Essay: What is Evil? part 2
Animals: Tradition - Philosophy - Religion Article from


Stephen Kaufman, M.D., Christian Vegetarian Association (CVA)

Essay: What is Evil? part 2

Last essay, I argued that evil isn’t real, as in a material or spiritual substance. What, then, is evil?
I think evil is the part of human nature that separates us from God and from each other (including God’s creatures). We all have egocentric desires, including the desire for self-esteem and desires to experience sensual pleasures. Desires become evil when they alienate us from God or God’s creation. I think “satanic desires” can be used interchangeably with “evil desires.”
This was exemplified by Jesus’ response to Peter’s denial that Jesus would be killed and raised after three days. Peter hoped that he would gain fame and fortune as a leading disciple of Jesus. But Jesus saw these as evil, satanic desires that conflicted with Jesus’ ministry. Mark 8:33 reads, “But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter, and said, ‘Get behind me, Satan! For you are not on the side of God, but of men.’ ”
All of us have satanic desires – it’s part of our being human. Having such desires is one way to regard us as “fallen” and in need of God’s grace. How do we transcend satanic desires? I will consider this question next essay.

Go on to: Transcending Satanic Desires
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