Many people find it intolerable that I can empathize with everyone; from the lying drug addict to the hedge fund manager that pissed away your college fund. Even a serial killer wasn’t just born a sociopath, there are reasons for these behaviors. I certainly don’t condone drug addiction, murder or exploitation, but in the right context I can understand how a human being could make a series of choices leading to awful acts. We can turn away from these people, these very human behaviors and banish them to a cell somewhere or often subject the poor to continue living in the impoverished conditions they supposedly “choose” to live in, or we can attempt to become an enlightened society which recognizes our inate weaknesses, the prison that is one’s perceptive view, and empathize with one another for becoming the product of environmental influence. Anything short of this absolute and unconditional empathy for others requires the absurd notion of “evil”, a superstition rooted in ignorance. “Choice” is a matter of available options. Context is universal. Context is everything.
I couldn’t agree with you more. Great post.