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Lia Kohelet

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Is there such a thing as a bad person?

Few years ago I arose this question in front of my family, and "caused" a huge quarrel. I claimed (and still do) that I don't believe that bad people exist. Deep inside we all are good but sometimes we let life circumstances control us, thus, choosing to DO bad things. My brother heard me and said: "Oh really, so Hitler was a good guy, right??"

And yes! That's a question that I thought of even months thereafter. Hitler was a person who had chosen killing millions of people, but that precisely why I wouldn't describe him as a bad person, rather as a very SICK one. For a person who chooses to fulfill himself in this life by killing others, is undoubtedly extremely sick, mentally sick!!

It doesn't mean that we should let people who hurt others acting freely, but perhaps to look a little deeper, understand them better, and perhaps even understand OURSELVES better.

Would love to hear your thoughts,
Lia

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  • MR T

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    Jul 7 2012: So you are saying people do bad stuff because they have a mental illness?. I agree with this in a sense but how practical is it?.

    For example: Explaining away serial killers actions as though they are the result of a predetermined defect in their biological makeup kind of removes the responsibility from the individual's perspective.

    Say I want a phone, so I go hit someone and steal theirs, I could say 'It wasn't my fault, my genetic pre-disposition is for me to be a dick'.

    Where exactly do you draw the line?... and stop defining what is not currently agreeable with society as a mental illness
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      • MR T

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        Jul 10 2012: Interesting thoughts, but would you take them?....
    • Jul 10 2012: MR,

      First I have to clarify; when I'm saying that people are sick, I'm saying that in the bottom line we all are sick to some extent. We are going through crisis-es, getting hurt, abandoned, etc. These things leave a very profound impression on us. So "sick" doesn't have to be defined as a certain illness, maybe as "emotional wounds".

      I think that the line is within us; I'll explain: when we encounter people that hurt (not even terribly) others we most likely judge them right away. But what about remembering OUR inner line, understanding that those people are "sick" and instead trying to help them?

      Have you heard of the phrase: "There is no bad kid, rather, a kid who feels bad"? I utterly agree with that. In an ideal world, we were all doing our best in order to be better to ourselves and others. The problem is that throughout life (especially childhood) people are getting wounded emotionally, which makes that really hard to happen.

      Next time that someone is being mean to you, think about it that way. You might find it helpful. I hope you would.

      Lia

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