Are people inherently evil?

Discussion in 'General Philosophy' started by ??!!?!?_particlename, Jun 19, 2002.

  1. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    :roflmao:
     
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  3. John99 Banned Banned

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    To add to that: I think we are too sensitive. Like if a person calls you a bad name people will laugh and say "oh...that was funny" but the person called the bad name will think "he\she is evil for calling me a bad name". I think it really boils down to "done to me ='s evil...done to another ='s not evil". Certainly not according to me though.
     
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  5. John99 Banned Banned

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    In that sense we may ask: "Are people inherently narcissists?"

    And now we are talking some real possibility here.
     
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  7. birch Valued Senior Member

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    you are technically correct. there is nothing in your post that is refutable.

    but evil is defined to identify intent or acts that are meant/intended to be malicious or damaging.

    it's true that it's not an object which we can measure and we can't see or know someone's intent anymore than anyone can know what we are thinking.

    we often use terms that are not technically the best fit but are understood in context.
     
  8. John99 Banned Banned

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    Well technically "evil" is a religious term.
     
  9. YoYoPapaya Trump/Norris - 2012 Registered Senior Member

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  10. John99 Banned Banned

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    To use the term "evil" signifies no natural or scientific explanation for a persons behaviour. Fairly recently science has born out that this is not the case so then i would ask you: Do you believe in demons? or something similar along those lines.
     
  11. YoYoPapaya Trump/Norris - 2012 Registered Senior Member

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    Sorry... That was not at your last comment. It was at this:

     
  12. John99 Banned Banned

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    It is true though. When it really comes down to it and barring undue influence.
     
  13. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    It isn't supposed to. It's a description of behaviour.

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    Link required. You're bullshitting.
    Please show why science would bother investigating the term "evil" as a reason for behaviour.

    And we've been through this "evil is a religious term" before, remember? When you persisted in claiming that it was derived from the word "devil", were shown to be completely wrong and ended up back-pedalling rapidly.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
  14. birch Valued Senior Member

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    even though this may be a sidepoint to the discussion, even a description of behavior has a cause. people don't just commit actions just to do them. the intent and reasons were there first. for instance, one can say they are having an evil thought but that's only if it's serious. when it's serious, they may plan to act it out.
     
  15. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    It's a good first step to trying to objectify the notion of evil and its still in the subjective slippery slope realm. A doctor will inject you with an antibiotic if you have a bad bacterial infection. He has a malicious intend to damage bacteria. We may hear that a country is about to attack us and wipe them off the face of the planet with over powered weapons. That is a malicious intent to damage humans. This type of listing can go on endlessly. If you want to objectify evil then it has to be done in the context of what it is... which is a label that humans assign to various behaviors and events that exceed their tolerance for acceptance (and yes people declare many natural events evil). But of course once objectified like this, the thread poster's question is exposed as being a bad question.

    No disagreement here; however, the thread creator is seeking an objective answer based on subjective context. There simply is no answer to a question like that because it is a bad question.
     
  16. glaucon tending tangentially Moderator

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    A good point birch, but, as you note,not quite on topic here.

    What's being focused on there is of ethical import: we're talking about value judgements being applied to behaviour. As Dywyddyr has rightly noted, this is a question of linguistic nature. There is no need whatsoever to involve any religious concerns in this discussion.
     
  17. John99 Banned Banned

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  18. birch Valued Senior Member

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    this is true that the term 'evil' can be defined in any number of ways and it's up to the individual. you are right that is the reason why it is a slippery slope since people will have their own views. i personally don't agree with the examples you used. it doesn't take into account the real motive or reason to my understanding.

    we kill bacterial infections, otherwise it's our lives at stake. one may kill others if they are a threat etc.

    what differs from your view to mine is that i define evil as an intentional motive to hurt without due cause or out of defense. that is how i define it and there are people who do just enjoy harming others. i think most people are guilty of this on some level whether to people or other lifeforms, some more and some less.

    bottomline, i see evil not so much as the actions because they are a symptom of their values. i see evil as a value system that does not take into account the rights of others, either directly or indirectly, which cause those motives to actions. this will create backlash and i think that is where i see evil most consistently is a non-respect for life in general as the root when one expects or wants that for themselves.

    you have been assuming that i can't be totally objective about the concept of 'evil' but i can. actually that is rather easy in my opinion. i just don't think it's correct or considers enough in my opinion.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2011
  19. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    Fail.
    Try looking at other definitions too:
    http://thinkexist.com/dictionary/meaning/malicious/
    He harbours ill-will toward the bacteria.
    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/malicious
    He intends to be deliberately harmful to the bacteria.

    If the best you've got is erroneous quibbling about terms then stop posting.
     
  20. birch Valued Senior Member

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    not quite accurate. is it out of self-defense is the question.

    i don't 'harbor' ill-will toward a bacteria or spite etc. that is very different than killing bacteria because it is harmful to you.
     
  21. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    The doctor intends harm to it.
     
  22. wellwisher Banned Banned

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    The tree of knowledge of good and evil is a symbol used by the ancients to explain the nature of good and evil. They inferred that evil is connected to knowledge and not instinct; tree of knowledge of good and evil. Evil is learned/taught via knowledge, with individuals able to extrapolate evil, like we do with other forms of knowledge. Knowledge of trees leads to further knowledge of trees. It is not part of natural instinct; tree of life.

    Animal can do many things we might call evil, if humans did the same thing (kill). But it is not evil for them to do these things, since they follow their natural instincts which help them integrate with nature. Being dumb animals, they can't learn knowledge like humans, which keeps them from eating of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. If they could learn knowledge of good and evil, both good and evil would appear in their natural world.
     
  23. Dywyddyr Penguinaciously duckalicious. Valued Senior Member

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    Supposition:

    QED.

    The rest of your post is nonsense.
     

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