The battleline between good and evil

quote-the-battleline-between-good-and-evil-runs-through-the-heart-of-every-man-aleksandr-solzhenitsyn-174264

I believe there is such a thing as goodness, which is devotion to human flourishing in myself and others, and I believe there is such a thing as badness, which is the human weaknesses that prevent people from serving the good.

I also believe there is such a thing as evil, which is hatred of the good.

There are such things as good countries, which allow their people to flourish, and there are bad countries, where corruption, privilege and power without accountability prevent human flourishing.

And there are such things as evil regimes, such as those of Hitler and Stalin, which kill and torment people for no real reason except pure malice.

The ISIS regime and its allies such as Boko Haram in Nigeria seem to be pure evil, although they may attract followers who don’t realize what they’re getting into until it is too late.  If I could push a button and blow up all the ISIS leaders while sparing innocent human life, I certainly would do so.

At the same time, I recognize that the seeds of the ISIS atrocities and of almost every other bad and evil human action exist within myself.   I have never wanted to set anybody on fire or slowly saw anyone’s head off at the neck, and I have never fantasized about it, but I have thought and done things that, in their small way, were just as pointlessly malicious.

To recognize the evil in myself is not to deny or mitigate the evil of ISIS.   It is to recognize the truth of what Alexander Solzhenitsyn, the great Russian writer, once said, which is that the battleline between good and evil does not run between nations nor between individuals, but through the heart of every human being.

∞∞∞

When I write or say things like this, my friends sometimes accuse me of being overly humble.   At other times, they accuse me of being overly cynical or of having a weird sense of humor.

I don’t think I am any of these things.  All I am is someone who tries to state the truth as he sees it in plain language.

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One Response to “The battleline between good and evil”

  1. 61chrissterry Says:

    What is good and evil, do we not all have our own opinions, for do we not all do good and evil acts. But are these defined by the individuals themselves, by other individuals, Society or the degree of them being good or evil.

    Like

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