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Do you think people are born 'evil'?

Do you think there are people who are born either good or evil or are outside factors what determine behavior?

 
IhartU

Asked by IhartU at 9:13 AM on Aug. 4, 2009 in Religion & Beliefs

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Answers (24)
  • i don't think people are born evil. i think everyone starts out with the same blank slate..and their surroundings/environment determine how they are shaped. which in turn, may or may not change or weaken or deepen with maturity and knowledge. character and personality, whether it is good or bad, can change, depending on circumstances and how one deals with changes or happenings in one's life.
    or something like that.
    thehairnazi

    Answer by thehairnazi at 9:18 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • Outside factors, many have been damaged.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 9:16 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • It has been argued that people are a product of their environment. I agree with that to an extent but then there is a point where free will has to be held accountable too. You are how you choose to be. If you choose to rob a bank, rape someone, torture animals then you can't go around blaming society or your parents. Step up and take responsibility for the choices and separate actions you made.
    lilbit022009

    Answer by lilbit022009 at 9:16 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • But what about two twins, who are raised in the exact same environment and one of them ends up commiting evil acts and the other doesn't?
    IhartU

    Answer by IhartU at 9:20 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • I TRULLY BELEIVE EVIL EXISTS AND THAT SOME PEOPLE HAVE THAT IN THEIR VEINS, I HAVE SEEN EVIL COME FROM STABLE FAMILIES WITH NO OUTSIDE CIRCUMSTANCES TO PROVOKE THE EVILNESS. I ALSO BELEIVE THAT SOME PEOPLE THAT ARE EVIL HAVE NO CONCIOUS, THEY ARE NOT INTERESTED IN THE RIGHT OR WRONG, THEY JUST DON'T CARE.
    older

    Answer by older at 9:20 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • Yes. Although "evil" isn't really a scientific term, Psychology would categorize "Anti-Social Personality Disorder" or "Sociopathy/Psychopathy" as being scientifically "evil." (I love Dr. Michael Stone's "Scale of Evil"). According to Dr. Martha Stout in her book "The Sociopath Next Door," Sociopaths do not have that internal compass that tells them right from wrong. Although they have the ability to learn right and wrong and use their knowledge to stay out of trouble, they are absolutely capable of ANY deed without the anticipation anxiety (which has been scientifically documented in case studies) or remorse afterwards.

    I believe that sociopathy is genetic and behaviors can be manifested by negative external stimuli (not all sociopaths will comit crimes, some live normal lives).
    NovemberLove

    Answer by NovemberLove at 9:24 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • When I've posted about Sociopathy in the past, people will look at the diagnostic criteria (found in the DSM-IV, although the DSM-IV's description, IMHO, is in need of revision) and say "hey, some of those things sound like they're describing me! Are you calling me evil?!" If you actually care about someone calling you evil, you're not a sociopath lol. It's estimated that only 4% of people are Sociopaths (Stout p.1) and the criteria for Sociopaths might seem to describe actions of anyone who has fallen down on their luck. The fact of the matter is, Sociopathy has nothing to do with having a bad day. Jeffrey Dahmer, Aileen Wuornos, Charles Manson (I could go on)...THOSE were Sociopaths. Not people who miss a few bills here or there or did something on accident and felt bad about it.
    NovemberLove

    Answer by NovemberLove at 9:28 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • I believe that people are mostly good - born and bread that way... BUT that there are those that are born with a great "evil" inside them. However I don't believe this "evil" is any mystical force as much as it is usually mental. Millions of people are born with "malfunctions" in their brain. It causes them to be evil. Environmental influences also contribute, but I think it's mostly mental. The real problem is that we don't know who has an issue until it's usually to late. I don't think it's anything more than mental issues.
    My Grandmothers Dad was an evil EVIL man! Til the day he died he was just evil. What made him evil more than his actions was that he liked being that way. When his priest told him it was wrong to rape his children, he just quit going to church... When the neighbors called the police because he was beating his wife he burned their house down... Anyone can act evil - but the ones that like it are the worst
    SabrinaMBowen

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 9:28 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • No. I believe that baby's come from God and come into the world innocent. It is only when the world starts to influence the baby that things arise.
    baconbits

    Answer by baconbits at 9:28 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

  • Come on people, stop crying the devil made me do it. Have some accountability. The whole nature vs nurture thing is old.

    In the example of the twins, some say they were raised the same. If you have siblings you know first hand that in spite of parents allegations of equality they always treat siblings differently for the simple reason that no two persons are alike or experience things the same way.

    Being a parent isn't a "cookie cutter" thing so it is possible that children from the same family were raised completely differently under the same roof and interpreted the same actions of the parents completely differently. I think that we are all capable of fostering evil thoughts but we either exercise control of ourselves or we don't.

    Another possibility is a neurological wiring predisposition to inhibit or impair judgment between right and wrong. Regardless, that doesn't justify some people's behavior
    bebita

    Answer by bebita at 9:33 AM on Aug. 4, 2009

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