims of India but the Hindus considered him an evil person. Similarly Aurangzeb was considered as a noble person by the Muslims but as an evil person by the Hindus.  So, God does not determine what is evil but it is the Human beings who determine it.