Does Evil Really Exist?

Jul 01

Are we asking the wrong question when we ask, “Does evil really exist?”

What if we change the question to: “What does the word “evil” mean to me in this particular experiential context?”

Envision a mother, bound and gagged, forced to watch a brutal gang rape of her beautiful ten-year old daughter. The mother’s and daughter’s physical and emotional pain has to be nothing short of excruciating.

If I were in the shoes of either, it would be easy to label the rapists “cruel”, “brutal”, “uncaring”, and even “evil”. From the rapists’ perspective, they are probably simply showing off their sexual prowess and engaging in male camaraderie. But at what cost to the mother and daughter?

If you’ve never spoken with a woman who has been brutally raped, you have no idea what shame, guilt and anguish she experiences or the years it takes her to heal. If she’s fortunate, her shame, guilt and anguish will eventually turn to rage and outrage, and yes, this rage and outrage may initially be directed at the rapists. Temporarily, she may need to label these men “evil” in order to find the courage to step into her own passion, power and purpose. What will that passion, power and purpose be? To protect herself and all other women on this planet from this type of life-shattering experience and stand firm in her own core respect for and appreciation of herself and all other women.

Resisting Evil

Jul 25

A visitor to one of my other websites,, asked an interesting question:

“Do you resist evil 100%? Does the impulse come to resist, and what do you do with the impulse?”

What do we mean by the word “evil”?

Personally, I don’t much like that word. It smacks of judgment, and judgment is not my job. Discernment, however, is.

Discernment is just noticing and making choices about how I am going to respond to behavior I prefer to call “dysfunctional.” Dysfunctional behavior is behavior that is win/lose. Functional behavior is win/win. That means doing the best I know how to bring harmony into a conflicted relationship or situation. Sometimes, I just have to walk away. That, in itself, often leads to harmony, as well as a lesson to the person who is stuck in win/lose thinking.

As far as impulses go, I always notice them and listen to them, but I rarely act out on them. Instead, I make choices about them. It’s called “being the witness.” Impulses and emotions are generally bringing me a message I need to hear, decipher, and understand. Once I understand what I need to change in my own life to restore peace and harmony, I can make a conscious choice about the appropriate action to take. It is never about taking action against another. It may be about protecting myself from dysfunctional people and situations.

By making choices about how I am going to change, I put my power back where it belongs – in my own hands.