Common Western-social systems have upheld the notion of "goodness" as a trait that defines the nature and impression of a human being. Even today you will find that virtually all cultures and societies have some idea of what "good" means, even if this idea is drastically different from another.

Even disregarding religion, atheists will often have areas where there's perceived "good" and "bad." In short, all cultures define such sides for some sense of social utility and functioning. Even if you disregard any religious or non-religious viewpoints, including all inbetween, people still see fluctuations, variations, and degrees to which actions and outcomes are "good" or "bad" in some way.

People, however, often form conjectures and ideals that ground people to certain qualities -- and they generally will do so with extremes. The idea here is that people like to choose who is "bad" and who is "good," and/or weigh each trait against the other and make their own choices.

Given that nobody knew whether an individual was good or bad, and the individual seems good, is that all that would be required for a person to be good, despite all else?

Is someone only "good" or "bad" if others measure them as such? I know murderers, serial killers, and some others have probably seen themselves as good people that just did what they felt they needed to; likewise, selfless, caring, helpful and nice people can feel like they are disgusting and "evil."

If how you feel tells you what you are to yourself, but other's viewpoints can shape the impression of you, what really matters: whether you decide you're good or bad, or whether others decide it? Why?

If we want to take this all the way back to Philosophical drawing board, I could postulate that "good" and "bad" simply do not exist anymore than the subjectivity that defines "right" or "wrong" far and wide.

If other people decide it, and it's subjective, being "good" or "bad" is hardly something you can prove or sense with solid reasoning -- more so it seems to be an opinion of someone at best.

Some people talk about "bad motives," but isn't such a thing nothing more than an action? We all take actions -- some different than others. There can't be any "bad motive" because such a thing would not exist any more than an unspoken thought; unheard sound; unbelieved notion; or even existence.

Can you understand me?


This is the core motivation of Nietzsche's "Perspectivism" laid out in one form in "Beyond Good and Evil' -- everyone has part of the truth, and all we can do that is not just a waste of our existence is inject our part of the truth into the world. That is not good or bad, it just is.

If your specific contribution involves wishes to change things, it will be seen as good by some and bad by others. But if it actually accomplishes change, that is inevitably going to change the overall meaning of good and bad anyway. So in what way can those even be meaningful guideposts? And why are they there?

Ultimately, as they evolve, there is no good or bad, there is only the desire to have power over what is seen as good or bad. There are no positions or statuses, only effects.


Consider these situations (very realistic):

Bob is "bad" because he makes a lot of money. He is seen as "bad" because people think that the motives and means he uses to make him all of that money is what makes him lack "good" qualities.

John is "good" because he is hardworking, and doesn't have a lot of money. He is seen as "good" because he is believed not to cheat or harm others -- and he struggles to live and provides for others.

Right away you can dissect both of those examples and wonder a few things immediately:

Why is Bob "bad" just because he uses certain means to make more of something?

Why is John "good" just because he works hard and struggles to make much of anything?

We can easily turn the tables and look at it this way:

Bob is "good" because he has lots of resources and provides for his family and donates a large sum of his money to charities, foundations, and organizations that help others.

John is "bad" because he refuses to take a different approach, and works at a low-paying job because he's too lazy and unwilling to take the steps to improving his quality of life.

Depending on how I present these examples, immediately you see that both people can be good or bad; good and bad; or more good than bad/bad than good; or neither one of the previously mentioned.

It is part of human nature to form quick judgments -- it's part of survival and it's kind of instinctual.

While people (in general) can take a step back and assess what they're assuming, people (and all animals) are naturally always going to form impressions of, well, everything to some degree. Since there's no way to measure an impression in someone's brain vs. another -- and the ideal behind "good" and "evil" is nothing short of suggestions, it's perfectly clear: good and bad are views.

There is no way to accurately judge whether something is good or bad because too many variables, contexts, and dimensions exist from which we can form a common ground of it.

Some people will reason that everyone has to be good and bad -- nobody can be only one. If such a nature makes sense to you, accept that you and everything else has its pros and cons -- that's the best way to live on with it. If you think you are more of one than another and wish to change that, there are steps one can take to do so that would be more than obvious in a society/culture.

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