Evil is that which needs unqualified and complete and immediate rejection and disregard. That is more than just how we respond to evil. It is about seeing evil as it is in itself.

There is:

Necessary evil


Unnecessary evil – the fact that the evil is not needed is supposed to deter you from committing it


Necessary evil then encourages you to do it. Unnecessary evil is thin in how its uselessness and futility is supposed to put you off. The evil is futile to your victims but what about you? You get something out of it otherwise you would not be doing it.  One way necessary evil poisons people is that when you think you see a god hurting another you end up condoning it too flippantly.  Some have said that every single degradation torture and death in the Holocaust served God's moral purpose.  In the name of valuing each person experiencing terror and degradation, people imagine each one suffers in a plan for each one.  That is an example of that and there is something hideous about suggesting each person is part of a terrible plan as an individual.  It seems to be less savage to see them as a group as part of a plan.


Evil by definition is gratuitous. If all evil is unnecessary then free will of human kind must be to blame directly and indirectly. But if evil is all gratuitous then God can stop the most cruel of it. Even if it is true that we can say, “Why should he? There is no stopping point anyway!" we can see there is something warped in anybody thinking that way.

Why evil is made out to be the wrong kind of good

No normal person looks for the good in serious evils.

Nobody normal says that being abused by a paedophile was a good thing for them or that it was in any way beneficial.

Religious people say that evil and sin fits into God's plan for doing good. This demands that the good be seen in evil and in its results.

Religious people say God did not create evil for he is spotlessly good so evil is not a power or a created entity. It is a falling short of goodness. In other words, evil is good in the wrong place or time. Evil is using good wrongly.


Doctrine of the mean


Aristotle’s doctrine of the mean, the middle way, despite popular impressions is not about practicing moderation. The good soldier does not get in the middle between cowardice and foolhardiness. He does not get in the middle between being fearless and fearful. What he does is compromise each extreme in a sensible way. For example, he will be clear on the battlefield about what he has not to fear and what he has to fear and how much fear is appropriate.


It is said, "The doctrine of the mean does not permit compromising everything. There are some things in which there is no such thing as a right amount. Every amount of rape is too much. Every amount of baby suffering is too much."  But that is refuted by the fact that the mean is very complicated so nobody can judge the alleged wrongdoer but the wrongdoer.


The view that evil is something so useless and random that you must never wonder if there are reasons for it means there cannot by any compromise.  Doing something that you intend to be somewhere between good and evil is to do evil.

Watered down evil


Religion says God does not make evil. He makes only good and any evil that happens is a falling short of good. In order to believe in God and get comfort, religious people water down evil and the horrors of depression etc.

To water down evil is to become evil and to encourage, at least subtly, others to do evil. To water down evil is to water down good as well. To excuse God's callous standing by while babies suffer, is to water down morality between human beings. It effects us and is not just a theological matter. It is about God and what it says about us.

To say that evil is using good wrongly is to imply:

-that the good should be looked at first for it is cynical to fail to see the good in things

-that you should see the good in the person doing the evil despite the risk that you will stop seeing the evil as bad as it is

-see everything as more good than bad

-if you are forced to choose one or the other then choose to see the good.

That you are not forced is not the point. We are talking about what you would do and what this "would" says about you.

The religious lunacy that waters evil down so that faith may flow is sadly accepted as okay even by unbelievers. But it is not an acceptable view.

It is only people who are afraid of believers in God or of God or who want to believe in God almost condone evil and the evil of refusing to view evil in its true form. That people pay such a price over a religious belief is disgraceful. That they are willing to shows they have taken a step to becoming dehumanised and it is luck and chance if they don't take it to an extreme.


The mess that religion makes of talking about evil shows that it is using a form of the ends justifies the means.  They pretend they know what they are talking about to get power and influence.


The end justifies the means?


There can be evil means to a good end but the problem is not the means but how the good end looks like it is worth the bad things.  The bad means often look good or okay themselves.  Plus terrible things are sometimes done for a good reason.  For example, religion tells you to let yourself be tortured to death in the hope of pleasing God and saving others.  So it is very confusing.  One thing that is guaranteed to keep it confusing is the religious doctrine that evil is not a thing or power but just goodness in the wrong place and wrong time.  For example, a knife is good but it just happens to be in your victim's back and it is good that your victim is bleeding etc.


Religion pretends the sinner and the sin can be treated separately


Religion says that God did not make evil so evil is not a power or force but just a lack of goodness. It says evil is really nothing and totally worthless for it is nothing. But what is the point of condemning evil if you think a person cannot be evil? If evil is a lack or a power then is it something independent of you, something that can infect you but in someway not be in anyway part of you? Everybody says yes. But then it no more infects you than water infects a waterproof jacket. It is like a spider on your shoulder. They are lying that they separate sin and sinner and by talking about infection admit they do not separate them after all!


So they say evil is worthless and they say they do not regard a sinner in any way as worthless.  But then they contradict themselves by saying the sinner gives evil its worthlessness so the sinner is somehow worthless after all!  They curse the sinner in an underhand way and compound their own evil by lying about it and making it out to be good.

The hair-thin line

Those who believe that evil is warped good and is more good than bad say that in our heads we are attracted to the good in the evil we do which means we find it hard to work out what is good and what is bad. If we don't find it hard, we are mistaken. We don't see how hard it is.

When we do good, there will be some evil side-effects. For example, to look after homeless X means that you cannot have the time to think of baby Y who is more need of help.

When we do evil, there will be some good side-effects. For example, to murder your husband means you get his money which you donate to the hospital and save thousands of lives.

When we do evil, we can tell ourselves that we don't know all the reasons we will do it or how much bad or good it will do. We only see a bit of every situation we are in. So we could say, "I will murder X for it might be for the best. Who knows?"

There are evil consequences of our good actions that we will never fully discover. There are good consequences of our evil actions that we will never fully discover. Even if something was always good before it does not mean it will always be good in future.

As religion and society and the world believe in necessary evil - sometimes you have to do terrible things when it will avoid worse things - the matter gets impossible to deal with. And even more so when we only imagined the worse things were going to happen. Often they are not poised to happen at all if we do x y or z. Punishment is an example of necessary evil. Many people believe that the evil person suffering the direct and indirect evils that result from their crimes is far better than any punishment that can be given to them in civil law. They believe in indirect punishment and that the evil people should see their suffering as punishment.

It is all a confusing mess ...


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