Friday, April 17, 2015

580: EvilL, a Philosophical Investigation

Today we start a new challenge: a philosophical investigation of the phenomenon, which we call EVIL, a phenomenon with many faces.
On Youtube you can watch numerous movies of how a lion kills such a cute and elegant antelope. Such a mean animal! Just look how it……!
How cruel nature is. The next moment we enjoy a juicy steak, hardly thinking about the fact that it was part of a cow. Also a cute and elegant animal.
What is cruel, what is not? We feel sympathy for the poor antelope, but hardly think of the cow that became a steak on our plate. What is evil?
There is something peculiar in the evolution of the human mind. You can observe two tendencies.
It is really remarkable. On the one hand we look at our world as a world of opposites. We have light and darkness, heat and cold,
and also there is pain and pleasure, love and hate, good and evil, there is god and the devil. This binary way of thinking is such a common method , it seems.
On the other hand, when you take science, for example, there is a strong tendency to monism. For all kinds of phenomena we try to find that unifying theory.
In our culture we succeeded in reducing the number of gods to one,as well as all demons to just one devil. However, this  monotheism and monodiabolism is in itself a dualism again.
Just listen to this: 
-QUOTE- With every day, and from both sides of my intelligence, the moral and the intellectual, I thus drew steadily nearer to that truth, 
by whose partial discovery I have been doomed to such a dreadful shipwreck: that man is not truly one, but truly two. (…)
It was on the moral side, and in my own person, that I learned to recognize the thorough and primitive duality of man; 
I saw that, of the two natures that contended in the field of my consciousness, even if I could rightly be said to be either, it was only because I was radically both; (…)
It was the curse of mankind that these incongruous fagots were thus bound together that in the agonized womb of consciousness, 
these polar twins should be continuously struggling. How, then, were they dissociated? -END QUOTE-
This is the pondering of Dr. Jekyll from the novel by Robert Louis Stevenson: “The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde” (1886)
His intention was to separate the good and evil in man by putting these in their own body. When you then kick out all Mr. Hydes you’ll have a monistic world of only good people.
His plan failed, so we are still caught in this dualism. We are still our own Dr. Jekyll and Mr Hyde, but now reconfigured by Freud’s ideas about a conscious and subconscious mind. Again a dualism.
Similar reflections on the animal inside us we’ll encounter in “Republic” of Plato, or in the christian belief that we basically are sinful creatures, who can do some good now and then.
But the problems we have with the evil inside ourselves is not all. There is much more evil around. The whole world, or our whole life can be evil as such
Just listen to Schopenhauer in his “Studies in Pessimism” (1851, part of the work ‘Parerga’)
-QUOTE- If children were brought into the world by an act of pure reason alone, would the human race continue to exist? 
Would not a man rather have so much sympathy with the coming generation as to spare it the burden of existence? 
or at any rate not take it upon himself to impose that burden upon it in cold blood. -END QUOTE-
And there is more, war for instance. Is war evil? We are easily willing to say yes, but going after the Nazis in World War II, who murdered millions of people? Was that evil?
Are natural disasters like earthquakes, flooding, erupting volcanos or huge devastating fires evil?
There  too is that other issue. Coming from atheism we yet did not discuss that question in extenso: How can there be a omnipotent and benevolent god, who even created this world and also so much evil at the same time?
We can not ignore it. Like the Encyclopedia of philosophy says:  “The problem of evil concerns the contradiction, or apparent contradiction, between the reality of evil on the one hand, 
and religious beliefs in the goodness and power of God or of the Ultimate on the other.”
But listen carefully, evil isn’t the problem here, but only this contradiction. You do not need gods to have evil in this world.
First there is the general question: “How can rational beings commit evil acts?”,  only then the question: “How can rational beings belief in  the existence of an omnipotent, benevolent creator and the existence of evil?”
In other words, enough philosophical material for another project….
Thank you all….the floor is yours… ^_^

The Discussion

Bejiita Imako: hehe
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): we shall see
Bejiita Imako:
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): you keep us busy herman
herman Bergson: Indeed we will Gemma :-))
Bejiita Imako: indeed
Bejiita Imako: hehe
herman Bergson: that is my philosophical duty Beertje :-))
Bejiita Imako: true
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): smiles
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): we all have evil parts in us
Bejiita Imako: the idea of evil is complex indeed
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): its a part of life
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): and the thing is to handle with it
herman Bergson: Do you really think so, Daruma???:-)
Bejiita Imako: nature disasters cant be evil however, for evil there must be a conscious being with desire to cause damage
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): some people do not believe they have evil in them
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): or the possibility of it
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ja to consume more than u need is also a part of evil
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): being selfish
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): which has always amazed me
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): dont thinking about consequences
Bejiita Imako: another thing there
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): e.g. wearing fur - eating meat
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): we are very far away of beeing good
herman Bergson: hold on....!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): is that evil??
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): llol
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): not very
herman Bergson: hold on!
Bejiita Imako: this can get complicated
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): but we are not really good
Bejiita Imako:
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): lol
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): sorreee
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): guesses we need a workiing definition of evil
herman Bergson: The things Daruma mentions are closely related to ethics...
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): on a poster to remember for the classes
herman Bergson: intersting...but yet...
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): but not having real ethics in my life - isnt that a kind of evil?
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): is the skinny guy on the poster a difinition of evil?
herman Bergson: Well..Gemma ..isn’t that our objective here,?
herman Bergson: To find a definitiion of evil?
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): Beertje we did not find that out yet
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): for now - its only bones...
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ah ok
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): ( he looks like Herman ) giggles....
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): thougth you already had one
Bejiita Imako: lol
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): rofl
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): we will be wandering all over the grid in discussions then
herman Bergson: Take yoyr time....
herman Bergson: your
herman Bergson: We aren't in a hurry to define EVIL....we want to study it..
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): in and out of doors
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ok
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): as long as you know
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): what shall be off topic then
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): back to daruma
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ja can it be evil when humans act as they have to. cos they did not learn it in a different way
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): every human has patterns from his partenst e.g.
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): what is evil?
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): and when they only got to know e.g. beeing brutal, so what shuld they give to the world?
herman Bergson laughs
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): evidently we don’t know yet
herman Bergson: Hold on!
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ja so is it evil to kill e.g someone?
herman Bergson: I just introduced a new theme...and you already want the ultimate answer...
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
CB Axel: 42?
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ja and?
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): see
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ;-)
herman Bergson: You put me out odf a job this way!!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): here we go in and out of doors
CB Axel: Sorry.
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lol
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): one door ethics
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): or 12 as mr. spock would say
CB Axel: Is doing bad evil or does there have to be malicious intent?
Bejiita Imako:
herman Bergson: I would say.... 42
herman Bergson: so..
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): yes mr bones up there does look like Herman
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): oh dear
Bejiita Imako:
herman Bergson: thank you all for trying to put me out of my job :-)
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): perhaps we search too much for answers and don’t try out life;-)
Bejiita Imako: we are EVIL!
CB Axel: LOL
Bejiita Imako: lol
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): jjaaaa bejita
herman Bergson: YOU ALL ARE !!!!
Bejiita Imako: MUAHAHAHAH
herman Bergson: Class
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): in a way - yes
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): we all are
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Herman get's scared....
CB Axel: I'm not sure I'm evil. I can be thoughtless at times.
Bejiita Imako: evil is complex indeed
Bejiita Imako: where do the line go
herman Bergson: Just wait and see Bejiita..:-)
herman Bergson: Evil is fun :-))
herman Bergson: sorry..
herman Bergson: project on 'Evil' is fun :-))
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): ah
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): so you say
CB Axel: Fighting evil would be fun. It allows bloodlust to run free without guilt.
CB Axel: Or, at least, less guilt.
Bejiita Imako: my definition of evil is deliberately want to harm people nature ect for own winning
Bejiita Imako: or similar
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): hang on to it bejiita..
Bejiita Imako: or just having all screw looe like Hitler and Breivik had
Bejiita Imako: loose
CB Axel: But Bejiita, I don't think the harm even has to be for one's own benefit.
Bejiita Imako: maybee not
CB Axel: In fact, doing harm just for the sake of doing harm is more evil, IMO.
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): it has always been my opinion that people who seem to be really evil are partly sick in the head
CB Axel: Psychopaths?
Bejiita Imako: for me too
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): possibly
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): cos they act different to the most of us?
Bejiita Imako: something is wrong up there in their heads for sure
CB Axel: Those are the ones who are evil just for the sake of being evil.
CB Axel: What about those who are evil for their own gain?
Bejiita Imako: must be something like that
CB Axel: Dick Cheney.
CB Axel: Donald Trump.
CB Axel: The Koch brothers.
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ey donald trump;-)
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): they are not evil just stupid!!!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): rich and stupid
Bejiita Imako: hehe
CB Axel: I wish the Koch brothers were stupid. They are smart and greedy.
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): not stupid. they have power and knowledge, but they use it for selfish things.
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): mostly
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): yep
herman Bergson: maybe being stupid can be evil too, Gemma :-)
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): right
Bejiita Imako: hmm
CB Axel: But to be evil, does one have to be smart enough to realize what they are doing is wrong?
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): i bought the book of donald trump. after reading i can say more^^
herman Bergson: lol..maybe we all are evil then too :-)) :-)
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): lolo
Bejiita Imako: heheh
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): we are herman
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): to be enlighted it needs a lot
herman Bergson: so...let's kick ass Daruma..:-))
CB Axel: Are we evil or just mischievous?
Bejiita Imako: hmm
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): knowing your ´shadows and beeing really open to everything - i guess its a very har work
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): since we dont have a definition maybe maybe ot
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): not
Bejiita Imako: still dont think i have evil in me
herman Bergson: ahh CB...nice subtitle ty
Bejiita Imako: evil feels not like fit in my personality
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): wonders what happens when the golf club is bad
CB Axel: I certainly have evil thoughts about some people.
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): its all about thinking what can i eat, what can i wera etc.?
CB Axel: There are some people who would not want to meet me in a dark alley.
herman Bergson: Were you reading my mind CB? :-))
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): true
Bejiita Imako: haha
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): but all in the mind
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): these days we can inform us about everything how it is pruduced, and when u know that and still buy it. its a bit beeing evil
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): i think
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): evil thoughts
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): do not become behaviour
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): always
Bejiita Imako: ah
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ja and also evil thoughts when someone grabbed yur parking space
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate) GIGGLES!!
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ...LOL...
herman Bergson: Anyway,....
herman Bergson: you all are behaving already in an evil way...
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): i think we have in mind the devil and horror movies. but tats hollywoood^^
herman Bergson: for I already dismissed claas and tyou still go on :-)))
CB Axel: I have never wanted to kill anyone over a parking space.
CB Axel: Slash tires, maybe, but not kill.
Bejiita Imako: sure i want to put both Kim Jong II and Putin in the LHC and smash them to bits but these guys also are a threat to the world
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): mh killing someone depends on your own borders;-)
Bejiita Imako: the nasties guys on the planet at moment toghether with IS
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): everfybody can and will
Bejiita Imako: and Boko Haram
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): depends on the subject-
herman Bergson: lol™CB
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): shall be interesting
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): i see tht
Bejiita Imako: very
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): ja it is;-)
Bejiita Imako:
CB Axel: I'm not going to name those who make me feel stabby. I don't want to get on any CIA list.
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ok
herman Bergson: As I said...Class Dismissed :-)
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): ♥ Thank Youuuuuuuuuu!! ♥
Bejiita Imako: cu tuesday
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): thank uuu
herman Bergson: Such a not listening evil bunch you are!
CB Axel: OK. We're keeping poor Herman up.
Bejiita Imako: heheh
CB Axel: LOL
Bejiita Imako:
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lol
.: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): poor Herman
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine): tuesday perhaps^^
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): bye for now
Daruma Hermine Boa (hermine) waves
Bejiita Imako: bye
Bejiita Imako:
herman Bergson: yes me on Tuesday again Daruma....
Gemma Allen (gemma.cleanslate): bye
CB Axel: This is going to be a fun topic, I can see.
CB Axel: Good bye, everyone. See you Tuesday.

No comments:

Post a Comment