What came first Good or Evil? All religions seem to think that the universe is inherently good. Everything is part of the same good God (a pantheistic God) or part of the same good God’s creation. In either case, the universe was created and “it was good”.
So then from where did the concept of evil come about? Some feel that it is because of our own confusion with the reality of the universe, equivalently saying that evil is just an incorrect answer to the question of reality. Others feel it is because of Satan or not being in the will of God. Still others feel that it is anything that deviates from good.
In true convergenistic style, I lean towards the belief that all three are actually saying the same definition of evil. God is the universe. God is reality. To be apart from God is to sin or be evil. To be apart from reality is to be evil.
This frustrating question of free will that comes up is interesting as well. Can we truly choose to be evil? Or is the universe allowing us to think that we are evil in a universally deterministic chaos machine? I’ll get into free will in a different post, but it seems to me that we can either choose to be good or to not be good.
Is it possible for only humans to be evil or is there an external entity called evil apart from humans? In the pantheistic religions, evil is something that is inherent in all of creation, not just in humans. All “objects” in the universe that behave themselves as separate, individual objects are considered to possess evil, that separation from the good which is being one with the universe. In this case, what attribute in all individual objects allows them to view themselves as separate. Is it instinct?
In monotheistic religions, evil is a human trait, but then evil is also considered passed down from the original sinner. Is evil in this case also instinct?
However, the initial conditions in the universe were good. And the universe seems to be deterministic, derived from that original state. So at what point did evil, that element of randomness and deviation, come about? Or is the existence of evil a necessary transition from the initial conditions in the universe to the optimal conditions of ultimate good?