The earthquake and the ensuing tsunami in Japan are truly tragic and need worldwide attention. In the wake of yet another catastrophe people all over the world either pray to God for the victims and survivors of the earth-shattering calamity or point to the catastrophe as yet another reason why there cannot be a God. Human suffering, they point out, is proof enough that a loving God who would allow such suffering can not possibly exist.
But maybe there is another way to see this. Let us consider what earthquakes are, for instance. Earthquakes result in the pressure build-up of tectonic plates pressing on one another. When the mounting pressure becomes too much, the pressing plates at the fault line cause earthquake activity. But if there is a God why would He organize our planet in this manner to allow such natural disasters?
What we see when we probe into this question is that within the laws of physics currently operating in our universe it just so happens that tectonic activity is critically necessary in order to support life on a planet. The movement of the tectonic plates allows for recycling of nutrients vital for sustaining life. Not only this, but water also plays an interesting role in this system as well. Water lubricates faults in order to minimize the size of earthquakes. But here’s the kicker; too much water is not good either. We need to have just the right amount. Research has allowed us to see that too much water actually lubricates the faults too much resulting in more numerous, albeit somewhat smaller earthquakes. (more…)