Hinduism View on Good and Evil
In the Hindu religion, good and evil are relative terms, one of which cannot exist without the other. What we refer to as good depends on the existence of what we call evil. In trying to separate good from evil and make each one stand by itself, we are not only destroying their relative and interdependent nature but also destroying the terms themselves. We are unable to see the other without relating the two, like the difference between light and darkness.
It should also be noted that the same thing can appear to be good and evil under various circumstances. That which appears as good in one case, may appear as evil if the condition change and the results be different. The same fire may be referred to as giver of life and comfort and a bestower of happiness and a producer of good, in the event that it saves the life of half-frozen man, or when it gives us warmth in the cold seasons of winter, or when it cooks our food and guides our feet. However, it will be called evil and a curse of God when it destroys life, or inflicts injury on man or his property.
Hinduism asserts that good and evil exists in our minds. That which fulfils our interests is referred to as good while that which brings to us misery or any misfortune is called evil. Things happen because of the law of karma. Pain, suffering and any kind of misfortune have not been imposed on people by God. Nor are these things as a result of the actions of anyone else. It is the same for good things that happen. Evil and suffering should not be viewed as unfair, instead are as a result of the behavior in a previous life.
Reward and punishment do not always come in this life. They might come in a future rebirth. For example, a good person might be reborn into a rich family as a reward for good deeds in a previous life. Hinduism teaches that each and every living being has got an inner spirit called the atman. The atman is eternal, indestructible and perfect. It is born into one physical body, and when that body dies, it is reborn into another.
Hindu teaches that if we judge everything from our own viewpoint, we can never know whether it is really good or evil, because our standard is imperfect and limited. It encourages looking at things from various standpoints in order for man to be able to understand the concept of good and evil. Each mistake that we make becomes a great teacher in the long run. Thus, evil has its good side, and good has its evil side. Besides, that which is good to one man can be sinful to another. From such arguments, it is in order to conclude that in Hinduism, good and evil go hand in hand. God never punishes the wicked, nor rewards the virtuous but it is our own acts that bring the results.
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