A Philosophical Reading of the Book of Job

I am a philosopher who believes that Western philosophy begins not with Plato, but elsewhere, and earlier, with the Book of Job. That is because I believe that the problem of evil is the central point where philosophy begins, and threatens to stop.

The experience of inexplicable suffering and basest injustice forces us to ask whether our lives have meaning, or whether human existence may be deeply incomprehensible. And if that is the case, then the urge to philosophy can seem to be a simple mistake.

Put more optimistically: if the task of philosophy is to show how the world is, or can be made rational, then it must address the presence of evil in the world.

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