Talking about Evil

All concerns of men go wrong when they wish to cure evil with evil.

SOPHOCLES, The Sons of Aleus [fragment]

 

The soul that has conceived one wickedness can nurse no good thereafter.

SOPHOCLES, Philoctetes

 

Evil is unspectacular and always human

And shares our bed and eats at our own table.

W.H. AUDEN, Herman Melville

 

Evil is a point of view.

ANNE RICE, Interview with the Vampire

 

The evil that is in the world almost always comes of ignorance, and good intentions may do as much harm as malevolence if they lack understanding.

ALBERT CAMUS, The Plague

 

Evil is done without effort, naturally, it is the working of fate; good is always the product of an art.

CHARLES BAUDELAIRE

 

Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And when you look long into an abyss, the abyss also looks into you.

FRIEDRICH NIETZSCHE, Beyond Good and Evil

 

Evil is always possible. And goodness is eternally difficult.

ANNE RICE, Interview with the Vampire

 

I happen to think that the singular evil of our time is prejudice. It is from this evil that all other evils grow and multiply. In almost everything I’ve written there is a thread of this: a man’s seemingly palpable need to dislike someone other than himself.

ROD SERLING, Los Angeles Times, 1967

 

No one becomes depraved all at once.

JUVENAL, Satires

 

Apathy is the glove in which evil slips its hand.

ANONYMOUS

 

All things truly wicked start from an innocence.

ERNEST HEMINGWAY, A Moveable Feast

 

In every man’s heart there is a devil, but we do not know the man as bad until the devil is roused.

JAMES OLIVER CURWOOD, “The Case of Beauvais,” Back to God’s Country and Other Stories

 

Don’t let us make imaginary evils, when you know we have so many real ones to encounter.

OLIVER GOLDSMITH, The Good-Natured Man

 

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

EDMUND BURKE

 

All evils are equal when they are extreme.

PIERRE CORNEILLE, Horace

 

Fairly examined, truly understood,

No man is wholly bad, nor wholly good.

THEOGNIS OF MEGARA, Fragment XLI

 

Even an evil man can have principles—he can be true to his own evil, which is not always so easy.

NORMAN MAILER, The Paris Review, winter-spring 1964

 

“The only good is knowledge and the only evil is ignorance” – Socrates

 

“False words are not only evil in themselves, but they infect the soul with evil” – Socrates

 

In this life, we have to make many choices. Some are very important choices. Some are not. Many of our choices are between good and evil. The choices we make, however, determine to a large extent our happiness or our unhappiness, because we have to live with the consequences of our choices.

James E. Faust

 

The battleline between good and evil runs through the heart of every man.

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

 

It is a man’s own mind, not his enemy or foe, that lures him to evil ways.

Buddha

 

We must develop and maintain the capacity to forgive. He who is devoid of the power to forgive is devoid of the power to love. There is some good in the worst of us and some evil in the best of us. When we discover this, we are less prone to hate our enemies.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s