Tag Archives | Evil
Perhaps reserve some skepticism, but the claim is that future serial killers and dictators could be pinpointed in childhood via brain scan of the front lower forehead area. The Daily Mail reports:
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A German neurologist claims to have found the area of the brain where evil lurks in killers and rapists. One of Germany’s best-known brain specialists, Bremen scientist Dr. Gerhard Roth says the ‘evil patch’ lies in the brain’s central lobe and shows up as a dark mass on X-rays. He discovered it when investigating violent convicted offenders over the years for German government studies.
‘We showed these people short films and measured their brain waves,’ he said. ‘Whenever there were brutal scenes the subjects showed no emotions. In the areas of the brain where we create compassion and sorrow, nothing happened.’ The dark mass at the front of the brain, he says, appears in all scans of people with records for criminal violence.
In this world, we see varying levels of what we traditionally call good and evil. We have ways to measure them with our religious notions, but if we see the world through a materialists eyes, what is good or evil? Some may say that good and evil are behaviors that are infringements on the survival of the group, or plan in which the participant is a part of; practically saying, evil is an acting out of animalistic nature that hurts the herd and nothing more. This does not work in all cases though, for there are things people do to themselves that are harmful and therefore seen as bad. The religious crowd sees morality as having come from God: a set of guidelines fraught with consequence and reward if obeyed or rejected, but why are certain things deemed sin? There are things that only seem to hurt us, so how can those things fit with the materialist view?… Read the rest
Many who have not experienced crisis feel apt to cast judgement comfortably from desk chairs, internet cafes, or cubicals. Yet how many can say they have met evil? I don’t mean Glenn Beck, The Koch Brothers, or Glen Danzig (bless his heart). I mean the person that stands between you and a much needed meal. How many even worry all that much about their next meal, in this land of plenty (right)?
A Bosnian survivalist retells how he faced reality.
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I am from Bosnia. You know, between 1992 and 1995 it was hell. For one year I lived, and survived, in a city with 6000 people, without water, electricity, gasoline, medical help, civil defense, distribution service, any kind of traditional service or centralized rule.
Our city was blockaded by the army and for 1 year life in the city turned into total crap. We had no army, no police, we only had armed groups – those armed protected their homes and families.
A response to the recent and popular Disinformation article entitled “On The Evils Of Chairs“.
Years ago I used to clean toilets for a big supermarket. I’ll never forget seeing a fully fledged brown trout sat on the edge of the toilet seat one day and wondering, ‘how do you miss when you’re doing one of those?’. It turns out that whoever was responsible had probably been learning to use the squat technique which I’m about to advocate to you, a fellow Disinfonaught. I do so only because once you try this you will honestly never look back.
My first experience of squatting came through an article in, Dodgem Logic, the magazine Alan Moore edited for a year or so. It has recently been kindly posted on the original author, Margaret Killjoy (or Magpie)’s, personal website.… Read the rest
Halloween spookiness from the Daily Mail with a whole town worked into a frenzy over the ultimate parenting conundrum — a newborn believed to be displaying demonic powers:
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A new-born baby in Colombia can already walk by himself and produce fire, his own mother has claimed. Ana Feria Santos gave birth to her son last month but says her joy quickly turned to fear when she noticed that he had ‘several abnormalities’ – leading to fears in her community that he is the ‘devil in disguise’.
Much like the 1976 horror film The Omen, the mother-of-five says he frequently hides around the house, cackles in an ‘adult’ way for hours on end and has an ‘intimidating’ pair of eyes.
Her neighbours in the town of Lorica, near the Caribbean coast, also say he is possessed by a ‘malign spirit’ and that he is capable of producing fire. It has led to vigilante attacks on Santos and her taxi-driver husband Óscar Palencia López’s house, which is allegedly being pelted with stones on a nightly-basis by frightened residents.
Julie Shoshana Pfau, a graduate student in religion at Emory University, and David R. Blumenthal, who teaches and writes on constructive Jewish theology, medieval Judaism, Jewish mysticism, and holocaust studies, discuss “How can you relate to an abusive God in a positive way?” at CrossCurrents:
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In 1993, I published my post-shoah theology entitled Facing the Abusing God: A Theology of Protest (Westminster John Knox). The book did not have the impact on Jewish and Christian theologians, on psychotherapists, or on holocaust survivors that it should have had. The reasons for this are complicated and I have tried to explain them elsewhere. However, the book has been read very steadily by survivors of child abuse and occasional doctoral students from whom I receive a steady stream of letters. The exchange below is a very good example and I am grateful to Julie Pfau for her willingness to publish these letters, as well as for her forthrightness in expressing herself.
Kate Kelland reports on Reuters via MNN:
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Simon Baron Cohen has been battling with evil all his life. As a scientist seeking to understand random acts of violence, from street brawls to psychopathic killings to genocide, he has puzzled for decades over what prompts such acts of human cruelty. And he’s decided that evil is not good enough.
“I’m not satisfied with the term ‘evil’,” says the Cambridge University psychology and psychiatry professor, one of the world’s top experts in autism and developmental psychopathology.
“We’ve inherited this word … and we use it to express our abhorrence when people do awful things, usually acts of cruelty, but I don’t think it’s anything more than another word for doing something bad. And as a scientist that doesn’t seem to me to be much of an explanation. So I’ve been looking for an alternative — we need a new theory of human cruelty.”
Baron Cohen, who is also director of the Autism Research Center at Cambridge, has just written a book in which he calls for a kind of rebranding of evil to offer a more scientific explanation for why people kill and torture, or have such great difficulty understanding the feelings of others.