a mash-up of evil & culture
As has once again been demonstrated, as the literal smoke clears from the latest act of extremist brutality upon the doorstep of modern civilization, we don’t yet have a good grasp of how to define evil.
Oh, true, we have a dictionary definition of “evil” and that is all well and useful. But as terror strikes mounts, weapons discharging into crowds and individuals with varying levels of involvement in the ideological battles that precipitate into acts violence, it tends to rekindle the debate of right versus wrong, good versus evil, and therein the categorization of the moral certainty that defines the incongruous line between justified and it’s counterpart.
Debates blur the distinction, though they are themselves a necessary fuzziness that steps us closer to understanding an unclear definition. We categorize actions, ideas, and ideologies in the perspective of sided-ness, as though their manifest cores acting towards a flood of irrationality when viewed from any other angle but their originating one, and the values inherent in their purpose, so can resolve the question further in the minds of those who discuss these things with enough rigor.
Thus perspective becomes everything, yet all at once remains nothing, for if we cannot judge an act objectively by any standard is it not forever undefinable? Will we ever agree on a definition of evil? Not so long as the line that lets us define morality is blurred by ideology.