Evil and Human Nature

1277 Words6 Pages
Alan Moore’s V for Vendetta, William Shakespeare’s Richard III, and John Garder’s Grendel _______ The topic of evil and from where it originates is one that cannot be proven through factual evidence, and so rather is a notion that exists only in the thoughts of each individual, allowing him or her to possess unique beliefs that affect the way he or she lives.
What is considered evil depends upon each individual’s view of morality, which constantly changes through the course of that person’s life. Roy Perrett’s “Evil and Human Nature” explains this by elaborating on the customary interpretation of moral evil. This evil, caused by an intentional bad action or harm, opposes another type of evil, natural evil, which occurs without intervention of a human agent. While natural evils, such as hurricanes and disease, may allude to the existence of a greater evil power, moral evils rather exist due to human decision and are more commonly recognized. However, Perrett claims that even the acknowledgement of moral evils, “does not seem to capture what many people have in mind when they talk of evil. Evil is instead often understood to be a very special kind of moral category: it involves not just wrongdoing, but a special kind of intentional wrongdoing” (304). This familiar definition of evil expands upon the vague topic of moral evil, in that the perpetrator of this sinister action enjoys and does not regret ever committing the action. Correspondingly, in order to comply with the currently recognized definition of evil, the action must be done solely because it is wrong and harmful. Therefore, it can be argued that the government in Alan Moore’s V for Vendetta is not evil in the modern sense. While some believe that murdering innocent peo...

... middle of paper ...

...gly made the world” (55). Ultimately, however, Bernstein arrives at the conclusion that individuals are never in a position to doubt God or gods because humans cannot even begin to fathom the complexity of a more powerful entity. Therefore, humans are also not in a position to question the choices that may have been made by any type of god. Every statement regarding evil is biased and without fact, and therefore humans look to religious writings and works to provide answers for an inscrutable being and evil force. Even if scientific evidence someday uncovers that the pessimistic philosophy regarding evil as innately human is proven true, religious believers could still argue that any inherently human quality has at some point been influenced and provided by a more powerful entity. Therefore, humans will always have differing opinions about the true source of evil.
Open Document