In the Bible, we are told that in partaking of the forbidden fruit, we became as the Gods, knowing Good and Evil. The assumption is that this part of what the serpent said was true. That it was this event that led to our ability to recognize right and wrong, and that in doing so, we are somehow better than we were. And maybe that is true. But unfortunately, what most of us don’t realize is that Good and Evil are illusions.
That statement is a controversial one, I’m sure. Any “good” Christian will probably assume I’m deluded by Satan or something. But hear me out, and you will see why I say that.
First, you have to have a clear understanding of what “Evil” is. I took the first occurrence in the Bible of the word, looked up the Strong’s concordance, found the definition of the original word, found the root word for it, and read the meaning of that. “To spoil, by breaking.” To spoil, as in the “spoils of war.” So, at its core, “evil” means destruction, a breaking apart. So it is no wonder that at one point in history, we called floods and hurricanes “evil.” They are most certainly destructive, thus, they ARE evil. They don’t fit our modern idea of “evil” so we don’t say that, today. But as little as 100 years ago, people still used that word that way.
So, if “evil” is destruction, obviously “good” means the opposite, to support, sustain, or build up.
Now, think about something: Whenever you build something up, you are changing the configuration of what was to create something new. Whenever you destroy something, you are changing the configuration of what was, to create something new. Think about that! Every act of creation is an act of destruction! And every act of destruction is an act of creation.
Thus, whether an event qualifies as “good” or “evil” depends entirely on perspective. If all you can see is the value of what was, and you find no value in what has become, then you will call the event “evil.” If you instead value more what has become, then the event will be labeled “good.” Thus, “good” and “evil” are illusions of perspective, and not absolute realities!
If we can see value in both sides of the change, if we recognize them both as being desirable, then the event ceases to be either “good” or “evil.” It just is.
Many people tend to project human characteristics onto God. And thus, they assume that whether an event is “good” or “evil” depends on whether or not God sees it one way or another. So, there is an “absolute” definition of Good and Evil. The problem with that view is, how can they be sure that God values the “before” or the “after” more? As we have all heard, God turns all things to his benefit, right? Thus, regardless of what it is, or what path it seems to go, in the end, it’s all good!
So I, personally, tend to think that in general God’s viewpoint is the “neutral” viewpoint, that all things are neither good nor bad, they just are. That everything that happens is perfectly okay, that God is never upset by any of it.
This doesn’t exactly fit with the God of the old testament. But then, I’m not sure that the God of the old testament was an accurate reflection of the reality of God. The God I know would not have hated someone enough to have them pummeled to death by stones at the hands of his neighbors and friends and family for something so trivial as stooping down to pick up sticks on a particular day of the week.
I think that, like so many other times, man’s ideas were interjected from time to time. That sometimes the stories were merely an attempt to explain what we experience in the world. Or were man’s ideas ascribed to God either to give them weight, or because they genuinely could not tell the difference. Either way, they were not a true and accurate depiction of the nature or mind and will of God.
If you are truly committed to your old views of Good and Evil, you likely will call me either a blasphemer or deluded. But try to see things from an eternal perspective, from God’s perspective. A perspective where something “good” comes out of everything that happens, even major destructive events. A perspective where death is not the end. Where suffering and pain all eventually end, and the individual is better for having gone through it. A perspective where God knows why everything that happens is happening. Where all events, no matter what, are happening for a reason.
Get that perspective, hold it in your mind for even a few minutes, and you will see that I am right: Good and evil are delusions of a lesser perspective, a creation of our limited awareness. They are not real! And then, armed with that realization, we can all begin to get a little less worked up over things. And when we start to see the why behind everything, then we can begin to effect change, shaping the world into what we want it to be, without the need to label it as “good” or “evil.”