Is man Good or Evil?

Essay by Anonymous UserCollege, Undergraduate January 1996

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Man is innately good, but has the ability to be evil.

I believe that a majority of people do what they believe to be right.

Whether they are correct or not is another matter. In order to be truly

evil, I believe that one has to purposely, consciously, try to hurt others.

Be it physically or mentally, a conscious effort to injure others is for no

obvious benifit to the human race is evil. I also think that good and evil

are on totally different planes than right and wrong. They do not go

hand in hand. I believe this because good and evil in my mind are

concrete, they do not change. Right and wrong, however, are more of an

individual thing, which can not be confined to guidelines.

As I said before, I believe that people try to do good most of the

time. As in every rule, however, there is an exception.

There are certain

circumstances in life which can change the way a person acts.

There is a definite duality within me. I am usually a good person. I

open doors, push in chairs, listen to people, and help little kids. But,

occasionally I catch myself thinking about how I could make someone feel

bad. I automatically feel my face turn red, and that would be the end of

the thought. But I think once in a while everyone thinks something like,

'He would really be embarrassed if I told everyone about that time at

camp. Plus I could get him back,' or something like, 'She doesn't

deserve that. What if they found out what she did last year.' This is not

exactly evil thoughts, but it can quite possibly lead to evil actions.

Prejudice is another form of evil that produces alienation and war.

I have certain prejudices that I carry and I am not very proud of them,

though often my instinct about a person is right. My major prejudice is

against people who cannot grasp new concepts at a relatively quick rate,

or those who cannot understand quickly. Somebody put it best by

saying, 'Oh, you mean the stupid people.' I truly do hate calling them

that, because often what they don't succeed at academically, they make it

up through artistic talents, athletic, or mechanical talents. But the

people I have no respect for are those who I know can think for

themselves, and understand things, but choose not to. I sometimes have

trouble understanding if a person just absolutely cannot get it. I have a

couple of friends who are that way, and they just cannot figure out trig.

or chemistry. I just get frustrated and want to yell, 'Why don't you get

this? Why can't you understand that the thirty-sixty triangle always

has a 1-2- 3 ratio!?' But I can't because one, I would seem like a total

jerk, which I probably would be, and two, they are my friends.

Then there are those people who dress and act, and are in fact,

'druggies'. This prejudice kind of ties in with the first one because if

the person is intelligent, than I have absolutely no problem with them

dressing etc. like they do. But if they are one of the people who think

that the cranium is a type of juice, then I seriously get so stressed out

that I want to grab them by their lapels and shake them to jump start the

brain I know they have.

How does this effect my life? I know that it puts a great amount of

extra stress on me that I could definitely live with out. But it also really

makes me fell bad that I feel this way. I think that I am pretty open

minded when it comes to the types of prejudice that are usually

discussed, such as racism and sexism. I also am not homophobic and

usually do not discriminate on the basis of age. In fact, I am very much

biased against the people that are such. However, I believe that my

prejudices are not something which contribute to hate crimes, the deaths

of minorities or the dreams of a young girl. I feel that my biases are

very much benign.

A Shaker saying is something which if all men lived by, the world

would be a ahppy place. Mary Whitcher said,'Be slow to anger, slow to

blame, and slow to plead thy cause. but swift to speak of any gain that

gives thy friend applause.'