So soon after remembering the men and women sacrificed for peace in foreign wars, the visceral horror of conflict was brought home in the scenes from Paris. Ordinary people out to enjoy themselves in a restaurant, concert hall, football stadium, ripped apart in cold blood.
Words of condolence must come as little consolation to families trying to make sense of their loss.
It's hard to get inside the heads of people who want to commit mass murder. Surely they must be evil?
Coincidentally, this week's New Scientist (Nov 14 2015) published an article 'The Seven Symptoms of Evil' that seeks to shed some light on the mindset of IS fighters.
Easy enough to see these traits in others. Perhaps it's pertinent to spend another minute in silence to ponder whether we need to do a bit of work on ourselves.
"Syndrome E: Can Neuroscience Explain The Executioners of ISIS?" (Extract)
Seven symptoms of evil
The idea that evil is a disease is predicated on the observation that mass killers share some common traits:
- Compulsive repetitive violence
- Obsessive beliefs
- Rapid desensitisation to violence
- Flat emotional state
- Separation of violence from everyday activities
- Obedience to an authority
- Perceiving group members as virtuous
Link to the full article: