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Finding Hope in Knowing the Universal Capacity for Evil

Finding Hope in Knowing the Universal Capacity for Evil

…human behavior is more influenced by things outside of us than inside. The “situation” is the external environment. The inner environment is genes, moral history, religious training. There are times when external circumstances can overwhelm us, and we do things we never thought. If you’re not aware that this can happen, you can be seduced by evil. We need inoculations against our own potential for evil. We have to acknowledge it. Then we can change it. Q. So you disagree with Anne Frank, who wrote in her diary, “I still believe, in spite of everything, that people are truly good at heart?” A. That’s not true. Some people can be made into monsters. And the people who abused, and killed her, were.

Truer words were never spoken–and by the man who designed the Stanford Prison Experiment! Knowing your shadow is always the best medicine.


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