Glimpsing God’s Infinite Goodness
This chapter asks how, in a good world created by a good God, humans should understand the inherent tragedy that all flourishing comes at a price: others’ demise. Food and eating seem to pose the ultimate question of Christian theodicy: must our very sustenance require the destruction of other lives? Critiquing parallels others make between life-giving predation and the redemptive value of Christ’s crucifixion, the chapter argues that there is ultimately something unanswerable about the suffering and death that attend eating in creation. Nevertheless, the chapter maintains that God’s goodness can still be witnessed and experienced in the elements of eating that image divine grace, transcendence, creativity, care, generosity, and compassion. Furthermore, it holds that certain eating practices can cultivate people’s attentiveness and capacity to minimize and mitigate the destruction entailed in eating.
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