World cultures and world systems how evil is cognized: a summary of Hasan Askari’s view from the book Towards A Spiritual Humanism…continued.
We face an extraordinary challenge when it comes to the question of evil. An extraordinary philosophical and gnostic question at the same time. Knowing presupposes likeness, without likeness there is no knowing. There should be likeness between knower and the known. The principle of likeness becomes dangerous when it comes to evil and here is the profound challenge. In ancient and medieval times the sages advised us not to reflect on evil directly for only in this discourse one should not undergo identification. This presents a serious challenge for all discourse is identification and we are called upon not to identify with evil. Therefore, another procedure unlike any other is required and we have thus violated the principle of discourse itself. Evil should be discussed indirectly, at a distance otherwise we shall be in danger.
Evil pertains to a very brief conscious history of man. It has only recently entered into our lives, five to ten thousand years ago. What is it that has caused us to falter, to slump into evil and darkness? My intuition at the moment is that the source of evil is self-conscious good. Whenever humans have developed a self-conscious sense of good it creates a shadow, irrespective of it being religious, humanistic truth or ideology. Nature with what ever good it has is not self-righteous about it. However, when we talk about the best of our traditions we take pride in them creating a shadow. If we really wish to address ourselves to the correction of evil, we should reduce our self-conscious good. Sacred or Secular.