What is the root of all evil. Religion? War? Money? "Bad social systems" like dictatorship, facism, whatever? Actually, none of these things are inherently evil in themselves. They can be used for extraordinary evil just as much as they can be used for extraordinary good. When you are looking for the root of all evil, you are looking for the root cause of all evil. And that would be people.
Not all people are evil, some say. I agree...at a given time. But all people are easily capable of being good or evil. For instance, there is a common malcontent with the divide of resources and revenue between the rich and the poor. The rich are seen as greedy, callous, sneaky manipulators who would stoop to any level to further their own profits. But what isn't said is that many of these very same people would do the very same things and more if by doing them they knew they could achieve wealth and power. If someone came up to a poor person in secret without any of his friends or family knowing and asks them to do something wicked to one or more of those family or friends and he will have a billion dollars, what would he do? Now this man probably was not "evil" minded before and probably cared greatly for his family and friends. But with the promis of ease, leisure, and escape from wage-slavery and bill-worries, money-worries, health-worries, etc...how will this eat at his resolve in the end?
The easiest way I can show this is the vampire. We KNOW vampires are evil. They kill other humans an suck their blood. They do this every night and no telling how many times per night. But we are fascinated with them. We slide over the faults of the vampire because we are seduced by the benefits. Charisma, sexuality, power, strength, immortality...Even if it meant becoming a monster and having to kill other people in order to sustain yourself, how many people would actually do this? Many would say no immediately but, unfortunately, that's not how it works. You can say all that you want, but the true test comes when it is held out right before you and you have a choice, at that moment, whether to accept or reject all these great things.
I guess I could also use the same of demon-conjuring or the Faustian legends. You KNOW these entities are evil and that the things they promise you have wicked consequences for you or the people around you but you are so seduced by the promise of immediate satisfaction to whatever you have been desiring that you submit yourself to it anyway.
The problem with evil is that it is inextinguishable. Even if you removed every evil person from power today, those from the "non-evil" part would become the new evil ones tomorrow. Even if you removed religion, war, and money, something else would become the expression of evil in the world.
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