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A Look at Evil

One can easily see the face of evil these days. It makes its way along crowded streets, sits in restaurants, gazes out of car windows. But what is evil, exactly? Is it simply an idea that springs out of the human mind…or is it a force or entity in its own right? And do we always know it when we see it?

“Because evil exists, Fabianus, as does the Evil One himself. And there are those who willingly follow him, those who love the darkness and hate the light, and we need to be conscious of this.”

Those are words spoken by Mary Magdalene to a young orphan boy–both of whom are characters in my new novel, The Memoirs of Saint John: When the Sandstone Crumbles. Yes, Evil does indeed exist, and there are, as well, clearly those who love the darkness and hate the light. But as to an actual entity, an Evil One, or Satan, I think whether such a being exists or not perhaps has a lot to do with the amount of willingness or receptivity that can be found in a human heart.  You could maybe think of it like a genie, whose existence depends on whether someone is willing to rub the bottle to make him come out. If the bottle is rubbed, then yes, the genie does exist.

To stretch the metaphor a little further, it would appear someone has done just that–rubbed the bottle. Moreover, it would also appear the genie, liberated from his bottle and in possession of his newfound existence, has delighted in finding a warm and hospitable reception in the capitals of some of the wealthiest nations on earth. Consider the two videos below. The first is a report on a chemical weapons attack just in the last 24 hours on the Syrian city of Aleppo. What becomes apparent as you watch the video is that some government with a stockpile of chemical weapons is now making those weapons available to terrorist groups in Syria.

The second video is even more horrifying. A young boy tells his experiences of being held prisoner by ISIS. One thing that occurs to me is that the world today is more black and white than it has ever been in my lifetime. When I was growing up back in the last century, there were a lot of “gray areas,” as they are sometimes referred to. You could look at the struggle between the so-called “free world” and the Soviet Union and find plenty such areas. The Soviet Union was not the quintessence of evil that leaders like Ronald Reagan tried to make it out as, nor was the US snow white, pure, and good. There were gray areas on both sides.

Today the world is much more black and white, the line of demarcation more clear and visible. Take the struggle in Syria, for instance. Whether you think of ISIS as a terrorist organization or as a mafia gang run by some of the world’s wealthiest financial criminals (both views of it have gained credence of late), one thing that can be said is that it is pure evil. The Syrian people and their government are resisting that evil. This is not to say that the Syrian government is perfect by any means. But rather than accept or accede to the evil posed by the West, the Syrians have chosen to stand against it. The line of demarcation is very clear. Back in the 20th century you would have found lots of gray areas. Today such areas are far fewer.

4 thoughts on “A Look at Evil

  1. All of the power addicts and the billionaires running around trying to acquire more and more remind me of one of those dung beetles, working tirelessly to increase the size of his shit ball.

  2. A magnificent short reflection: philosophical yet so reality-based. Thank you very much!

    (I should purchase “The Memoirs of Saint John…,” but these days my reading concentration and comprehension are draining away….)

  3. While not on drugs , not sleeping , not sick or deranged , in the middle of an afternoon , I met and was attacked by a demon . I saw it clear as day . I heard it speak to me . I could describe it . One of the most unsettling experiences of my life . Was it real ? Did my mind invent it ? Was it an unusual product of unusual brain activity ? I am not interested in the ‘paranormal ‘ and did not seek any of this out . But I know I experienced it , and it was not the only such experience I have had .
    “Evil is a human creation ” , ” Evil is a mental construct ” , “It is all relative ” , ” Demons do not exist ” and many such phrases are heard from all quarters ; Kali on the Empire State Building and erection of the arch of Ba’al in NYC , the acceptance of Satanism as a religion in the British Navy , all defended as being open minded and granting equality . But I perceive we are at a time when sitting on the agnostic fence is for those who are blind to what is going on in this world . What we think and believe is important . And , Thank You , Richard Edmondson , thank you .

  4. It is the age-old struggle, zog8, and Christ is the refuge from all of these forces. Place your trust in him. And good luck!

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