on good and evil.

10 November 2011 § 1 Comment

On one of my rare ventures into the blogging world, I found something interesting: http://livingthekingdom.wordpress.com/2011/11/02/just-some-thoughts-about-suffering-life-and-the-meaning-of-evil-and-good

Here’s a quote from it:

Good is to empty ourselves from preconceived ideas, bias, religion, discrimination, and other traits that we use to maintain selfish, rigid lifestyles. This is the first step.  The second step is to then reach out and put the other’s needs as equal as our own.  Good is to perceive others as equal, no matter how different.  Good is to forgive, volunteer, share, sacrifice, and accept others, always in joy and not expecting a reward. Good is simply everything that truly unites us.  This is the same as the definition of Love.

If Good is to empty ourselves of all the (presumably negative) experiences that we use to maintain “selfish, rigid lifestyles,” are we not emptying ourselves of the things that made us who we are? Are these not  the things which led us to think that _____ is evil, or ____ is good?

And is it also good to perceive others as our equals, when they in fact may not be? And If, perhaps, someone’s definition of Good differs from the one above, are they still Good, if they follow their own definition of it?

Many people get caught up in the moral good for the greatest result, without regard for self. To a certain extent, that is how we build families and communities that work together with love, and because I think we can agree that this is a good thing, it works for them.

However, we are self-centered beings (meaning that our core interests are in our own well-being and survival), and if we pay attention to our own needs and wants (the fundamental need to eat, or the want to maintain a healthy relationship, for example), we are better for it. We feel better about ourselves, and the positive energy we exude from that feeling of self-satisfaction, the fulfilment of our desires, such as to write a novel in thirty days, radiates in what we do for others. It can make us more understanding, sympathetic, and supportive of others’ struggles and tribulations.

And so it cannot be such a terrible thing to be “self-ish” in that we strive to meet our own needs (for we must!) before looking out for the welfare of others – for if we are not prepared, or have no experience of the negative things in life, how can we understand each other’s suffering, or communicate solutions effectively, if we have no definition, no reference point?

While I disagree that it is Evil to think about our own needs before someone else’s (for some needs, plans, and wants are simpler and more humble than others), because if I am not doing exactly what I should be doing, what my body and spirit and mind say I should be doing, I cannot be that angel for others, who brings with me a selfless desire to help and support (which, makes some people feel better, therefore meeting a “selfish” desire), then they cannot fully benefit from everything I have contribute to the world (i.e. them). Likewise, If they are not being and doing who and what they should be – that is, meeting their needs and desires to contribute _____ to the world – I cannot fully be me, because they are taking something away from what they could contribute to the world we both live in (i.e. me), and could be taking away one of these experiences which I could learn from and use to form my definition of what is good, and what is evil.

My apologies for the longwinded reply. The world isn’t such an evil place, though, Noel. People may not speak your language, but that doesn’t mean they’re not listening.

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§ One Response to on good and evil.

  • Noel says:

    Tradersolstice, my definition of Good is to empty ourselves of those qualities that make us selfish, that make us “the center of our lives”. which does not include who we truly are. We are truly a part of a whole, part of a big community, and being selfish is separating ourselves from this big community to a life of true isolation, indulged in individual ambitions, and consumption.This kind of isolated lifestyle is the definition of evil, because it involves working hard to exclusively satisfy the self, without the regard of the rest of the community. This is then manifested in greed, lies, hatred, envy, wars, addictions, etc. When we take the bold and unpopular step of denying all of these qualities (which are natural but not good), then we start practicing good, and therefore getting closer to God. Jesus’ teachings reflect this when he talked about “denying the self” , “loving our enemies”, “turning the other cheek” , “being humble” etc. This does not mean that I am not going to take care of my basic need, since doing good is not putting others above me, but equal to me. Thank you for commenting and sharing.

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