Exploring the Idea of Evil Essay example

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People have constantly attempted to understand what evil truly is, and, if possible, how to eliminate this evil from their lives. However, first it must be known what it is that is being eliminated. Different people, cultures, and eras have all had a different view of what evil is, and how it affects their lives, and there is no true answer. Because of this, discussing the idea of whether people are born or can be evil is meaningless. The idea of what evil is, and whether people can be evil, is relative and cannot be applied to human nature in a universal way.
The discussion of whether evil exists is dependent on the definition of evil. In the sense of human action, evil can be seen as consciously doing harmful acts. The idea of what …show more content…

Therefore, according to Plato, no one is truly evil. However, if it seen from the perspective of others, the act that is good for a person can be seen as evil for others. For example, if a person steals to feed himself and his starving family, he can be seen as doing a good act because he is doing what is right for him and for his family. However, to the storeowner, the same act is seen as evil because the thief consciously caused harm to the storeowner. The very same act is seen as both good and evil, dependant on the perspective that the act is seen from.
Although evil is dependent on the viewpoint from which it is seen from, some philosophers, such as Lyall Watson, doubt that evil exists at all. According to Watson, evil is a force of nature and is a part of nature, and as such, it can be said that evil is an illusion that does not exist. However, according to dualism, this is not possible. Evil can only coexist with good, regardless of whether it is universal or not. If no evil existed, then all actions would now be varying degrees of good. The ‘least good’ act would then be considered evil, and evil would once again exist. Because good and evil are opposites, one cannot exist without the other. Also, supposing that all evil did not exist, the only alternative action would be good. Therefore, if evil is taken away, or does not exist, then people would

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