Evidence: The available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid.
“Are humans inherently evil?”
Because of my Catholic faith, I say “No.”
As a Catholic, I believe that human beings are inherently good. It’s just that, because of Adam’s and Eve’s sin, we aren’t as good as we should be:
Although it is proper to each individual, original sin does not have the character of a personal fault in any of Adam’s descendants. It is a deprivation of original holiness and justice, but human nature has not been totally corrupted: it is wounded in the natural powers proper to it, subject to ignorance, suffering and the dominion of death, and inclined to sin – an inclination to evil that is called “concupiscence.” Baptism, by imparting the life of Christ’s grace, erases original sin and turns a man back towards God, but the consequences for nature, weakened and inclined to evil, persist in man and summon him to spiritual battle.
~ Catechism of the Catholic Church, Section 405
After running on a treadmill earlier today, I had a thought — new evidence for my belief in the inherent goodness of humans:
The naked human body.
God created our bodies and said they are inherently “very good.” (Genesis 1:31)
But because of Adam and Eve eating the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil — Genesis 2:17 — we are less able to see the inherent goodness of all that God has created.
Hence the need to cover up.
Looking at myself, there are times where I think I don’t like my body.
Shame at the state of my body is what motivates me to run on a treadmill. My body is inherently good, but because of Adam’s and Eve’s sin, more often than not I look at it and think I don’t feel good.
If someone ever tells you “Humans are inherently evil sinners,” one thing you could do is look in a mirror.
Take in the sight of your body. See everything that makes you think Yes! and everything that makes you think Ugh!
Do that, and remind yourself:
What I am, inherently, is very good.
Despite its imperfection, your body is deserving of love, respect, and attention.
Glorify God with your body.
~ 1 Corinthians 6:20
And despite the imperfection of you yourself — Genesis 3:7 — you are created for love, respect, and attention, too. (Genesis 2:15, Genesis 2:18)
He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart…
~ Ecclesiastes 3:11
You are not meant to settle for anything less.