User Tag List

Page 2 of 7 FirstFirst 1234 ... LastLast
Results 11 to 20 of 63

Thread: What Creates Evil? What can be done about it?

  1. #11
    Healer-in-Training Array Morning Star's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    9w1 sx/so
    EII Ne


    This story just about sums up my beliefs on the topic:

    One evening an old man told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two wolves inside us all."
    "One is evil - he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego."
    He continued, "The other is good - he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith. The same fight is going on inside you - and inside every other person, too."
    The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, "Which wolf will win?"
    The old man simply replied, "The one you feed."
    Only she who attempts the absurd can achieve the impossible... and then some.

    MY BLOGS:,

  2. #12
    Senior Member Array tinker683's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    9w1 sx/sp


    I read once in Robert Bloom's "The Lucifer Principle" that Evil is created by the potent cocktail of living with other humans beings with all of our impulses and desires in a limited amount of space with resources that are distributed unevenly. This always made a lot of sense to me.

    As for doing something about it: Laws, good government and values that promote peace, love and cooperation. Beyond that, I don't really know
    "There is no such thing as spare time, no such thing as down time, no such thing as free time, there is only life time. Go."
    ― Henry Rollins

  3. #13


    We've got evil as a concept (philosophical) and evil as manifest (psychological). Former touches on questions such as whether or not there's an absolute morality out there; the latter addresses, say, why we kill one another.

    For one psychological perspective--the "situationist" one--check out this video of Zimbardo (Stanford Prison Experiment fame) halfway down the page.

    As far as how it can be solved? Baron-Cohen believes that evil can be defined in terms of empathy ("shining a spotlight on the other"), and we can then concentrate on empathy.

    Quote Originally Posted by SneakyNinja View Post
    I think EVIL is just a "strong" word people use to describe things they really don't like. It's not an object.
    There's this, too. Lance Morrow points out that the word 'evil' is a lil' box that people toss 'bad stuff' into, and it's ill-defined by nature. He goes on to say that keeping the word 'evil' nebulous and unclear is actually useful for us as a psychological construct.

  4. #14
    lackluster primate Array Night's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007


    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    What do you consider evil, and how do you you believe this evil comes about?

    What can we do about evil?
    Evil is what happens when individual self-interest is elevated above the needs of a community. It's a sociological value statement describing how certain behaviors endanger the basic needs of a group of people unified towards shared goal/s. Good is then an evaluation of how behavior promotes these goals.

    Good cultivates community survival, generally as a result of individual sacrifice. Evil cultivates individual survival, generally as a result of community sacrifice.

    Why do they occur? Because we want to survive.

  5. #15
    Tempbanned Array
    Join Date
    Oct 2013


    Evil is for fools alone.

    That is, only fools believe in it.

  6. #16
    Post Human Post Array Qlip's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    4w5 sp/sx


    What can be done about it? Destroy all subjective perception.

  7. #17


    Evil is consciousness without purpose. Nothing erodes the soul faster than a life that is meaningless.

  8. #18
    Banned Array
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    5w6 sx/so


    Evil is present within the very foundations of this natural order; the battle for survival itself and all of the tortures that it entails makes life evil I think.

    Evolution is evil because it makes life a painful struggle, and life really shouldn't be that way; it could be a fun struggle - that's the ideal way to evolve.

  9. #19
    deplorable basketcase Array Tellenbach's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2013


    There's a terrific book about the subject aptly titled "Evil" by Roy Baumeister. Evil is defined as doing intentional or deliberate harm to another. Most people have the capacity to do evil and the perpetrators seldom view themselves as evil. Terrorists who blow up buses think it's for a noble cause and view the act as a purely technical event. They fail to connect the act with the suffering of their victims. The Nazis believed they were just because of how unfair they were treated after WWI and all they were doing was trying to keep up with America. The guy who beats his wife is usually a hypersensitive individual who sees slights and insults where none was intended. He veiws himself as a victim and battering the wife is merely a form of self-defense.

    So, if we all have the capacity to do evil, why aren't there more evil acts committed? It's a question of self-control. That's the difference. Some individuals lack the ability to control their desires. I recall an impulse control experiment with kids and toys. Kids were seated opposite some toys and told not to turn around. When the experimenter left the room, a good number of kids couldn't resist the urge and turned their heads. They lacked self-control. Same with evil-doers.
    "Stop eating cupcakes! Stop Eating Cupcakes!! STOP EATING CUPCAKES!!"

  10. #20


    Thanks all for such thoughtful and diverse responses.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nights and Days View Post
    There is the capacity for evil inside each of us, lurking deep down.

    It's just.. more practical for us to hide it away to ensure our own survival, in this society of ours.
    This is certainly true. What do you think of @AngelLight2012 's theory regarding feeding the wolf that we want to win?

    Thanks for pointing me to sources @tinker683 @bologna @Tellenbach I might, in addition, look at Michael Shermer's Science of Good and Evil

    Zimbardo's research was what I was most familiar with before.

    I have been looking at article and summaries of Baron-Cohen's work on the matter as well. (I only recently got paid for the month, and I won't have money in the budget for books for a while).
    It is interesting that he considers Zero Degrees of empathy the reason people are cruel. He seems to claim that people who are zero negative (the Borderline Personality, the Narcissist, and Psychopaths-both the Antisocial, and Conduct Disorder varieties) all have defects in their empathy circuits and have in some sense reached the end of their maturation cycle. He claims, however, autistic individuals (whom he calls zero positive) can improve their effective empathy through systematic practice.

    I wonder, however, if he only sees hope in Autists because that's who he works with directly. Also, I can imagine someone (though I don't think I know anyone) who knows exactly how the person they are hurting feels, and is doing harm specifically because it makes the person being harmed feel that way.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

Similar Threads

  1. [NT] Evil Genius and Evil Masterminds: ENTP or INTJ?
    By yenom in forum The NT Rationale (ENTP, INTP, ENTJ, INTJ)
    Replies: 70
    Last Post: 05-17-2016, 01:37 PM
  2. [Fi] Fi creates feelings?
    By INTP in forum The NF Idyllic (ENFP, INFP, ENFJ, INFJ)
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 08-05-2010, 01:38 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts