Write about evil: how you understand it (or don’t), what you think it means, or a way it’s manifested, either in the world at large or in your life.
Photographers, artists, poets: show us EVIL.
Growing up Catholic, it was always imposed upon us that we were all born with original sin – whatever that was. It was also taught that whatever happened in your life, it was god’s will. Good things, bad things – all god’s will. And through it all, there would always be evil lurking in the shadows, eager to strike the unwitting populace.
They told me that before he was cast out of heaven, Lucifer was once God’s angel. But now he’s evil. My aunt attributes anything not Catholic to evil. Harry Potter – evil. Yoga – evil. Chinese food (because they have the pot-bellied Buddha by the door, and hence not Catholic) – evil, though after saying a prayer to absolve her of her sin of entering said Chinese establishment, she will then proceed to eat the once-evil and now-absolved food with gusto. So definitely, not so evil.
But in all seriousness, what is evil but a personal perception based on one’s knowledge that is heavily influenced by their culture, experiences, beliefs, and so many other factors – and whatever else has been shoved down one’s throat. All of us, I believe, can be evil – if we want to be. It all depends on how you look at it – and where you stand when you’re facing it.
Mean people are evil – although not in their minds – and they come in shapes and sizes, in all denominations and in all colors. So many things in this world are evil. But then so is chocolate, and the clothes that make my butt look big. And mean words meant to cow readers and listeners into submission.
So many things, it seems, can be evil. But not to the people who commit them.
I believe it all boils down to intention. What I do for a living, for example – massage – can be evil if I want it to be. Or, when boiled to the basics – human touch – can go either way. Nurturing, like when my husband or I massage my toddler’s feet every night, or its opposite, meant to restrict, demean or cripple growth of mind, body and spirit. Just read the news and you’ll see many examples of evil intentions linked to touch.
Maleficent, the much maligned witch of Sleeping Beauty fame and one of my favorite characters for I believe she’s so misunderstood, must have once been a nice person before the king and queen neglected to invite her to the princess’ christening. Then she turned evil. Or spurned. Or simply upset she didn’t get her own RSVP in the mail while everyone else who was somebody did.
With her, I really don’t know. I’m kinda on the fence. But maybe I’ll wait till the movie comes out to decide where I stand.