The Euthyphro Dilemma is found in Plato's works. It is a simple question about the nature of evil if a God were to exist.

The Problem[]

Is something evil because God says so, or is there an independent factor?

  • If it is the former, then evil is meaningless, since God could say charity is evil.
  • If it is the latter, God cannot determine evil, and therefore isn't Omnipotent.


Through the years, apologists, mainly Christian have attempted to refute the dilemma. The largest one is the claim:

Evil is that which contradicts the nature of God.

Of course, this only pushes the question back one recursion.

  • Is god's nature good because he says so?
  • Or is it good because of some independent factor?

Both problems still exist in the recursion, therefore this is not a sound refutation.

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