Is Human Nature Basically Good or Evil?

Discussion in 'Et Cetera, Et Cetera' started by earllogjam, Sep 24, 2007.

  1. earllogjam

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    What is your view on this?

    What experience, perception or insight has shaped your view?
     
  2. HazelGod

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    I think you're going to need to shape the question a bit more specifically. Good and evil are human constructs, and relative ones at that.
     
  3. SpeedoGuy

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    Regrettably, I have a pretty dim view of human nature. Multiple bad experiences involving trust, honesty, generosity, faith and kindness have cooled my idealism considerably over the years. Friends say I focus too much on the negative but emotional scars linger at least as long as physical ones.

    That's not to say I don't think good will win out over evil in the end. Its just that by then I don't think it will matter.
     
  4. IntoxicatingToxin

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    I say good, but that's primarily because I don't believe in evil.
     
  5. dong20

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  6. earllogjam

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    OK,

    You can view good and evil as two sides of the same coin and that everybody on the face of the earth has the capacity for both. But circumstances aside I'm interested in how people basically percieve other people. Are you open and welcoming to people or are you closed and suspicious of most people? Do you have a cynical view of human nature or an optimistic view?

    Do you think that left to their own devices that most people are instinctually good, altruistic, honest, kind, and just and have a good heart or do you think people are basically selfish, evil, self motivated, and would destroy each other if they were not forced to be good through laws, social morals, religion, and codes of conduct?

    And how does your view of human nature color your interaction with other people?
     
  7. hypoc8

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    I'm usually a little leery of people that I don't know. It seems as time goes on that people are getting more evil & selfish, just watch the evening news or pick up the paper. It gets worse every day. With all the laws we have it has never stopped people from killing and robbing, never will to many bleeding hearts out there.
     
  8. B_ScaredLittleBoy

    B_ScaredLittleBoy New Member

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    It depends on the nurture. A child born with a good 'nature' (or genes) can be turned bad (or evil if you wanna be like that). But if he is abused and mistreated as a child/infant then bad will be all he knows and he can only become what he has learned. And you only learn through experience.

    Similarly, a child predisposed to 'bad' can become good if he is loved and cared for.

    I do believe though that we are all animals at our core and there is always the chance/trigger for us (or at least some of us) to become animalistic and lose our humanity...

    lol but to answer the question...some people are 'better' people than others and there are degrees of evil.
     
  9. Wrey

    Wrey New Member

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    As much as I would love to answer with one or the other, I believe that these words are far to subjective and open to interpretation. One can conceive of a hundred different situation where one must choose 'between the lesser of two evils.' In either case neither choice would be thought of as 'good' so what is the net end result?

    I actually think that humans are basically niether good nor evil. They are basically selfish. This word in English is charged with negative conotations, but really in this context it just means that people are concerned with self preservation. Our modern world is filled with an infiinity of bizarre choices that have nothing to do with the choices we evolved to contend with. We try to make these choices fit paradigms like square pegs into round holes. They just don't fit
     
  10. Osiris

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    I say people are basically good. it really depends on what your definition of good and evil really are. What can change that is life experiences. I have watched friends over years turn from wonderful, selfless and giving to totally self absorbed and nasty. Life can change a person's general attitude.
     
  11. galaxus

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    we aren't good or evil. we evolve and survive. sometimes you have to be good and play along to survive, sometimes you may have to lie and cheat just to see tommarrow.

    we just survive and progress.
     
  12. D_Humper E Bogart

    D_Humper E Bogart New Member

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    It's all relative. :)
     
  13. Skull Mason

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    Evil. Look at the history of man!!! War, War, and more War.

    I trust no one on earth.
     
  14. B_625girth

    B_625girth New Member

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    I think people are basically good. the pursuit of material happiness starts eroding the basic good.

    also many, many bad choices are made under the influence of drugs/alcohol, and the choices get worse the drunker or drugged out you are.

    this is just my opinion, I'm 55 yo and have done my fair share of abuse, and made some bad choices in the past, not recently. I learned moderation a long time ago, and stay away from heavy drugs. I have seen people "sell their soul" for drugs. I know of a lady friend of mine(35 yrs) who I always liked and she liked me, but we never got in the right place at the right time, if you know what I mean. She trades her pussy for a bag of weed, I have witnessed it over a half dozen times in a bar, and have heard her tell the guy, "I'll do anything you want for an ounce of weed". She is 50 yrs old and I first heard this when she was 15!!!! 35 yrs of trading pussy for pot!!!! The only problem now is that she is losing her looks, and up until the last 2 yrs, you would not guess that she was closer to 50 than 40, but it sure is catching up fast. 35 years of making a bad choice. It's a real shame. I feel sorry for her and yet at the same time figure she deserves everything she gets. Our relationship was not always friendly as she stole from me, lied to me and gave the police my name along with many others to save herself from jail. And then denied doing so!! Even the cop that interrogated me told me they got the names from her.

    BTW, I was never arrested, I was pulled off the street, and into the cop shop for a 3 hour "interview". All this many, many years ago. Bad choices made. You learn. Make some good choices. rant over.
     
  15. Industrialsize

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    The nature of all humans is perfect
     
  16. Scorpiorising

    Scorpiorising New Member

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    I think that the basic nature of humans is neither good nor evil, but, without nurture, would act on animal instinct. We act in order to protect and preserve ourselves first. It is consciousness of our actions and how they affect our environment that leads us to 'right' action and 'for the greater good' stuff. So basically, we are either conscious humans or unconscious humans. That's very brief and I could probably go into more depth. I don't think anyone intends to hurt anyone else and I think when we act rashly or in rudely, it is merely animal instinct.

    Although, I believe this wholeheartedly, I am perplexed by the sociopath who is very conscious of how actions affect environment, yet continue to intentionally hurt others for no reason other than the satisfaction it gives them. In my opinion, that may be the only true evil in human nature.
     
  17. transformer_99

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    Most people are decent in my views, but when money gets in the way, you find out who the @ssh*les are. My problem @ work is, I genuinely try to help someone, but shortly after it becomes apparent the task/problem brought to me is well beyond that person, if not even myself. They are dumping the project and if there's any credit to be taken it's one-sided. I had to laugh, one project I got an "at-a-boy" on and an email was sent out to that effect. There were some that made snide remarks. I replied, Well, it's not like I got paid any more money for it or got a promotion, it only means the next time it needs to be done, I'll be the first one that they come to and there won't be any more reward for it that day either.
     
  18. naughty

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    Workin' up a good pot of mad!
    Evil. You dont have to teach us how to be mean selfish lie lazy greedy etc. Children have to be taught not to do these things.
     
  19. datdude

    datdude New Member

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    It needs to be what the herd needs it to be. When you upset the herd there are bad respones because the hernd needs to function as a group. Thats it.

    We look back at Hilter and say hes evil. The people in Germany did not see it that way at the time. He was a hero. He brought together his herd.

    So it depends on a society's perceotion of the events and what it does to that society at the time.
     
  20. viking1

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    That's correct.

    I would say that human nature is "self serving", and I suppose that would fit most people's idea of "evil"...
     
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