What is good and what is evil?

Poland
June 15, 2008 5:42am CST
The evolutionary mechanism of natural selection makes an implicit distinction between "good" or "fit" situations (those which survive in the long term), and "bad" or "unfit" ones (those which are eliminated sooner or later). Therefore, we might equate good or higher values with anything that contributes to survival and the continuation of the process of evolution, and evil with anything that destroys, kills or thwarts the development of fit systems. What do you think about this? Do you think that it's true? Maybe you have another point of view? Share with us!
1 person likes this
7 responses
• South Africa
15 Jun 08
"Good" is generally your own qualities, your own beliefs and your own characteristics. "Evil" is generally anything that contrasts with "good". The reason that they can't work as general terms is that they are relative to the perspective of the person that is labelling people as good or evil. Generally it is a better idea to label people that are dangerous to society as "evil" because then you can use it as an excuse to get rid of them.
2 people like this
• South Africa
15 Jun 08
Wow. That there is a serious moral dillemma. One can't really fault favouring the many children in the bus over the single child except that single child was the man's son. Generally parents are concerned with passing their own genes on and so it does not sound right to let one's own child get crushed. This is another reason why good and evil can not be absolutes but rather need to be in context.
@buldwgz (1483)
• United States
29 Jun 08
Good and evil are really just a point of view in themselves. Two sides of the same coin if you ask me.
@Agent89 (91)
• India
28 Jun 08
Everything is good, and everything is bad. It depends on your own circumastances and your own perceptions. .. whats good for me might not be good for you and whats bad for me might be the best alternative to someone else .. its not something we can label like jars on a shelf. :P...
@olivemai (4738)
• United States
18 Jun 08
The way I learned it in catholic school, the newest definition of evil is that which interferes with your relationships, with God and others! So if you do something like stealing, it makes it difficult if not impossible to have a relationship with the person you stole from!
• India
18 Jun 08
It is difficult to accept your argument. Here are my reasons for saying so. Firstly, the process of natural selection is against what we call as ethics. We think Mother Nature is all caring all loving and perfect harmony but definitely that isn't true! She is cruel, eliminating the weak instead of protecting them! I know that is essential for our survival, but that seems cruel nonetheless. If you have 3 children, and one fine day you decide that two are sufficient, do you throw one away? Or another case - if you have a disabled child, who became disabled after his birth in an accident - will you throw him away or kill him? NO you won't! That is against our sense of good and bad. Today what science gives us is hope for the weak not for the strong. According to nature, they should be eliminated in the process but we spend billions of dollars on cures for diseases. My question is WHY? Simply because we consider that to be good and not the way nature thinks! Another case - being selfish! It will help you in your own survival, but definitely not what we call 'good'!
@fifileigh (3619)
• United States
16 Jun 08
it is like reality shows, especially Survivor, or that novel, Lord of the Flies. nowadays, people who survive are evil as well as good, not necessarily a particular group of people. lots of crap live long than man good people...while some good people survive long as well. and some evil die young as well...so everything depends on the individual and what his path in life is...
@Latrivia (2889)
• United States
15 Jun 08
Well, while I fully believe morality was developed as the human race developed, I wouldn't go so far as to say a non-sentient process like evolution makes a distinction for good and evil. While a lot of things we consider good may help a species survive, so might a lot of things we consider evil. For example, in times of famine, certain animals can and do eat their own offspring to survive. Some species of animal will rape their females in order to impregnate them. While eating your own offspring will allow you to survive and live to breed another day, and rape may better allow you to sow your seeds, I don't think any human would ever see these actions as "moral". The process of evolution, just as the rest of nature, is amoral and makes no distinction between right or wrong. The animals involved in the process, however, can sometimes make that distinction - no matter how primitive the distinction may be.