Monday, February 28, 2011

Omnipotence and Omniscience

In my previous post, I talked about Omnipotence, Omniscience, and Omnibenevolence.  These are three characteristics given to God.  Having all three would be pretty wonderful, but what if somebody only had two of them?

What is somebody is all-powerful and all-knowing, but didn't give a crap about you?  Well, it sure wouldn't be useful asking for help.  Sure, they could give you anything you wanted, and they would know exactly how it would turn out, but that doesn't mean you'll get it.

Genies or djinns are like this. They can grant any wish (almost) and know what the results will be, and unless you nailed your wording perfectly, you will get what you asked for, but not what you wanted.  Can you blame them for not caring?  They have unlimited power and knowledge, but are bound to serve stupid, greedy mortals.

Despite the annoyance or frustration of dealing with somebody like that, there is a certain sympathy for them, too.  Somebody with such capabilities would easily become bored with everything.  To be all-powerful means there is no challenge.  To be all-knowing means there is no mystery.  Existence would be nothing interesting forever.  Even if they were to start creating, manipulating, or destroying out of sheer boredom, there would still be no surprise because you know exactly how the result of that would be.

A scary creature in its power and ambivalence, but a tragic one, too.  Total writing fodder.

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