Here is David Brooks echoing our Thursday Morning Bible Study.
I said something like “I never really had that much of a problem with evil, I believe in original sin.” Here is Mr. Brook’s explaining it in light of SSGT. Bales. And catch the last paragraph. That daily struggle, think the series on Spiritual Practices. Which I’ll have #3 tomorrow. Until then, David Brooks.
According to this view, most people are naturally good, because nature is good. The monstrosities of the world are caused by the few people (like Hitler or Idi Amin) who are fundamentally warped and evil.
This worldview gives us an easy conscience, because we don’t have to contemplate the evil in ourselves. But when somebody who seems mostly good does something completely awful, we’re rendered mute or confused….
In centuries past most people would have been less shocked by the homicidal eruptions of formerly good men. That’s because people in those centuries grew up with a worldview that put sinfulness at the center of the human personality…
According to this older worldview, Robert Bales, like all of us, is a mixture of virtue and depravity. His job is to struggle daily to strengthen the good and resist the evil, policing small transgressions to prevent larger ones. If he didn’t do that, and if he was swept up in a whirlwind, then even a formerly good man is capable of monstrous acts that shock the soul and sear the brain.