It has taken me 60 years to begin to be comfortable using the four letter word ‘evil’ as I am beginning to personally understand what I mean when I use that word. It’s not that I don’t have a very solid background of experience with what the presence of evil can do to self and others in a lifetime. In fact, it is no doubt because I do have an extensive personal history with evil that I have avoided using the word at all — until I gained some personal confidence that I know what evil is to me.
I wasn’t supposed to SEE the evil that surrounded me during the 18 years I lived through severe abuse from my severely ill mother. I wasn’t supposed to know it was there, that it existed, that what was being done to me had a name. I wasn’t supposed to have words to talk about the evil that so existed in my universe as a child that barely nothing else happened at all.
And for nearly 60 years I have remained evil-blind. Being evil-blind leaves me at risk for being blindsided by evil. Not any more! I see the enemy now! This enemy has nothing to do with some fake red devil running around with a pitchfork and goat feet. Nope. Evil comes from one source — and one source only: HUMANS.
Now how humans actually end up DOING evil seems to be through processes that are far too complex for me to understand. I am comfortably able to accept the words presented here about the difference between humans DOING evil versus BEING evil:
It makes sense to me that evil is committed by humans because of the three difficulties mentioned in the words at that link:
I had some face-to-face conversations today as well as some online ones with people who were unbelievably hurt and wounded by adults in their childhoods. Today I can finally, and fortunately, think about what I hear in stories of the suffering of innocents that what was done to them (as well as to me) was ABSOLUTELY EVIL.
I have no more confusion.
I know what evil is.
I know what it is when I hear descriptions about actions that are one thing and one thing only — EVIL.
Evil is the absence of goodness. All goodness comes from God (there is only one God, who sent the great Beings to humanity over time that created every religion on earth).
Reality is the light of God’s love. The darkness of evil is, yes, very real — but it is not GOD’S reality. It is humanity’s.
My mother had a terrible disease that prevented the goodness of her soul from operating through her body/brain in her lifetime. There was great sickness, ignorance and immaturity (and therefore evil) in all adults I ever met during my 18 years of suffering as a child who did not SEE what was happening to me.
For every story of child abuse and tragedy I heard today — each of them a clear description of the operation of evil — I felt great compassion for the huge amount of suffering that unbridled, unchecked evil creates in life on this planet. This suffering is needless!
But humanity has yet to take the turn it needs to take at accepting that the One God (however people relate to God) wants only the happiness and well-being of His creation. Humanity does have a choice. So far it appears to me that evil will be increasingly darkening the planet until humans choose to reach for, ask for, and accept the infinite supply of GRACE that God has made available to us.
All goodness comes from God. Evil comes from human inability for whatever reasons to live in goodness and to recognize its Source.
One way or another the day is coming when our species is going to make the choice to leave evil out of our lives – personally and collectively. The entire combined society of humanity will eventually forbid its presence in any of our affairs. No, not in my lifetime — but without any doubt that day is coming.
I personally believe it is a great stride in the right direction for us to notice and to name evil for what it is every single time we encounter it — anywhere. Goodness is infinitely more powerful than the shadow of the absence of goodness – which is what evil is. Why do we allow this poison to exist?
Of course the most important place for me to spot evil — and the hardest place for me to spot evil — is within my own self. Do I always do the right thing? I can pray for help and I can pray for forgiveness — however I choose to do that — and I know both will be given to me.