WHAT IS YOUR DEFINITION OF.........EVIL? (Is there such a thing?)

by Terry 18 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Terry

    Uncharacteristically, I am NOT going to give MY definition of Evil at the outset.

    I want your opinions and discussion of exactly what YOU think it is.

    After a number of posts I'll weigh in.

    1.Is evil an actual "thing" or a state of mind?

    2.Is evil a part of the universe or only a consequence of something having to do with mankind?

    3.What causes evil? Or, do you regard it as causeless?

    4.Can you personally eliminate evil?

    Answer with some reasonable connection of thoughts, please.

    Explain how you regard the subject of EVIL philosophically, personally, etc.


  • wanderlustguy

    I believe the only real evil is pain. Be it emotional or physical, any type of pain. So to do evil would be to cause pain to others or even oneself, and yes in that instance I believe in evil.

    But as to evil as an enitity in and of itself, no I don't believe that any more than I believe there can be a totally good entity.


  • stevenyc

    My definition of Evil..

    A shamelessly egotistical homosexual, with a penchant for funny hats.


  • Frannie Banannie
    Frannie Banannie

    1.Is evil an actual "thing" or a state of mind?

    I believe it's the opposite of good, which we wouldn't know exists without the other. Good is the result of activity born of thought, ergo evil would also be the result of activity born of thought, only the thoughts and activities resulting in evil would, of course, be the result of greed and ego, rather than empathy and logic. I don't believe egos are logical.

    2.Is evil a part of the universe or only a consequence of something having to do with mankind? Mankind's perspective or judgmental attitude about everything in their venue.

    3.What causes evil? Or, do you regard it as causeless? (See answer to #1)

    4.Can you personally eliminate evil? One can only control one's own thoughts and actions, and that only if one has the will to do so.

    Frannie (IMO)

  • daystar

    I think many people will disagree with me, but often, evil is simply whatever appears to be opposed to one's goals, one's philosophies, one's values.

    Is killing evil? Satan kills. Jehovah kills. Are they both evil?

    According to Genesis, it was the sudden ability to be able to discern good from evil that prompted Adam and Eve to be cast from the Garden. Before that, they could not tell the difference? Note that it was implied that objective "evil" must have existed, else Satan would not have existed. So, they could not have been able to determine that Satan was evil since they were not yet able to tell the difference.

    And then there were the Gnostics who actually reversed Lucifer's and Jehovah's roles. Jehovah was evil, Lucifer was the Lightbearer, and good (along with Sophia (compare Lilith)).

    Evil is simply the opposing team. A guy is living in squalor, trying to support his family. In desperation, he breaks into my house, with weapon, to steal. At that point, he is evil to me. If he threatens my life or that of one of my loved ones, he dies. But he wasn't really Evil, was he?

  • Honesty

    The Governing Body of Jehovah's Witnesses (self explanatory)

  • the_classicist
    1.Is evil an actual "thing" or a state of mind?

    State of mind, I suppose, but it can be an evil action perpetuated by a person who does not have an "evil" state of mind.

    2.Is evil a part of the universe or only a consequence of something having to do with mankind?

    I would say the universe is wholly good as a physical entity.

    3.What causes evil? Or, do you regard it as causeless?

    All things have a mover, or a primary cause. Evil, after it's primary movement, usually becomes circular, though.

    4.Can you personally eliminate evil?
    No, unless I could brainwash the entire population into robots.
  • zen nudist
    zen nudist

    good and evil are not simply opposites of each other, they are both evaluations by comparison to some ideal.

    what harms the ideal is evil, what supports the ideal is good.

    often overlooked is the fact that an ideal is a mental invention which stands against reality as a rejection of the true course of things and a belief that reality should be other than it is.

    reality is perfect until you compare it to something its not.

    the absurdity of sin arises from the fact that an all knowing god is condemning people for being the exact reality he eternally knew by comparison to a fantasy ideal he likewise always knew to be a lie. insanity-- doing the same thing expecting different result?

    how can a sane omniscient god ever be angry for people doing EXACTLY what he always knew they would?

    which brings up another distinction.... we can divide reality into many judgements besides good and evil based on norms, averages

  • DannyHaszard

    Two words:predatory psychopath = evil

    Psychopath (aka sociopath) = no conscience

    Danny Haszard has a lot to say about the psychopath pathology at my home page,been around a lot of em.

  • jgnat

    I won't consider evil a thing that exists on it's own, like ether to be gathered up in a bottle. The personal definition I have made for myself is any deliberate action that injures a weaker one. Especially if it is to the younger generation. I understand that for this definition to stand I have set up a personal philosophy of what is "good" and what is "bad". I believe in life, growth, and creativity. Call me a mom.

    So, for a father to call his son a "stupid twit, you will never amount to anything" so that the child will hand over his share of pie, is evil. The father has injured his child and the child's future development for selfish gain. Evil.

    Avalanche destroys a village ... terrible tragedy but not evil. There was no deliberate act.

    I don't think sin and evil are the same thing. There are all kinds of taboos that a society builds up to control behavior. Some of those taboos are to prevent evil, for some the reasons are buried in the mists of time.

    JW wife forgets to wear her tea-towel when she prays out loud in front of her husband? She broke a taboo. A sin in her eyes perhaps, but not evil.

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