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Different from empathy and sympathy compassion is the strength to be willing to try and ease someone's suffering, to help them ho...

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Evil Relies on Silence

 Silence is consent.  

Evil depends on darkness. When thrust into the light it withers or runs. The truth destroys it, or at least allows good to fight it. Tyrants depend on keeping their subjects in intellectual darkness. The hypocrisy becomes obvious with knowledge. That is why they jail dissenters and artists, because they reveal the truth, Evil calls itself good and cloaks itself in the appearance but calling itself "the people's", or "democratic" or "republic" or "transparent and accountable" when it does everything to be the opposite. Evil, like depression, tries to reverse perceptions so that right is wrong, and happiness is bad while misery is good. What is evil? It is selfishness at the expense of others. Evil delights in causing others pain, it benefits by bringing others down, it works in secret, and it forces its views on others. It is not the absence of good or the unfortunate results of natural disasters, it is intentional and callous. It is active, but it begins in apathy. Lack of empathy and failure to engage because it takes too much effort or is not personally interesting is selfish. It is an attempt to claim helplessness in order to abdicate adult responsibility. It is an unwillingness to use the free will that we've been given for good, and though not inherently evil, aids evil more often then good. All evil needs to be victorious is for good people to say nothing when they have the chance. It is no accident that the people Jesus was hardest on were hypocrites.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945) A German Lutheran Pastor who became a strong opponent of the rise of Nazism in Germany. He was arrested by the Gestapo and executed in a concentration camp.